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Mikey, Gwyneth take top honours
Michael ‘Mikey’ Mercer’s dominance of the 2012 Crop Over season was underlined yesterday when he took the 2012 Tune of the Crop title with ‘We Loose’, while veteran band leader, Gwyneth Squires, took top spot among the band leaders as the curtain came down on the season. Squires continued to impress with her creativity, winning Best Festival Designer, Best Band on the Road, Most Colourful Large Band, Large Band of the Year and Topical honours with her Barbados in Living Colour band.
After winning the Sweet Soca title and successfully defending his Party Monarch crown last Sunday, Mikey secured the People’s Monarch title on Friday and captured the Tune of the Crop yesterday.
Lil’ Rick took the joint second spot, with ‘Ah Like Muhself’ and ‘Ravers’.
Speaking to The Barbados Advocate after the announcement of yesterday’s results, the relaxed champion expressed his gratitude to the public for its support of the music of the season and staying true to his journey so far. He has created Crop Over history with his unprecedented four crowns in one season.
Mikey, who last won the Road March with his debut hit ‘Come Together’ in 2004 , thanked everyone associated with the production and delivery of his contributions for the season: “It is a great feeling. It is a humbling feeling. I thought it could have gone either way… Big respect to Soca Kartel, Team Mikey, [writer] Sanctuary and [producer] Chris Allman.”
Mikey stated that the hard work which he and his team had put into the season was paying off. “I honestly thought that ‘No Behaveya’ would have been the one, but I figured that the rain would have played a factor. I’m glad that the hard work is paying off. We started work the following week after Crop Over last year.
Every year you compete, you would like to win. I want to thank the whole of Barbados.”
He also mentioned the role of his band Soca Kartel and pushing the songs locally.
“Having a band plays a significant role as an outlet. Some people talk about songs and the difference hearing them live. The guys had a lot of confidence in both of the songs and gave a 110 per cent and this came out in the performances,” he noted.
“We will continue to push brand Mikey, and Soca Kartel. We will have to tackle Trinidad and try to keep the soca flag flying.”
He also had words of congratulation for those joining him on winner’s row this season: “Big up to Lil’ Rick for the Foreday Morning title and coming second in the Tune of the Crop Competition. Big up to Bag as well. They are keeping Barbados on the soca map.”
Lil’ Rick, who has released a record number of songs for this Crop Over season, won the inaugural Stag Jam Tune during the Roberts Manufacturing Foreday Morning Jam on Saturday with ‘The Contest’. There was a four-way tie for second place in that competition, with ‘Ah Like Muhself’, ‘Drop It’ and ‘We Want Drinkz’ by Lil’ Rick and Mikey’s ‘No Behaveya’ all finding favour with the Foreday revellers.
Meanwhile, the Pic-O-De-Crop crown was won by Red Plastic Bag on Friday night – his tenth in what is his 30th year in the business.
Meanwhile, Gwyneth Squires’ band, Barbados in Living Colour, was well received by the Grand Kadooment judges, winning five major categories.
Other notable awards went to Quincy Jones who took honours in the categories of Historical, Traditional, Most Colourful Small Band and Community Costume, Flagperson of the Year, Presentation of the Year and Small Band of the Year with the band Youth Explosion under the theme ‘Caribbean Integration: Ready More Than Ever’.
Betty West placed third in the Topical category and held onto the second spot in a number of categories including Festival Designer, Best Band on the Road, Presentation of the Year, Large Band of the Year. She also won the BMA Brands of Barbados Award (Large Band), while taking top honours in the Fantasy category with her ‘Iconic Bajan Music’ band.
There were reports of one major incident during yesterday’s event – a shooting in the Brighton area.