Saturday, August 30, 2008

Ronnie and Caro Band Launch Bakkanal - The Aftermath

Date: Friday 29th August 2008
Place: Club Ambassador
Cost: $50 past masqueraders, $100 non masqueraders

Thanks to Saucy, I had collected a pass for myself and a guest to attend the media launch which was scheduled from 8:00pm-100:00pm.

For reasons yet to be explained, there was no media launch. We waited and waited and nothing, except some not so warm hors 'douvres and an open bar. No announcement was made or anything. Quite a few of the media personnel present left before the presentation began.

This is after I was hustling home, missing my getting my hair braided, and hustling back into town to get to Ambassador.
Anyhoo, Saucy left and I stayed to see my band's launch.
Even though I love at least one section in every band launched so far, I was waiting until Ronnie & Caro launched to decide where I would be registering this year.

The launch eventually got started around 11:30pm which was soon after the MC, Allison Hennessy arrived. Caro opened the presentation listing the band's achievements of this year including First Place in Medium Band of the Year and Most Colourful Band.

Allison came on next to introduce the costumes.
The band's theme for this year is Bakkanal and focuses on the bacchanal of Carnival.

The first section up was Panorama

There are three female version of this costume, a backline, a frontline and an uber(?) frontline. I'm not sure what they're calling the different versions of the costumes.
THis costume is okay, but no WOW factor.

Chutney Soca Monarch

Another section with three female versions of this costume. I liked the more traditional interpretation of this costume.

WASA fete
I thought that this reminded me very much of Down the Islands form last year's presentation as it is the same shade of blue although a variance in the execution. As a blue costume it is just pretty. I thought that the name for this section could have been different though.

Soca MonarchThis was the first section of the night to make me go "Ohhhh". It's a very vibrant shade of orange, but I think that it needs a little more contrast.

Green with Envy

The frontline for this costume had an interesting detail where the fan could be attached to the back of the belt and made into a bumsee bustle.
I don't understand how the section Green with Envy falls into the whole Carnival is Bacchanal
The chick who modelled the frontline costume real throw me for six with the off colour shoes though.

Dimanche Gras

I love the detail of the bra and belt in this section.
The frontline was another that has a convertible fan/bustle piece.

Calypso Fiesta

I like the bra and belt desing of this costume, but not neccessarily the headpiece and backpack which reminds me of the design for Angel Fish of last year.

The backline headpiece of this costume consists of a mask, nd I do not like masks for Carnival as they block my FAB! makeup.

Another section with three versions of the female costume.

The backline has fallen victim to the feathery crotch and nipples, the frontline is okay, bu tagain with the featery nipples and a mask as well. I did find the uber frontline costume was portrayed very well by Miss Soowan Bramble. She really got into it, and with a bit of tweaking (and clipping of boas) this costume could be one of my favorites.
This section's male costume is the worst by far.

Blue Devils

The models for this section REALLY got int the whole vibe of what they were portraying.
I like the idea but I do not think it was well executed. I say more horns and less feathers. And fix that sad looking backline tail. I also thought the wings on the frontline looked a bit flimsy.

Overall I felt very underwhelmed by the presentation as I was expecting that much more from Ronnie & Caro this year. WHile the costumes are not ugly, I think some of them fall short of being fantastic.

The men's costumes are all very standard and consists of a fedora with four feathers, a neck piece and arm piece. Very generic.

Shortly after the presentation I left Club Ambassador and made my way home.

I give Ronnie & Caro's 2009 band launch 6 boas out of 10.

Ronnie and Caro - The Aftermath in pics

Review to come later.
Dimanche Gras

Carnival Fiesta


Blue Devils

Chutney Monarch

WASA fete

Soca Monarch


Friday, August 29, 2008

Ronnie & Caro 2009 - Sneak Peek

From Today's Guardian Section C1

I'm definitely looking forward to the launch, which takes place tonight at The Ambassador Hotel.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Poll Results are In!

Poll: Pick a section for Afro Chic

And with the majority of you (30 votes) picked *drumroll* Island People's Afroooooo Diiiissssiiiiaaaacccccc!

Coming second was TRIBE's Kiskadee with 11 votes.

Their was a tie for third place with Kaotic's Beau Jolais and Spice's Peppercorns each getting 9 votes.

Thanks for voting!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Battle of the Monokins...

