Machel Montano says he had no competition for Road March this year!

Socapro

Repect Our Soca Pioneers
Montano: No Road March competition for me
Published: Thursday, March 6, 2014
Richard Lord (T&T Guardian)

Machel celebrates 01.jpg
Machel Montano celebrates yesterday (Ash Wednesday) at the Queen’s Park Savannah stage by opening a bottle of champagne after the results were announced that he won the 2014 Road March title. PHOTO: CLYDE LEWIS

Reigning Power Soca Monarch Machel Montano says winning the 2014 Road March title was easy as there was no competition this year. He made the statement at a celebratory news conference on the stage at the Queen’s Park Savannah yesterday, after the results of his landslide victory was announced. His soca song entitled Ministry of the Road was played 374 times, the Trinbago Unified Calypsonians Organisation stated in release yesterday.

He copped the Soca Monarch crown with the same song and came in second with in the Groovy category with his song Happiest Man Alive. His nearest rival in the Road March race was Farmer Nappy (Darryl Henry) whose song Big People Party was played 59 times. Benjai’s (Rodney Le Blanc) Come Out to Play came in third, playing 39 times. Montano admitted his song was a political commentary. “It was a statement that needed to be made, a political statement representing the voice of the people.”

He said it was difficult to get ideas for the power soca as many composers are running out of ideas and ways to say the same things. “They are running out of ideas on how to say jump and wave,” he added. He admitted that “as early as three weeks before we didn’t see any competition. We had extra bullets in the chamber waiting to launch if anything had come up but we did not have a need to do that.”

Questioned about the quality of the power soca, Montano reiterated that “power soca has been dying.” That term was used very loosely because the situation was changing instantly. “One minute it is good, it is rich and it is ripe and the other minute it is like the desert.” He said people now want “something slower, something groovy. Groovy is more palatable, has more potential for the international market because people could relate to it.”

Commenting on the low spectator turnout at the Socadrome, Montano said “it did not have much people in here (Queen’s Park Savannah) either.” He said there were not many people looking at mas anywhere in the country. “If we mind our business they will find a way to make more people come out to watch mas, to make mas run on time, to make mas something disciplined,” he suggested. He said if people were getting fed up of his music he would not keep winning as it was the votes of the people who made him a winner.

Montano said he remains committed to working with all artistes, including Bunji Garlin, in the interest of advance the art form. He said he will keep on reaching out to every artiste. “I am being a responsible parent. I am communicating with my kids, it is up to them to respond,” Montano said. He said he was not on any publicity stunt as was being claimed in a posting on Bunji Garlin’s social media page. Montano said: “Now is the time for us to get together, everybody.”
 

Socapro

Repect Our Soca Pioneers
‘MOR’ FOR MACHEL
Power Soca Monarch wins 6th Road March title with ‘Ministry of Road’....... Montano 374, Farmer Nappy 59, Benjai 39
By Carla Bridglal carla.bridglal@trinidadexpress.com
Story Created: Mar 6, 2014 at 12:07 AM ECT


Machel celebrates 02.jpg
CELEBRATION TIME: Road March winner Machel Montano pops a bottle of champagne yesterday on the Queen’s Park Savannah stage following his media conference. –Photo: JERMAINE CRUICKSHANK

Minister of Road Machel Montano ought to be the happiest man alive. He’s now won six Road March titles.
But yesterday, he said he has no political aspirations.
“I’ll not say never, but politics has no interest to me. I don’t envy (politicians); they have it hard,” Montano told reporters at a media conference on the Queen’s Park Savannah stage, Port of Spain, yesterday.

Montano had a great season this year, winning the Power Soca Monarch title with “Ministry of Road” (MOR). He took second place in the Groovy Soca Monarch competition with “Happiest Man Alive”, and another of his 2014 hits was titled “Epic”.
Montano’s “Ministry of Road” was a runaway winner in this year’s Road March, played a total of 374 times, miles ahead of the 59 its runner-up, “Big People Party” by Farmer Nappy (Darryl Henry). Rounding off the top three with 39 was Benjai’s (Rodney Le Blanc) “Come Out To Play”.
“Ministry of Road”—the tune that helped Montano retain his Power Soca and Road March titles—was however a political statement, he said.
“It is a political statement representing the voice of the people. I was one of the people trapped (by the Port of Spain General Hospital) last year with the mas band Fantasy...and it was frustrating,” he said.

