Festival Fever: Calypso16th July, 2014
It's a celebration here in Barbados. It's our Crop Over time and what's Crop Over without Calypso! You may be wondering what Calypso really is. The derivation of calypso rhythms were originated by the first African slaves to Barbados and other Caribbean islands in the 17th century. The artform Calypso, is a unique form of music that is an integral part of the Barbadian cultural landscape. Most calypso music usually involves some social commentary, typically a humorous satire on social and political events, with an infectious beat. Other calypsos are strictly for "wukking up" and Bajans love to "wuk up".This is a dance where you only move your waistline in a circular motion and move to the beat of the music.
Calypso became highly organized in Barbados in 1974, with the revival of the Crop Over Festival. Today, Calypso is an integral part of the festival, with the Pic-O-De-Crop Calypso Competion being one of the most popular events. During Crop Over, several calypso tents (organized groups of calypsonians) perform a few days weekly. Eighteen of these calypsonians go forward to the semi-finals of the competition, with eight advancing to the finals to challenge the previous year's monarch.