Well to say that this year is the year of the monokinis is an understatement!

It all started with the fabulousness of Spice's Melilot Blue and the latest addition being Island People - Heavenly Skies.

With Ronnie & Caro, Pulse 8, Legacy and others still to launch can we expect to see more of the monokini? It seems the monokini is the new bikini!

To be honest I didn't even know what a monokini was until after Spice's launch!

I'm not complaining though, I find the monokini is absolutely gorgeous, when executed correctly that is!

So with all the monokinis out there to date which is your favorite?

Spice - Melilot Blue

Island People - Heavenly Sky

D' Krewe - Fish

TRIBE - Spangled Cotinga

Harts - Persis

Elements - Queen of Harts

All pics taken from the respective band's website with the exception of Harts which was taken from and Fish and Heavenly Skies which were taken by me at the respective band launches.

Friday, August 22, 2008


Well we eh win, but it feel like we win!!!

Yes ah talking Olympics...the 4x100m relay to be exact!
Jamaica won gold and Trinidad won the silver medal!

The bar I was in to watch the match was packed to capacity and everybody was jumping up and hugging up and screaming their support.

Way to go boys!


Check out Wuzdescene's post here...ah love it!!
Photo taken from Breaking News

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Island People Band Launch 2009 - The Aftermath

Date: Sunday 17th August 2008
Place: Queen's Park Oval

Price: $150 and $200 Two for one drinks

What a Trini like MORE than freeness? Freeness and VIP treatment of course!

I had gone ahead to secure my tickets for IP's launch earlier in the week, only to be told on Sunday afternoon that there was a complimentary (WHO SAY COMPS?!) waiting for me to pick up. So on my way down to IP's launch just after 7:00pm I stopped to pick up my comp, which wasn't a comp at all, but an invite for Mr.& Guest with a private viewing of the costumes between 6 and 7.

Well I was happy and vex at the same time. Happy that I was getting in free but vex I had missed that private viewing. Anyhoo...

So the hubby and I got there, our two tickets and proceed to the Heavenly entrance. I was excited to see the decor having passed by earlier in the day cause hello!, we know IP does bring it!

We walked up the stairs into "Heaven" after getting our VIP bands, and descended into "Cotton Hell?" I guess the angels in heaven have dirty ears or something.

After settling in (having my first drink of Coke on the rocks) I walked around looking for my peeps who were supposed to be there and to start scoping out the best spot to take my pics.

Is now self I got confused. There was the bed of a trailer on wheels (herein after called the T.O.W) outfitted in cotton (and plywood covered with a red carpet) set up kinda in the middle of the venue, but then there was also another stage set against the IP Heaven on Earth backdrop. I decided to wait until all was revealed and then take up a position.

The T.O.W.

Found my peeps, sneaked some drinks back and forth a couple of times for them from VIP and then went backstage to explore. Got a good couple of shots backstage while waiting on the presentation to start.

Bounced up Saucy a little while later who was looking a bit rushed and carried her backstage to a spot where she could set up and I took a few more pics as the models were getting into full costume.
Saucy blogging "live"

Costume presentation was carded for half 9, so closer to that time I made my way to the front. An announcement was made over the PA system that we were to keep a 5 foot (eh?!) distance from the trailer in the middle of the venue.

Just after half 9 the presentation began.

The crowd turned their eyes toward heaven (the night sky) and we were greeted by costumed models in white boxes (some say white coffins) attached to a crane gently coming down to "earth".

The models landed safely and we saw the first section Heavenly Skies.

Now in case you were under a rock the past week, the costumes were "leaked" (WINK! WINK!) and mass emailed to every Tom, Dick and Chin Lee, and everybody liked what they saw. It was just to see the fabulousness up close and personal now.

The models came on to a soundtrack that was out of this world!
As it had to be THE MOST ANNOYING soundtrack ever, with the person singing "Heaven on Earth" and then injecting the names of the different sections as they came on like "HEEEAAAVVEEENNLLLYYY SKKIIIEEESSSS"
This gave me a headache that I still had when I woke up the next day I swear! As a matter of fact just thinking about it now giving me a headache!

I think it was some new ground breaking brainwashing technique they was trying out. Appealing to your subconscious to visit their mas camp and register.

