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Is ah no show wid-out CP

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Once upon ah time was ah very good time. We didn’t have ah hell of ah lot, but times were good: No Barrels, No Western Union, yet we had we good Christmas! Dey was no Grinch to spoil Christmas like Elect-shuns and Elect-shun Pity-shun. Genuine love was all around, violence is so rampant, we now domesticating it foh export to Embassies. Ah recal when de Murder record was one ah year, and one morning three fellars were hanged foh ah murder at Lyric Cinema! Dey was just One Radio Stay-shun in T’n’T and we were never short of up-to-date information. Today we have Radio Stay-shuns to give-way, gossiping from six to six, 24-7. We moved from De-pen-dance to In-deep-pen-dance. But as ah said, Vincy always had Good Christmas.

Vincy Christmas bears wid it ah spirit dat relates to de season, and whatever we did/do, whether it was Novena Church Service, Serenading, Caroling or Nine Mornings, dey was ah consciousness dat we celebrating de birth of Jesus. Ah like to think of Nine Mornings as an evolution; soon it will be referred to as de “Christmas Rev-all-yuh shun,” next ah ULP or NDP Nine Mornings Rev-all-yu-shun. Slowly one can feel de vibes as de present Nine Mornings Committee keep punctuating de decades: “We will be celebrating de 20th anniversary of Nine Mornings next year.” Bob Marley saw it as clear as crystal: “Everybody want to reap de corn!”

Quite possibly, Novena and Nine Mornings evolved from de same Spiritual Agent. De commonalty is de number Nine, as in Nine Mornings before Christmas. While de religious among us took to de church foh spiritual strength, others found physical NRG in walking, lime-in, window shopping, swimming, street jumping, street party/concert, fete/ dancing. However dey’s dat constant that mek it unique, the time of day, it’s ah “Pre Dawn Ting” and in Vincy we say: “fore-day morning!”

Nobody knows foh sure when it came, where it came from and who brought it. Everybody came and met Nine Mornings. My grandparents who would ah bin 150 years today, told me about Nine Mornings in dey time, my mother who would ah bin 100, told me about her Nine Mornings. And me in me 70s came and got me belly-full ah Nine Mornings. Nuff respect to present day ‘movers and makers’, de likes of John Horne, Blazer Williams, Patches Knights, Sailor Bailey, Allan Palmer, El Grupo Amistad, René Baptiste, Michael Peters, Lennox Bowman, Bamba Providence and all de others before dem, who met ah Nine Mornings, saw beauty and value in its survival, made humble contributions, that has secured de direction of dis truly unique festival.

From all eye witness accounts, last Sunday Night’s launch of de 2017 Nine Mornings celebrations was quite good. It was broadcast on radio, but ah was able to hear it live from my porch. In SVG, whether it’s ah Gospel Fete, Pull-it-to-kill meeting, Block-O, Mini Van or whatever, loud noise is accepted as good sound. De show went well, presentations from de various rural communities giving ah taste of “what to expect” foh dis year’s Nine Mornings. Good singing, to good local compositions. Sulle’s ‘Nine Mornings’ still doing well; ah like de group from Fancy singing Tajo’s “Fancy Nine Mornings” done in Ex-Tempo. De Bowman Brothers were well represented by Lennox and Rollie. Carlton “CP “ Hall de King of Vincy Paranda was conspicuously absent. Foh de last 25 years CP’s contribution, starting wid “Ah Love Me Christmas”, has been ah show by itself. It’s unpardonable to open or close de show widout him once he’s around. De Committee made ah Nine Mornings error when dey tried to replace CP wid Luta. Sorry, but his song was not appropriate. Christmas is not ah Jump up and wave ting, Christmas is “Christ Mass,” and not Vincy Mas better get dat right eh! And wid dat is gone ah gone again.

One Love Bassy

Bassy Alexander is a land surveyor, folklorist and social commentator.

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