The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #138311   Message #3165560
Posted By: Q (Frank Staplin)
05-Jun-11 - 03:00 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Three Friends' Advice (Lord Executor)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Three Friends' Advice (Lord Executor)
"At the time that Dr. Merrick and [J. F.] Minerve were pinning down the date as 1906 [ composition of L'Année passée], we already knew that Leo Feist Inc. had obtained a deposition of an ancient calypso singer from Trinidad, Philip Garcia, known as Lord Executor, who swore that he heard the melody of L'Année passée in 1893, thirteen years before Belasco claimed to have written it."
[Soye indident determined as 1905]. ".........we were able to prove that Garcia was a derelict and his testimony was irresponsible and might have been bought for a dollar."
Gerald Clark [long-time calypsoan, who had played at Carnegie Hall, etc.] ...."testified that he had met Garcia, Lord Executor, whom he knew very well because he had once recorded with him." ".........If you will excuse the expression, Lord Executor, as I saw him, he is a bum, and he is incoherent- he is not consistent with a conversation...........he begs and I was glad to give him a dollar and get rid of him."
[Testimony in Court of Dr. Merrick, Gerald Clark and James Minerve exposed Garcia's testimony as] "fraudulent."

From Ch. 3, "The Case of the Plagiarized Song "Rum and Coca-Cola," p. 265-328, Louis Nizer, My Life in Court, 1961, Doubleday.

"Great names of Early Calypso," Don Hill, http;//
"Lord Executor (Philip Garcia) was one of a handful of calypso pioneers that was responsible for the spread of English language calypso in Trinidad in the early 1900s; it is lucky for us that he recorded for the Decca label in New York in the late '30s. He was a master of the longer calypso 'tent' forms and his recordings are an encyclopedia of social commentary and West Indian folklore."

It is unfortunate that he hit the gutter not long after this recording was made.