The models came out of their coffins..oops..heavenly boxes and descended onto the first stationary part of the stage then made their way to the T.O.W which then moved them from the front of the stage towards the middle of the venue in the SLOWEST manner possible. And then brought them all the way back to the front where they made their way off the stage.

This was done 13 times for the 13 sections (not sure if it's chapters this year) and stretched a presentation that could have been half hour into over an hour. It was absolutely mind numbing.

Now the costumes.
*click to make pics larger*

My absolute favorite costume is Aaaaafffroooooo Diiiiiissssiiiiaacccck!!!!!

Not because IP dedicated the section after me, but because it is simply gorgeous. I dunno how people could find this costume wasn't nice when they saw the sneak peek.
I love love love, LOVE the headpiece and the detail on the bra is fantastic and the accessories to die for.
Do not like the frontline at all though.
And let us not even talk about the male model *dribble*...ah mean..male costume that had the audience oohing and gaping.

First runner up is Raaaayyysss offf Liiiigghhttttt!!!

Gorgeous with a capital G.
The detail is amazing. The frontline is a fully beaded panty and the bra and accessories FAB!

Second runner up is Paaaarrraaaadddiiisssuuussss!!!

The backline is nice, I am loving the frontline, even with the bustle on the bumsee. The colours looked good and blended well together.
BUT (and this is a big BUT eh)
How in Heaven's name IP could allow Sonia Mack to produce a costume which is a shamelss remake/remix/rewind of a National Costume that Danielle Jones went to Miss Universe with? I hope is only one of that costume going to be "made".
Shame on Island People and shame on Sonia Mack. I expected better from both of you!

So that's my top three.

As for the other costumes (I eh singing again, meh throat hoarse and rain falling)

Carnival - I like but not in love with it. I like the colours in the costume and the pan detail in the frontline backpack.

Ocean Whispers - SKIMPAYY with a captial S.

Angel Falls - Is it just me or does that frontline look like Rain? (IP circa their first year) And the men look like Egret rejects from this year.

Heavenly Sky - I like the frontline option with the big wings and feather skirt. Not feeling the backline at all. I like the Individual monokini and feathered skirt, I'm not feeling the wings though.

Natural Mystic - Island People needs to retire this colour.
We've seen it in Sicorro Winds, Sacred Sand etc etc. That notwithstanding, I am liking the fabric headpiece on the backline. Can anyone tell me why the frontline bikini bottom for this was black?

Chocolate & Caramel - I still don't see why people were loving this costume. It's neither here nor there with me.

Touch - Love the colour of it for the ladies, but it takes a brave man to rock pink, wuss yet that particular shade of pink. Go brave fellas.

Midnight Bloom - Not as awful as it looked in the calendar, but I can't see that tutu waistband working on the bigger ladies. Very "teenybopper" to me. This is probably the 'nicest' male costume which ain't saying much.

Dream - This shade of purple is nice. A pretty costume but no WOW factor here.

I think that's al lthe costumes. No could I forget?


What could be cornier than a section named "Love" where the entire costume if made up of hearts shaped gems? I dunno. Talk about taking it literally!
At least they got rid of the Jordi la Forge Star Trek shades that we saw in the calendar.

And that's all the costumes.

After the costumes I was expecting of course to see Machel (a standard in IP launches) coming down from the cranes swinging and singing YAYY!!HAA!!! and putting the crowd in a frenzy. Alas, there was no Machel to even salvage this launch.
Instead we were treated to the latest reggae and dnacehall sprinkled with a dash of soca.

Close to midnight the hubby and I left the launch and headed to the exit. I bounced up one of my peeps who was looking to get a calendar only to be told that there were no more calendars. HUH? I guess they figure we done have it on we email, why bother to give us one when we leaving? I ended up with none cause out of the goodness of my heart, I gave my two to my peeps.

I don't know if it was the calendar "leak", the long drawn out presentation, the boxes in the air or the exhaust from the T.O.W, but I just found IP to be lacking overall.
The "leaked" calendar had me looking forward to the seeing the costumes live but I left feeling disappointed. I expected big things from IP and they simply did not deliver for me.
IP is known for handling their men but this year is more like the men get man handled!

Island People had sent out an email promising a " launch like no other in Trinidad & Tobago. " And that it was. I will not forget this launch for a long time.

Overall I give Island People's 2009 Band Launch 5 wings out of 10.