He was also passionate about the need to adapt as Carnival evolves and make it relevant to spectators and not just masqueraders.
“People are talking about the Socadrome—now, it comes just like Adam Smith Square—just another stop. Truly, it didn’t have much people (at the Savannah) either watching mas, period. Everywhere was slow; it didn’t have people watching mas, period. If we are minding our business, we will find a way to make people watch mas, make mas run on time, disciplined. I could be a minister if I wanted to, I could be Minister of the Road if I wanted to, but I already do that from my entertainment perspective. I do my best to make things better through my statements.
“I didn’t have to wait by the hospital this year, we flew across the stage; I was impressed by that and I think we have to give time to these changes, but we have to focus on it now, Ash Wednesday, and after.... If we don’t discipline our festival, don’t try to raise the standard of it, we are going to lose it slowly,” he said.

He also said the Power Soca genre was going through an ebb in its cycle, and it was becoming harder and harder to come up with original songs.
“I feel very fortunate this year. We worked hard and it was a tough year for power soca and road march ideas, even in our own camp, to come up with the formula. We looked at it early from two or three weeks out, and we didn’t see any competition.”
It is very difficult to write power soca, he said, and the people writing songs are running out of ideas to say the same things.
“Power soca is not that easy to construct—there are only so many ways to say ‘jump and wave’. Groovy is more palatable, has more potential for the international market because more people can relate to it. Power is more us and what we do,” he said.
The form may be dying, he said, but his team will continue giving masqueraders what they want to “fly” across the stage.
“The day we know they don’t want to fly and they want to drop on the ground and roll, or chip, we will know months coming in because this is our job and we do it well,” he said.
Coming in second in the Road March race was Farmer Nappy, Montano’s close performing friend.
“He is in our camp. I’ve always told him if I am first, you should be second,” he said, adding he had called him to take part in the media conference, but he was still sleeping off the season.
 

Socapro

Repect Our Soca Pioneers
Runner-up Farmer Nappy surprised
By —Michelle Loubon (T&T Express)
Story Created: Mar 6, 2014 at 12:04 AM ECT

FARMER-NAPPY-01.jpg

Farmer Nappy (Darryl Henry)—“Big People Party”—59 times
Via a telephone interview, Farmer Nappy said: “I leave everything up to hands of the Father. I was not expecting a Groovy to come up there. “Big People Party” placed third in the Groovy.
“Normally, Power is the Road March. It shows the music is quality music. I am dealing with grounds. People were coming up to me and saying thanks for the music. It was a song for the people. I leave everything in the hands of God.
“A big respect to Kerwin Du Bois (2014 Groovy Soca Monarch) for his feat. He showed at the end of the day, hard work pays off. He worked extremely hard. Kudos go to Red Boys from Barbados and Ghostwriters in St James.”

Benjai_04.jpg

Benjai (Rodney Le Blanc)—“Come Out To Play”—39 times
Via a telephone interview, Benjai said: “It’s a good feeling to know that. But I did not plan for it. The judges’ decision is final. Carnival is about expression. I was just expressing myself and “coming out to play”.
“I think instead of bashing the judges, we should say what we think needs to be done to help them improve. I had a late start for 2014 because of the crime level in Malabar. I will be doing my shows abroad and locally. That’s how I have been living for the past 12 years.”
—Michelle Loubon

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Btw what the hell happened to Bunji's "Truck On De Road" that a lot of folks were rating as the main road march contender to beat Machel's "MOR"? I would have at least expected it to come in 2nd position if it couldn't beat Machel's song on the road! Maybe Santiwah can explain what happened, where is he?
 

Mrs. Campbell

Girl Crush
Was he on bath salts or popped a molly when he gave this interview....

Now Bunji's post make sense, wasn't sure that "talk" was for...got it now.
 

TTCLIFEMEMBER

everyday working man
Machel is right that there was no real competition this year. I'm not even a Machel fan like that nobody was even coming close to beating "M.O.R." this year. If I'm keeping it real, this was a REALLY bad year for power soca in Trinidad. M.O.R. was big. Ram Jam was a big song too. But after that, pickings were real slim it seems.

I think Machel should change his statement to saying that power soca is dying in TRINIDAD. Greenz, Vincy and SLU were making strong power songs last year and I don't see this year being any different.

Why does Machel think other soca artists are his kids ? Is he high ?
 

Socapro

Repect Our Soca Pioneers
Machel is right that there was no real competition this year. I'm not even a Machel fan like that nobody was even coming close to beating "M.O.R." this year. If I'm keeping it real, this was a REALLY bad year for power soca in Trinidad. M.O.R. was big. Ram Jam was a big song too. But after that, pickings were real slim it seems.

I think Machel should change his statement to saying that power soca is dying in TRINIDAD. Greenz, Vincy and SLU were making strong power songs last year and I don't see this year being any different.

