Remembering Gillian Nathaniel-Balintulo

I was just going to do a short post on Facebook. But I realised there was too much to say. One of the things I cherish about the way I grew up is that all I saw was that steelbands could be and do anything; choirs could be and do anything; and women could be …

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Becoming a Payge Turner | Discover Trinidad & Tobago

Back in October and November 2020, the young singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Paige Roopchan (stage name Payge Turner) was making her way through the early rounds of The Voice. Over the course of two articles, I talked first to Paige's family — Anika, Rianna, and Jacqueline Johnson — and then to Paige herself about her …

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Courtesy Jeanine De Bique

Jeanine De Bique: “It doesn’t matter where you come from” | Caribbean Beat

Jeanine De Bique, Trinidad-born classical singer, on the influence of her upbringing, and why Trinis “could do anything” — as told to Caroline Taylor in the November/December 2018 issue of Caribbean Beat I went St Gabriel’s RC School in San Fernando, and was in choir participating in the Music Festival and SanFest. I had a love for …

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An insider guide to Port of Spain, Trinidad | The Guardian (UK)

This guide was written as an assignment for The Guardian (UK), and published as An insider’s cultural guide to Port of Spain: steel, sass and sweat 1) Your city's culture in five words Steel, seascapes, sass, and sweat. 2) What sound defines your city? The hills and valleys of Port of Spain’s residential communities is a strange combination …

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Golden voices | Caribbean Beat

Originally written for and published in Caribbean Beat magazine in 2013 The half-century anniversary of Trinidad’s popular Marionettes Chorale It was all a little inevitable. My mother was the conductor, and my two godmothers were the executive management. Some of my best-established blackmailers are those who can recount me “conducting” from the audience as a pre-schooler, with …

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Heather Headly shines on

Written and published in CariVele Magazine for their special issue commemorating the 50th anniversary of Trinidad & Tobago's independence Any list of Trinidadians of distinction would be grossly incomplete if ever omitting Heather Headley. Easily one of the most driven and multi-talented of Trinidadian artists who have excelled abroad, she has already made history as a …

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Ella Andall: spirit dancer

Written and published in CariVele Magazine for their special issue commemorating the 50th anniversary of Trinidad & Tobago's independence  “I am not afraid to sacrifice for my fellow man Prepare me now to dance this dance, spirit hold my hand… I could make de grade, I could make de grade, I eh ‘fraid…!”             – Spirit Dancer Ella …

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Barter, or life has loveliness to sell…

One of my ongoing projects is digitising the Marionettes' almost 50-year historical archive. It's a project I seldom have adequate time for, but the Universe has cleared the way and I've been going through some decades' old footage. Much of it brings bittersweet memories. So many songs, events and performances brought me so much joy …

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