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If You Made it To Machel Monday, You Must’ve Seen This…

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On Monday, the energy of Trinidad lingered West. From parts South, East, North and even Tobago,   die hard Machel Montano fans filtered to the Hasely Crawford Stadium for yet another year of an event that’s always extraordinary, even when the lineup isn’t ridiculously ‘international.’

Machel Montano and French Montana on stage on Monday night. PHOTO: Jermaine Cruickshank. 

This year, the sole international act promoted was French Montana. The entertainer who’s been providing humanitarian relief in Uganda with recent efforts to assist his countrymen and women in Morroco launched, touched down in T&T on Monday evening it appeared, and took to Instagram to share the fact that local Immigration officials had ben awaiting his arrival on the tarmac where his private jet landed ahead of his concert appearance. On Monday night, the production of the event, which has drawn thousands over the years, seemed to have strengthened its focus on the promotion of love and unity. There was also a very apparent effort by Machel to introduce the emerging Soca artistes to the people. A performance by Chutney Soca Monarch winners, Nishard Mayrhoo and Neval Chatelal offered patrons a taste of the Indo-Trinbagonian culture- an aspect of the Carnival flavor that’s not always highlighted as much as it really should be.

Nailah, one of T&T’s fastest rising stars, on stage with Jamaican entertainer, Shenseea.
PHOTO: Jermaine Cruickshank.

A stage show that’s always eye-catching, the event this year boasted massive cultural displays from the iconic Mas creator, Peter Minshall who has teamed up with Tunapuna based, Exodus Steel Orchestra to produce “The Eyes of God,” for the road in Carnival 2018. In December, Minshall stressed that he is not bringing a band of his own for Carnival. On stage at Machel Monday however, his masterful creations were larger than life and spoke volumes for his creative mind- certainly still incredibly coherent and full of exuberance. The ‘Soca Kingdom’ themed event was nothing like last year’s show, and while some felt it lacked something, others who live for ‘local’ appreciated the introduction and focus of artistes like M1, Turner, Erphaan Alves who Montano credited as one of his songwriters, Patrice Roberts who thanked Machel for his steadfast training of which she was a student, Nailah Blackman who appeared with Jamaica’s Shenseea, two time International Soca Monarch King, Voice, Machel Montano Music Academy winners, Abdiel Matamora of Trinidad and Tobago and  St. Lucia’s Lu City- a duo that consists of Tyler Auguste and Jean Farrah, who collaborated with Montano on a track called, “Let It Go,” among other young acts.

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Bunji, Fay Ann Stay Winning. Mas Maker, Promo Outfit…Who’s Counting The Coins?

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Fay Ann’s business exploits now include mas making. She recently revealed a collaboration with Canadian mas bands SEMBA and Atlantic Mas.

While the rest of us are out here looking for the next party to attend, Fay Ann Lyons and her hubby of 12 years, Bunji Garlin stay winning, raking in the cash and hustling to the bank, no doubt. The duo is set to deliver another epic J’ouvert themed experience on June 3rd in St. Jospeh, Trinidad, and by all accounts relayed to Ebuzztt by Garlin himself, this one’s gonna be off the chain.

In 2017, Bunji and Fay Ann delivered ‘Santimanitay’ for the very first time at Ortinola Estate- a lush, ambient venue, deep in the St. Jospeh valley. It was the perfect venue for a J’ouvert style fete that featured the likes of fire breathing blue devils, painted bodies and not to mention, performances from Slaughter, Blaxx, Fay Ann, Super Blue and of course, Bunji himself. The event was indeed an epic and memorable one, leaving many excited for what was in the pipeline for the year ahead. During carnival 2018, the Alvarez’s once again delivered ‘Santimanitay’ on J’ouvert morning, taking patrons away from the traditional street venues in Port-of-Spain and into the cosy, meadow-like atmosphere they’d introduced us to, a few months prior.

“We’ll have a nice line up of artistes this time again, including myself, Fay Ann, Preedy Ms. Alysha, Revelation and a new artiste called, Jubee, along with a lot of other surprises,” Garlin told EBUZZTT. He said tickets have been going pretty well with just a limited amount still available from committee members. The event starts at 3am on June 3rd and will end at around 9am. “It’s a breakfast inclusive, cooler J’ouvert fete, but we want to let patrons know that coolers must not have any glass bottles inside and they must be in before 5am,” said Garlin.

To purchase tickets, interested patrons can call : 687-6996/ 733-2130/ 719-2284.

We suspect ‘Santimanitay 2018’ will be epically enjoyable. Question is, where will you be?

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Soca Producer to Machel, Bunji, Nadia Re-Enters Performance Arena.

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There’s nothing in the entertainment rulebook that says a music producer cannot be an artist. You’ve heard the name Juelio Nelson, haven’t you? The young, Moruga Trinidad native is one of Trinidad and Tobago’s fastest rising music producers, having worked with Machel Montano, Bunji Garlin, Superblue for whom he produced the hit single, Fantatsic Friday,’ as well as other top shelf artistes like, Nadia Batson, Blaxx, JW & Blaze, Olatunji and most recently, Buffy. He’s no joke. Juelio is however much more than meets the eye.

Sharp vocal ability to say the least, accompanied by the love and encouragement of many of the artistes that he’s worked with, Juelio is hitting the ground hard, unleashing a new single that sits properly beside that of Buffy on a riddim he created called the Republic Riddim. “Before I got into music production, I was a vocalist,” he explained, noting that as a young man growing up in Trinidad and Tobago’s entertainment arena, he had competed in a number of competitions, among them 12 and Under and even the Junior Soca Monarch. He admits to having been sidetracked a bit when he got into music production though, taking on that career path wholeheartedly. “A lot of artistes kept telling me it was time to get back into singing. Nadia Batson was a huge inspiration for my return,” he said, explaining that Buffy too, pushed him to deliver a track on the new riddim.

The new single is called “Stuck on You” and was written by Juelio, making it clear that he’s pretty much an all rounder in the business of entertainment. “I think it’s really important for me to come out of my comfort zone- get back into the music and deliver music that will speak for itself,” said Juelio. With plans to release another single in the coming weeks, the music producer who is now working arduously on being an
artiste the world will enjoy, is pushing full speed ahead, fearless, optimistic about the future. “ I know I have what it takes. I just need to show the world,” he said.

Supporters of the art form are encouraged to check out the efforts of this amazing Caribbean talent on Instagram @ juelio_artiste_producer.

 

PRESS RELEASE – ETCETERA The Company.

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