“Sweet” Haitian Musician Replaces Wyclef’s Presidential Star Power

Michel “Sweet Micky” Martelly hopes his fame propels him to Haiti’s presidency, nbcmiami reports.

There is a world-renowned musician running for president in Haiti, but it’s not the one you think. Wyclef is out. Enter Sweet Micky.

Michel Martelly is one of the most famous people in Haiti for his musical accomplishments and has even been featured on some of Wyclef’s musical projects.

The Palm Beach Post once described Sweet Micky as “..the charismatic, bawdy rude boy” that has been a superstar of Haitian konpa music for nearly 20 years, is Martelly’s alter-ego, the larger-than-life figure who pack concerts, dance halls and city streets during carnival.”

Check out YouTube for Sweet Micky videos and you will get the picture mighty fast.

But “Sweet Micky” has higher hopes than a few gold records. He wants to bring his home country back from the brink after the devastating natural disasters that have hit Haiti. And he wants to do it as president. “I have gathered hundreds of thousands of people around the same music. Now I want to gather them around the same flag,” Martelly said.

It will take more than lyrics and fame to get the island nation on the track to financial stability. The poverty stricken nation was crippled even more by a major earthquake in January, which has left more than 1.3 million residents still without homes.  

Money raised to help people hit the hardest has not made it to those that need it, Martelly said, and that’s the government’s fault. He said changing the culture of government and getting the nearly 80 percent of Haitians out of work employed will be his top priorities if elected. “The past governments have been begging for money, but money is not the problem,” Martelly contends. “We need to structure ourselves where we can be self sustaining. We need training. Keep your money.”

That’s serious talk for the man known for the past 22 years as the controversial “Sweet Micky.”

Considered the pioneer of compas, a Haitian-style infusion of jazz and African rhythms, Sweet Micky has been known to strip naked while he performs and drink in public. Martelly says that guy won’t be heading Haiti.

“Sweet Micky is crazy, but he was able to reach out to everyone with his music,” he said. “Sweet Micky is allowing Michel Martelly to run for the presidency.”

Martelly announced in July that he would throw his name into the hat for Haiti’s November presidential elections, but his news was quickly overshadowed by rumors of the more popular stateside musical candidate, Wyclef.

The two collaborated on “The Carnival,” a song on Wyclef’s first solo project Wyclef Jean Presents The Carnival featuring the Refugee All Stars. The musicians have been close friends since.

The 49-year-old thinks he and Wyclef, a close friend, are very alike in ideology, which should help him grab supporters upset the former Fugee member has been disqualified. “Him not being there brings his people to me because I am the only other guy representing change,” Martelly said. “That’s the only reason why I am running.”

For the original report go to http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/politics/Sweet-Haitian-Musician-Replaces-Wyclefs-Presidential-Star-Power-103363544.html

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