Why does Machel think other soca artists are his kids ? Is he high ?
I think he was happy and having champagne when he was interviewed but he seems to be serious about wanting to do a collaboration with Bunji.
 

Socapro

Repect Our Soca Pioneers
Machel rules the road
By ANDRE BAGOO Thursday, March 6 2014 (T&T Newsday)

Machel Montano 02.jpg

A NEW Cabinet portfolio has been permanently added to the Road March Hall of fame, with Machel Montano yesterday being announced as winner of the annual Carnival race by a landslide.


Montano’s “Ministry of Road” was played 374 times at judging venues, according to official results released by the Trinbago Unified Calypsonians’ Organisation (TUCO). But though he sometimes sounds like a politician in interviews, in an interview with Newsday yesterday, Montano said he has no intention of trying out politics.

“Nah, I don’t like to say never, but I have no interest in politics. That is a hard life. I don’t want to be like Jack Warner,” he said, at a press briefing called at the Queen’s Park Savannah.

Montano copped the crown with a song in which he alludes to the political desire for improvement of roadworks. The music video for the song presents Montano as a politician and, at times yesterday, as he celebrated victory, he waxed into high rhetoric.

Second place in the Road March competition was Darryl “Farmer Nappy” Henry with “Big People Party” which was tallied at 59. Rodney “Benjai” Le Blanc’s “Come Out To Play” came in third with 39 plays.

Kerwin Du Bois, who beat Montano in the Groovy Soca Monarch competition with “Too Real”, did not feature in the top three.

“We wish to congratulate Mr Machel Montano who dominated the competition with his song,”a Tuco spokesperson said in a faxed press release.

It was Montano’s sixth Road March win. He previously won in 1997 (“Big Truck”); 2006 (“Band of the Year” with Patrice Roberts); 2007 (“Jumbie”); 2011 (“Advantage”); and 2012 (“Pump Yuh Flag”).

Montano said, “This is Road March title number six? I did not stop to count, but I feel very fortunate this year. We worked hard and it was a tough year for power soca in terms of generating ideas. But even though it was tough in the beginning we got it done and it was easy to record this track and to win.”

Montano said his team had prepared to launch other Road March contenders at the last minute if any competition arose at the last minute, “but we did not see any”.

“We had extra bullets,” the soca singer said. “We had to put some things back in the sack.” He expressed the view that power soca is dying, but said this was part of a natural cycle of ebb and flow.

“Power soca has been dying just like calypso has been dying,” Montano said. “But it is a natural ebb and flow. It is very difficult to write power soca and the people who are writing power soca are running out of ideas. People now want something slower, something groovy.” He said the thought process behind “Ministry of Road” was a decision to make a statement about power soca. He said the song was “a tribute” to power soca.

“This was a salute to power soca,” he said. “It may be dying but we are going to try to keep it alive.” He said things are on a “continuum” and the past and present exist at once.

On second-place “Farmer Nappy”, Montano counted him as being among his camp.

“I’ve always told Farmer, ‘I in front and you should be second because you are in my camp’,” Montano said. Asked how he responded to the views of some that people are fed up of Machel Montano, the soca singer said this view was a minority view as he keeps on winning competitions.

“They could say they are tired of me all they want,” Montano said. “I am here to stay.” He expressed satisfaction with the Parade of the Bands route on Carnival Tuesday, noting things flowed smoothly at the Queen’s Park Savannah. He said last year he had to wait four hours with a band to cross the stage, but this was not the case this year.

“I was impressed with that,” he said. “The Socadome was just like another stage, like Adam Smith Square.”He called for the festival to be disciplined. Montano opened bottles of champagne and sipped with his mother, Elizabeth Montano, at yesterday’s briefing. “I’ve been drinking champagne for the last three days,” the soca singer said.
 

Noddy

Registered User
I think he was happy and having champagne when he was interviewed but he seems to be serious about wanting to do a collaboration with Bunji.
During his set at WE he said the same things about the other artistes being his kids and even during his interview at Soca Monarch.

As much as he is saying he may want to do a collaboration with Bunji, I was hearing that he was upset at coming on 2nd at WE so he ran on long and the fete ended without us seeing Bunji or Fayeann. That wouldn't be a very good start to a collaborative effort
 

Socapro

Repect Our Soca Pioneers
During his set at WE he said the same things about the other artistes being his kids and even during his interview at Soca Monarch.

As much as he is saying he may want to do a collaboration with Bunji, I was hearing that he was upset at coming on 2nd at WE so he ran on long and the fete ended without us seeing Bunji or Fayeann. That wouldn't be a very good start to a collaborative effort
True. We will see if his proposed collaborations with both Destra and Bunji happens this year.
 
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