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Andre Tanker: Press

St Joseph Convent (San Fernando) took first place in the Junior Calypso Chorale at the 29th Music Festival held at the Naparima Bowl, San Fernando, on March 1. Their spirited rendition of the late Andre Tanker’s Ben Lion, complete with growl for added effect, earned the school the top spot. Cowen Hamilton Secondary School placed second with its patriotic rendition of Trini to the Bone, another Rudder composition, done jointly with Carl Jacob. Couva’s Holy Faith Convent secured third birth with Rudder’s 1986 Dimanche Gras winner The Hammer. Dr Jan Hamilton, adjudicator for the afternoon, stated: “I have one comment for everyone…in the verses try to get the text out as clearly, and in the chorus.” In the Schools Folksong category although Holy Faith Convent and Naparima Boys’ College Indian Cultural Club place first and second, respectively, neither would be moving on in the competition.

The students of Holy Faith sang Pack she back to she Ma, a ditty about a very lazy woman named Jessie, who could neither cook or clean, and was constantly damaging her husband’s clothes. Naparima Boys sang Ranga Bara Say which was about the festival of Holi. Dr Hamilton said: “It was very exciting to hear two contrasting types of folk music from your culture and I appreciate the effort you put into it. “There was nice characterisation and good diction but you both need to pay attention to your intonation as you get into the song. “To the Naparima College, be sure you are really ready to breathe together and get started. “I suggest you test the hall before you perform and place the accordion-like instrument away from the hall so it does not drown out the vocals.”

CD Review
CD honours Tanker for his gift to the world
Mr Muzik
Published: 25 Sep 2009
Mr Muzik
The best way you can pay tribute to the late great Andre Tanker, and thank him for the music, is to buy the latest Andre Tanker CD, called Live. This CD contains ten tracks by the master composer/musician which are all delightful.The presentation of the CD is truly professional and Mr Muzik is always thrilled when things are done properly.
There’s much calypso soul food on this CD to satisfy any hunger, all done in Andre’s inimitable style—driving bass lines and that raspy folk voice that blends so well with the music. On this CD, produced by Andre Tanker Music Ltd, you’ll find perennial favourites Forward Home, Sayamanda, Basement Party, Thanks for the Music, Calypso Soul Food and Here, among other songs. I suspect that given Andre’s vast repertoire we can expect another follow-up CD, with my favourite Morena Osha.
But listening to this CD, Andre Tanker Live, you get the feeling he’s on stage with the band Contraband. Andre’s spirit is alive; Andre lives—so much so, it’s a bit scary to me. One of my bitter disappointments about Andre Tanker’s music, so rich and filled with joy, is that it was never taken to the world in a big way. No doubt, he was a champion of world music. Although Caribbean-born, Andre belonged to the world. You know Mr Muzik does not encourage lip service, go out and buy this CD, a collector’s item now on sale all record shops.
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