Calypso Quarterfinals begin tonight

The process to select nine calypsonians to go up against the 2009 Calypso Monarch Zacari, begins tonight, at 9 pm, at Golden Eye Revue, in what will be night one of a three-night Quarterfinals round.
Once the centerpiece of Carnival, the calypso competition has been on downward spiral, and this year has been no different. A relatively dormant season has been characterised by late starts – or no start at all in the case of Pepperpot – of the tents and an absence of songs to make people stand at attention or consider consorting with a bookmaker.
In fact, the biggest thing to happen to calypso this year is the threat of lawsuits for 2007 Monarch De Bear and Caricom Man, who both mashed the corns of High Court Judge Louise Blenman with their songs. And even then, Caricom Man, A Crown counsel by day, was not planning to enter the competition.
Coming in a somewhat distant second to that brouhaha is the participation of Minister of Carnival Eleston Adams, who’s trading in his longtime moniker Nambulumbu-Nambalala for Dr Paul, to contest the monarchy.
He sings in the number three spot tonight, from a list of 24 artistes. Up to press time, Dr Paul was the only Friday-night contender who declined to confirm what song he would render.
De Bear will be competing tonight, as well, with Tow De Line.  Other calypsonians who have created a buzz so far and who will be on show tonight are Jim, with Me Nar Sing Dat; Kaseba, Take That to Court, QC (warning: the song is 8:52 long); and Baldhead, who will sing Information in the penultimate spot.
The second night of eliminations is for the Masters Tent, on Sunday, at 7, at Multipurpose Cultural Centre.
The calypsonians attached to Pepperpot will have their chance on Monday, at 8 pm, at House of Culture, in a last-minute configuration called CDC Calypso Connection.
Reports indicate that this is because of internal issues at Pepperpot, also known as the University of Calypso and Soca, which missed last Saturday’s opening date without as much as an announcement to eager patrons who waited outside the venue.
Tonight’s cast, in order of appearance is:  Chalice, All of a Sudden; Princess Thalia, Hold It Down; Dr Paul; King Fiah, The Poor Man’s Struggle; Okra Slime, Farmers are Radian; Calypso Jim, Me Nah Sing That, Kimmy, Voice of the Children; De Bear, Tow De Line; Sassy, The Only Way; Shaky, De Hell Centre; Redding, I Can’t Believe; Byke, Show National Pride; Kaseba, Take that to Court QC; Ras Kantu, Panorama 2010; Lypstick, All Politician Ah Friend; Sister Virtue, Stumbling Block; De Anchor, Paparazzi;  Eve, Ah De Poor; Lord Lee, Carnival is Alive; Mighty Bernie, Who Feels It Knows It; Slane, St Dominic; Lyricksman, Rasta Government;  Baldhead, Information; and The Sniper, Police Week.

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