Findley Jeffery – “the Scholar”, according to the judges, topped the list of performances among the nineteen calypsonians who braced the stage at last Sunday’s Melody/Papitette Calypso Semi Finals held at the Victoria Park in St. Andrews.
The veteran calypsonian, one of two in Grenada who can boast of having seven titles or more beneath his belt, amassed a total of 503 points with his two selections – “Clip my Wings” and “Take Jab.” Scholar’s performance was done with one of his legs in cast and this was not part of his props. He told the crowd that he actually damaged his leg days before the semi final, but refused to let it stand as a reason for missing out on Carnival 2016.
Scholar’s closest rival, according to the judges, was Carriacou resident Brendon Mckie alias “Killa B”. He amassed a total of 496 points with his selections “Dying and Living” and “Take a Stand.”
The third spot went to Kelly Clyne “Rootsman Kelly”, the man who finished third in the 2015 Calypso finals. His selections this year led by “Give Me My Flowers Before I Die,” amassed a total of 480 points.
Another veteran calypsonian Elimus “Inspector” Gilbert was the fourth highest finisher last Sunday with 479 points followed by Sheldon Douglas with 475.
A man who is no stranger to the big stage but never captured a title, “Teacher Eddie” was the sixth finisher with 466 points followed by Micah Joseph “Baracka”, who was the third place finisher in the 2015 calypso finals; he amassed 460 points.
Among the other artistes sealing their places in the 2016 calypso finals were, Sean Niles alias “Sour Serpent” who had to settle for a tie with Baracka on 460 points, Laura Richardson alias “Laura Lisa” with 453 points and in the standby position Allan Gaskin, “Allan G” with 452 points.
All nine finalists would be vying for that coveted title, the 2016 National Calypso Monarch, come Dimanche Gras night August 7th at the National Stadium.
The reigning calypso Monarch Edison “Ajamu” Mitchell, on the other hand, would be looking to create history by becoming the first calypsonian to clinch the double digit mark with the number of calypso titles to his name by winning his tenth title this year. The challenge he faces this year is an up-hill one, as most of the finalists are at the top of their game. However with less than a week to go, many wonder how much time he has to do the necessary catching up.