McIntosh: No ‘laptop singing’ in finals
Published: Sat, 2011-02-26 22:53
Michelle Loubon
McIntosh: No ‘laptop singing’ in finals | The Trinidad Guardian

Two-time Soca Monarch champion Ronnie McIntosh is adamant there should be no “laptop singing” in the finals of the International Soca Monarch competition on Fantastic Friday. He said while liming backstage at the Arima Velodrome with his friend/fellow artiste Keith Sutherland (Ajala), he had noticed the gravitation toward usage of laptops. “I think a person should not have a voice coming through a laptop. It’s kind of unfair. They should sing their song.

“I saw that at the semifinals (Arima Velodrome). Some voices were coming through a laptop. There should be no laptop assistance.” While he was still appreciative of the emphasis on an elaborate retinue of performers, nubile dancers and costuming, he denounced the gravitation toward technology like laptops to complement an artiste’s singing. “An artiste should be able to sing their song. Just get up on stage and sing. “I am looking on with excitement to see how it unfolds. Let’s hope it turns out to be fantastic.” Quizzed on his advice for potential artistes, McIntosh said: “Just put on a good show for the paying patrons.” McIntosh got the judges’ nod of approval for the Soca Monarch title with On De Road in 1995, and Ent in 1997.

Mentors Jahmoun, Patch, KMC, Bunji

McIntosh mentored Guardian Media Ltd artiste Jahmoun Mendoza and Roger Joseph, popularly known as Patch, and is proud of how the careers of Bunji and KMC, whom he had also influenced, have turned out. “I will be looking on to see how these guys perform. “Patch’s approach is song and humour. Before he couldn’t keep his key. Patch has grown tremendously. Jahmoun got hyped up about the whole competition thing when we went to Uganda. His Flashing Lights...Bumpers was born. “But Jahmoun and I had a great time with the mas at Kampala Karnaval. We will be returning at the end of July.” On the flip side, he remembered polite women sweeping miles of Kampala road with cocoyea brooms, and collecting the debris with their bare hands. It evoked images of Haiti where people were removing debris with their bare hands, in the aftermath of the January 12 earthquake which killed about 300,000 people.

Keen interest in Soca Monarch
Now that the countdown is on to Fantastic Friday, he said “new interest” has been generated in the calendar event. “I have seen a revival of interest with the return of Machel and Destra. That has brought new interest not seen since the days of Ronnie and Superblue.” He also feels the $2 million bonanza would definitely have been an incentive. But he frowned upon the behaviour of Ravi B describing him as “spoilt.”