Seize The Opportunity

Veteran calypsonian and mentor of Barbados TODAY’S Crop Over Superstar competition Red Plastic Bag has called on local artistes to put in their bid to become the island’s first online monarch.

Calypsonian RPB.
Calypsonian RPB.

With just four days to go before entries close for submissions, RPB says he’s excited about the competition and insists that no one should miss out on the chance to share and develop their music.

The ten-time calypso monarch says he didn’t have a second thought about mentoring the competition, which he suggests will breathe new creativity into Crop Over, as well as bring new talent to the fore.

“It is a wonderful opportunity for artistes, especially young artistes to expose their work. I think the platform is an excellent platform for the promotion of our music and I am all for doing anything to promote the music of Barbados and the Caribbean in general.”

The competition, which was launched mid-June invites Barbadians 18 years and older, at home and abroad, to pen a song and submit an audio
or video recording.

Members of the public will vote once for each entry via Facebook or through texting. The entrant that receives the most votes will be awarded the title.

Bag, who has been lobbying for more recognition, for the island’s artistes, adds that the contest is a ‘win-win’ for them and the summer festival.

“I think over the years we have not really done enough to promote our music and so very often we complain about lack of exposure. I think this is a wonderful opportunity for exposure and I want to encourage calypsonians and artistes to get involved and put their music out there. “Everybody can be a winner in this competition.”

The entertainer, who has been in the business for more than three decades, says it’s noteworthy that the competition will take calypso beyond the stage to the social media platform, which has millions of users. This, he said was an avenue that serious artistes should exploit to market their talent on the global stage.

“It’s not just on radio or on TV or on stage, it is really a platform that exposes you to the world pretty much.”

“The fact that BT has wide readership and is getting a lot of attention all over certainly offers young artistes an opportunity to have their music exposed.”

On Monday, Culture Minister Stephen Lashley officially launched the competition, which has
been strongly endorsed by the National Cultural Foundation.

“This particular competition preserves the calypso art form in a very creative way utilizing the modern technology that we have.К You can’t go wrong when you incorporate social media which is really the biggest avenue to reach persons in Barbados and across the world.”

RPB like Minister Lashley has called for the competition to continue, with the expectation that it would get bigger and better.

“I think that this is a competition that should be here to stay. Artistes will benefit, the festival will benefit, I would like to see this continue and young artistes involved.”

Entries closed on July 6 paving the way for the preliminaries where the public will be able to view all the videos and vote for their favourites for the semifinal round.

The winner will be announced at the Pic-o-de-Crop Finals on Saturday, August 1 and will take home $15,000 in cash plus free car and home insurance for one year compliments Consumers’
Guarantee Insurance (CGI)

A cash prize of $7,500 and $5,000 will also be awarded for the second and third place winners.

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