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Short Shirt Feted in Double Celebration

Short Shirt. photo- Joseph JonesAntigua St John's - Scores of people bridged the political divide on Tuesday night in a rare show of unity as the nation joined in a double celebration - the 70th birthday of the Antigua & Barbuda’s most revered exponent of the calypso art-form, Sir McClean "King Short Shirt" Emanuel, and the official launch of year-long celebrations to mark his 50th year in calypso.

The event took place on the grounds of the House of Culture on Parliament Drive, and brought together members of Parliament from both sides of the aisles, a number of dignitaries, as well as ordinary men and women who wanted to share this special moment with the man who crowed calypso monarch a record 15 times.

Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer noted that while a calypso monarch is crowned each year, whenever the term "The Monarch" is used, everyone automatically knows that King Short Shirt is being referred to.

“This is a reflection of Short Shirt’s unparalleled body of work, and his accomplishments over these many years,” Spencer told the gathering.

He added that Short Shirt’s accomplishments are, however, best reflected in the lyrics of his hundreds of songs that spoke to ordinary people in profound ways.


“His songs transcend time in that they are as relevant 20 years ago as much as they are relevant today," the PM said, "and I am of the view that they will remain relevant for years to come."

Spencer singled out the song Lamentation, from which he read a verse and noted that it spoke of issues that have relevance globally, regionally, and locally. He described the song as a classic that is "one of the greatest renditions in calypso".

Spencer, an ardent lover of calypso and steel band, noted that Short Shirt had created quite a stir when he travelled to Trinidad to perform songs like Tourist Leggo and Raycon.

He drew attention to the fact that the celebration is taking place as the nation begins planning in earnest for the 55th Carnival celebrations. He called on people to come together in a spirit of oneness to work in the interest of the artform and the festival.

Meanwhile, Treasurer of the Commemorative Committee Bernard Percival announced a series of activities to mark the 50th anniversary.


They begin on Sunday with a service at the Spring Gardens Moravian Church, and include two TV panel discussion programmes on March 5 and 12; a free concert at Dredge Bay on April 8; a second free concert in Barbuda on May 25 during Caribana; a black-tie roast at Sandals Resort on June 16; the launch of a publication on the life of Short Shirt by Dorbrene O’Mard; the premiere of a television documentary in July; and a concert during the Carnival celebrations with Short Shirt as the special artiste.

A number of calypsonians performed during Tuesday's launch, including several from neighbouring islands. But the person who stole the show was Short Shirt’s grandson, Prince Short Shirt, with his rendition of the national anthem.


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14 Comments In This Article   

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GHETTO VIBARTION

#14 STANMORE » 2012-06-18 00:22

THE MUSIC THE MADNESS THE RHYTHM THE RHYME ,PULSATING VIBRATING. HE ONCE AWAKE THE YOUTHS ,WHO ARE NOW THE SLEEPING ADULTS.AND ONCE AGAIN HIS CALL FOR VENGEANCE MUST COME INTO PLAY, SO RISE PEOPLE RISE.ITS UNEASY ALL WAYS TO THE HEAD THAT WEARS THE CROWN. & NOW IS THE TIME FOR LOVE AND UNDERSTANDING. BARMAN! ITS AFTER MIDNIGHT, SO GIVE ME A BEER.
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IN SPITE OF ALL. LIFE IS WHAT WHAT U MAKE IT

#13 STANMORE » 2012-06-17 23:54

THE SHOW IN NEW YORK AT THE GRAPEVINE WHICH I CALLED , NIGHT OF THE FABULOUS FOUR,LITERALLY HAD THE GREAT ONE SHAKING IN HIS BOOTS.NOT A JOKE GUYS,BIRDIE WAS CRYING FOUL.THE FAB >4< WAS THE SPARROW, SHORT SHIRT, SWALLOW AND OF COURSE KING OBSTINATE.AND THAT WAS A NIGHT TO DIE FOR.... KING SHORT SHIRT: THIS INDISPUTABLE MONARCH, WILL REIGN ALLWAYS IN THE HEARTS OF ANTIGUANS AND BARBUDANS LONG LIVE THE KING*****
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IN SPITE OF ALL. LIFE IS WHAT WHAT U MAKE IT

