Calypso Prince becomes a King: Jalen “Yellowman” Fredericks

11102644_1053846194629482_9164697471820974965_nAldeth Lewin writes that, in a major upset of youth versus stalwart, first-time adult calypsonian Jalen “Yellowman” Fredericks took the 2015 Carnival Caplyso Competition crown last weekend in the Virgin Islands.

[Jalen “Yellowman” Fredericks] competed in the junior calypso competition for years, and won the crown several times, the most recent title was when he won the secondary division in 2013.

The field was wide open Saturday night when the competition began as reigning champion for the past two years, Patrick “DeSoljah” Farrell decided not to compete against the 10 other singers that made it out of the competition tents earlier this month. Farrell had been good enough to unseat the long-reigning Campbell “King Kan” Barnes in 2013, and with him out of the line up, many assumed Barnes would regain his crown. But Fredericks surprised everyone with his political commentary, humor and sing along party beats that won over the judges.

When he first walked out on stage, he acknowledged that it was his first time competing in the adult calypso competition. “I’m with the big boys now,” he said. “I decided to throw my hat in the ring for the V.I. Calypso King. You know me and my party beat, well tonight that’s taking a seat.”

He is known for his upbeat and fun-filled Carnival party songs, and his first song “No Party Song” was his first time entering into the world of political commentary on the calypso stage.

He sang about how he cannot sing another party song while gas prices are high, government officials are corrupt and crime is rampant. He touched on the recent arrest of former attorney general Vincent Frazer, former Gov. John deJongh Jr.’s failure to pay for security enhancements at his home, and a multi-million library built in Tutu that always seems to be shut down.

Not long out of school himself, he urged the Education Department to bring in agricultural education and, with a picture of education commissioner designee Sharon McCollum behind him, pleaded: “Help us please Big Mama.”

In his second song, “Tonight,” he returned to his party beat and had the crowd singing along to the chorous: “Tonight, Tonight, leh we’ll party. Tonight, tonight, leh we feel irie. Forget your troubles, let’s be happy. It’s Carnival here in Rock City.” [. . .]

For full article, see http://virginislandsdailynews.com/news/calypso-prince-becomes-a-king-1.1871059

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