Warming up the chords
It was a tight morning of rehearsals for the Pic-O-De-Crop 19 today at the Combermere School Hall.
Among the semi-finalists to grace the stage and pump out their respective selections by 11 a.m. were Kid Site, Chrystal Cummins Beckles, Colin Spencer, and Troy Special, with Adrian Clarke already waiting in the wings to hit the stage after midday.
Band leader Keith Ellis, by all indications, was running a tight ship and no sooner had a song finished than the calypsonian vacated the stage to make way for his/her comrade, or opponent, as the case might be.
Come Friday night, many of them said, any card could play to determine who will meet King Popsicle in the finals ring, but each was confident that he or she had the right combination to make it there.
Cummins-Beckles said she had decided over the past year to make this an enjoyable one, no matter the outcome.
“I took a different approach this year and that is to start having more fun and stop taking competition so seriously, so I am good,” she stated.
She told Barbados TODAY she had spoken to Trinidadian icon Singing Sandra after hearing call-in programmes and other shows comparing her to her mentor, and the Trini had told her to do what she does best and sing about it — hence, her song Why Ya Tek Me Fa Sandra, Doah?
She said she was feeling good heading into Friday and was confident with her rehearsal this morning. The busy singer, writer, and arranger added that she has just been trying to pace herself this season, between performing with the seniors, playing in the band and working with the juniors, as well as writing and doing far more arrangements with the juniors than she has done in the past.
It has been a hectic season, she said, but added that she was ready for Friday.
So was Kid Site for his 21st time in the semi-finals.
“I got two good songs, so I feeling good with these two balanced songs,” said the former four-time king, who noted he was coming for crown number five.
Spencer said he was taking it easy and focusing on his rendition, which he admitted was his strength in competition.
“The music from what I am familiar with is quite good and I expect that this is going to be a very, very good show, extremely competitive and I am prepared to stick to my strength which is my vocal ability. I know that the Gym is generally about rendition,” he said, adding that there was not much more that could be done with arrangements at this stage so he was counting on hitting the mic hard and pressing through to the next round. (LB)