Ready for phase two

Troy special eager to take on pic-o-de-crop semis

by Donna Sealy

Calypsonian Troy Troy Special Harper is ready for phase two.

After more than 10 years of knocking on the door of the Pic-O-De-Crop semi-finals the member of the Cave Shepherd All Stars Calypso Tent is ready to go.

“It feels good [to be in the semi-finals] because it’s been 15 years and I’ve been to the semis once. Had some times I figured I should have been there but it didn’t work out, but this year I think it was unanimous and I’m very happy because I put in the extra work.

“I didn’t even bother with the party, just got together with [Mr.] Dale. I already had the AA song pretty much finished, I just wanted him to look over it and he put in one or two lines,” he told Barbados TODAY ahead of rehearsing with the Festival Band at the Major Noott Hall at Combermere School early this afternoon.

“The second song Undertaker, he did a lot of work on and I really want to thank Dale because that’s my good buddy for years and he really came through for me and both have been working our really well in the tent and we’ve been having a fantastic season.

“As a matter of fact, everybody in All Stars has been having a fabulous season and I’m happy that we have so much in the semi-finals and hopefully by the grace of God we could make history and go to the finals because I think that each and everyone of us deserves to be there from the bottom of my heart, once we go and put down a top show on Friday,” he said.

He said he did get frustrated during those years but he kept at it and this year he told his tent mates that the response he got from the public to his songs was inspiration enough to continue.

“It feels good to get to stage one but if I didn’t get there, the response from the audience this time around was encouragement and motivation enough for me to continue,” he said.

Harper added that the ideas for this year’s songs came during the last Crop-Over season.

“I came up with it after looking at Popsicle and what he did, I said I’m an actor and why can’t I go a different direction this time around. This time around my fellow actors, Crispen [Hackett] and Leon [Philllips] . . . just before our first Crop-Over show at [Sandiford Centre]. I sang it but I had it as ‘I done gambling’ instead of drinking but both Crispen and Leon said to me gambling might be too complicated you have to talk about poker, tonk, and all the different card games, so why not go with something more simple like drinking, that’s when I went home and rewrote it and tried to put as much humour as I could in it as well as seriousness. I have to give them some credit. I find that’s what’s working for the public and its working for me” he said.

One of the things that Harper looks forward to every Crop-Over is being with his tent mates, including Colin Spencer and Adrian Clarke.

“We have so much fun and it’s a real family, Ronnie, I look forward to the season not just to be on stage but to be around these guys because let me tell you something, you think you hear these jokes on stage? Wunna does miss half the show backstage, the real show is backstage… I love them and I’m looking forward to Friday. It feels good to here amongst the guys and I know that its been some difficult years for me thing works out and I hope that everything works out,” Harper said.

Between tonight and Friday, he would be “just chilling” and does not plan to do any thing differently.

“I sing pretty much for a living in hotels, etc. I just need to remember what I’m singing, remember my words and do my thing. I’m not taking anything for granted and I’m very serious. I realise I have an opportunity and I don’t want to let down anybody so I’m just going to relax and keep going through my words in my head and leave the rest to the judges come Friday. If I put down the show I think I’m capable of putting down I can go to stage two, as the Prime Minister would say,” he said.

Harper said he would definitely be back in 2013.

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