by Wade Gibbons
Some fans are now calling him Mi-kia. Mikey’s Party Monarch victory at Bushy Park, St. Philip last night, along with earning a brand new Kia motorcar, was perhaps the easiest decision any Crop-Over panel of judges has had to make in a very long time.
Mikey had earlier won the Sweet Soca competition and another Kia.
His triumph, following a dynamic performance of No Behaviour, was one well deserved. The selection has an infectious melody and he would have scored heavily in this category as well as with his overall stage performance. The song’s arrangements lend to the building of a crescendo with a call and response element that, as any party song should, encourages instinctive crowd participation. He was simply on top of his game.
Mikey, who tallied 422 points, has come a long way since his grass skirt posse days and is now wiping the floor with some of the same artistes to whom he provided the services of a prop. He just keeps getting better and better.
L’il Rick’s Drop It and 408 points got him second position which was a fair result. His performance was also dynamic but his effort to maintain his balance and sing while being lifted through the crowd during the latter part of his presentation resulted in the band and him going their separate ways at one stage.
It was unfortunate that he collected his prize and stormed off the stage without congratulating the winner when that announcement came, but one would hope that it was a sudden call of nature, rather than a petulant reaction to Mikey’s victory. There was no mistaking, though, the profanities that came from some of the imbeciles in the crowd who supported L’il Rick and thought that hurling insults was a necessary show of loyalty to their man.
Edwin’s Mmmm was some distance off from the front-runners, copping 348 points. He gave a good performance and perhaps only the judges can say what led to the gap of 74 points and 60 points respectively between him and the top two finishers.
Khiomal had arguably one of the better presentations of all the artistes during his Get Loose with his “robots” getting out of their mechanical state and getting loose. But with only five points being on offer here, he would have had to score heavily in the other categories to break into the top three. He didn’t.
Whether it was divine intervention or judges simply hoping that perhaps some blessing might come their way if they rewarded Slim Jim for mentioning God’s name a few times in Worship Yahweh, Brother Leacock’s fifth place installment was mightily unholy. The Party Monarch competition, indeed, Crop-Over, is a secular festival, and calling God’s, Jesus’, Yahweh’s, Jehovah’s, Allah’s or Jah’s name a few times is not going to change that.
This is Party Monarch for heaven’s sake! Who is going to party to Worship Yahweh? Angels?
Others in the mix who all performed creditably were Blood with This Is The One, Villain with Pumping All Day, Khiomal and Peter Coppin with Pull It Up, TC with Is Time Again and Rameses with Addicted. The latter’s stage package which encompassed many elements of local culture was arguably the best on display during the competition. Fireworks and confetti were used liberally by basically every act during the show and added to the spectacle.
The backing band was fantastic.