#12 STANMORE » 2012-06-17 23:39

SIR MCLEAN EMANUEL AKA THE MONARCH, THE GREAT KING SHORT SHIRT OF THE KINGDOM OF WADADLI MONARCH OF ALL HE SURVEYS, HIS RIGHT THERE'S NONE TO DISPUTE. FROM THE CENTER ALL AROUND THE CARIBBEAN SEA, HE IS LORD, TO EVEN THE DEFF AND THE MUTE. ONE WOULD ONLY HAVE TO LISTON (2 OR 3 )TIMES TO ANY OF HIS SONGS TO REALIZE THE GREATNESS OF THIS ARTIST.THE TEMPOS AND THE CRESCENDO'S STANDS ALONE. THE STILE IS TOPPED OFF WITH HIS MAGNIFICENT VOICE THAT VIBRATES THE ENTIRE CALYPSO WORLD. I COULD NAME HIS BEST 10 SONGS BUT TO OTHERS THEY MAY BE HIS WORST.I WAS WITH HIM A LITTLE BEFORE HIS FIRST MEETING (A GUEST APPEARANCE) WITH THE GREAT ONE,IN 1968,AND TO THE WHOLE COUNTRY'S SURPRISE HE SANG (WHEN TROUBLE --TROUBLE ++TROUBLE) ITS BOUND TO END UP IN FLAMES. AND HE ONLY HAD ONE SONG.AND I LIVE TO HEAR FROM THE GREAT ONE HIMSELF ,HE KNEW HE HAD COMPETITION. *****
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STANMORE

Congrats!!

#11 Junie Webson » 2012-03-07 23:56

Congratulations to one of the best in the genre of calypso, much respect to you. Your talent is unmeasurable, songs such as “When” asks pointed questions that will not be answered in my generation or the next.

You are a treasure that Antigua need not leave in the dust, hopefully your honors will go on after the carnival season. It is time for the government to bestow upon you one of those ambassadorships that they relinquish so easily.

As an ambassador of music, you would be the best Antigua has ever seen, your music is know all over the globe, producers from country’s such as Israel have used your music in their documentaries.

Time for Antigua to see the value in what they have. Good luck on your 50th anniversary celebration.
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Junie Webson

congrats!!

#10 natural mistic » 2012-03-05 10:04

At the age of 7 when I first heard your music...that voice and the lyrics.WOW!! Congratulations, and Happy Birthday!. All hail the KING of calypso.
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natural mistic

RE: Short Shirt Feted in Double Celebration

#9 buss » 2012-03-05 09:40

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE!!! someone release a GREATEST hits cd compilation of his hits for us the deejays to purchase and play....WE BEGGING!!
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buss

Short shirt music

#8 Rohan » 2012-03-01 02:14

I was so happy to see these tracks on iTunes I did not think twice I just buy and can't stop listening I urge all Antiguans to purchase that's what warm me up on a cold London day .
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Rohan

Monarch in deed

#7 nameless » 2012-03-01 00:23

Lament oh my soullllll, lament oh my soul oh lord a crying for this cruel world..........There can never be another King Short Shirt. An icon for us. So Sir Emanuel conrats on a job will done!
Now I would pay any amonunt of money to see Short Shirt and Sparrow on the same stage!
Any body can make it happen, please do!!!!
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nameless

RE: Short Shirt Feted in Double Celebration

#6 Morris » 2012-02-29 14:34

It is very fitting that this national treasure and trailblazer is honored in such a way. Congratulations on your illustruous career and Happy Birthday! My you live to enjoy many more. Bod bless!
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RE: Short Shirt Feted in Double Celebration

#5 my way of helping » 2012-02-29 13:36

congratulations and all the best
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my way of helping

Uncle Leroy

#4 skyewill » 2012-02-29 11:06

Power rules the world today, Power currupts they say and absolute powere currupts you absolutely. it can Change a man.....
Yep, Same words applied 20 years ago apply today, Yep!
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skyewill

Best wishes to an icon!

#3 Dig It » 2012-02-29 10:14

Happy Birthday and Anniversary to the Monarch King Short Shirt!!! Your amazing career and achievements will always be in the hearts and minds of all, especially, calypso lovers!!! You not only have an amazing voice but you know how to perform and give the fans they monies worth!!! I am glad and proud to have you as one of our "precious" treasure on this island!!!
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Dig It

HAPPY BIRTHDAY !!!

#2 Cherilyn Adolphine » 2012-02-29 10:05

Happy Birthday Maestro!!! Happy Birthday Short Shirt!!! CONGRATULATIONS Antigua Barbuda for Honoring this justly and deserving MAN!!! An entire year!! OOh My Goodness my KING is getting his due..his FLOWERS!!! Antigua Barbuda ..THANK YOU THANK You !!! Short Shirt I LOVE YOUUUU!! I wish you many more years to come and enjoy your celebratory year.. I hope i get to hug u before the year is over.
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Cherilyn Adolphine

RE: Short Shirt Feted in Double Celebration

#1 Paget Edwards » 2012-02-29 08:04

Congratulations to The Monarch on a well deserved tribute.
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Paget Edwards

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