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Recently crowned Calypso Monarch Grantley “Ipa” Constance is dispelling any notions from critics that the title does not belong to him.

Having been in the finals almost every year since 1982, and until now unsuccessful in his quest for the crown, Grantley I-pa Constance has reaped his reward. At Dimanche Gras, last Sunday, July 9, I-pa fought off a competitive bunch of calypsonians to take his first crown as National Calypso King.{{more}}

With his renditions “Can’t tell the Comrade So” and “Can’t treat Calypso like that” the On Tour Calypso tent band leader proved to be the judges’ favourite over two-time monarch Princess Monique and six-time Road March winner, former monarch and long time calypsonian Cornelius “Poorsah” Williams who had to settle for second and third places respectively.

Fourth place was a tie between Ebony ad Abbey Jah, sixth place went to new comer Ron B, seventh Azara, eight position Little Bit, ninth The Man Age, followed by Dwighty.

According to I-pa, this year was just his time to take the crown.

Commenting on the third place position of crowd favourite, Poorsah, with his popular hit “Inside Job” I-pa said, “Poorsah’s song was popular, but I don’t think it had the cutting edge, and I think that the judges felt the same way. Coming out of the semi-final I was told that I was the person who was leading. He is a very good calypsonian who sings well, but in any competition they would always have people who would be dissatisfied. If Poorsah had gotten the monarch there would be people, who are my fans, who would say I had deserved it.”

According to the reigning monarch it was only by chance that he competed in this year’s event. “I wasn’t really going to compete this year as I have always entered and have been given a hard time by the judges,” I-Pa told Searchlight.

Only penning his winning provocative socio-political commentary three weeks before competition, Ipa said his songs came from comments and advice of people.

“People have been confronting calypsonians about being bought out by the government, because they claim we were looking at issues and turning a blind eye. People were harassing me, how come you are not singing on Labour party and calypsonians were singing on NDP when they were in government,” I-pa said.

The calypso king expressed: “It’s the people who really wrote the song, once you are touching base with the people you get a feel of what is happening and you put it together but it’s really their song.”

I-pa however, had concerns which are shared by other calypsonians over the lack of support they have been receiving from bands.

Bands, he said, have been resentful of calypsonians in recent years, and have been hampering the selection of some good calypsoes for the calypso finals.

“The quality of calypso has always been good but maybe the musical part has fallen off. I have listened to some very good calypsos that got left out this year because they didn’t have the right treatment of music and the proper accompaniment to enhance the whole calypso, so they got over-looked,” he said.

Already preparing to defend his crown, the calypso monarch is on his toes, already putting notes on paper for next year’s competition.

“I have a song named “Make a Pledge of Faith” written already. This is dealing with the Christian religion,” I-pa said.

According to the Calypso King he would not have been able to take the crown and contribute to the calypso arena over the years without the help of people like Willis Williams, Adrian Bailey, Carlos Sampson, Olson Peters, Cherry Ince, Becket, Frankie Mc Intosh and the On Tour Calypso tent members.

“Everyone who has played a significant role in my development over the years I want to give them thanks,” I-pa concluded.