Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafemuddy

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'

DigiTrad:
LINSTEAD MARKET


Related threads:
Merrick's Orchestra - Cipriani Calypso (5)
Lyr Req: Three Friends' Advice (Lord Executor) (21)
(origins) Origins: Small Island (60)
Lyr Req: Rum and Coca Cola (100)
What's the difference between calypso and reggae? (82)
Help: Title of song-Miss Daisy (Lord Invader) (6)
Lyr Req: Crisis In Arkansas (Lord Invader) (9)
Lyr Req: Anybody knows this calypso song? (6)
Lyr Add: Songs from Barbados (24)
Janie Mama calypso - translation?? (14)
Lyr Add: Murder in de Market (Caribbean) (23)
Linstead Market MIDI (18)
ADD: jamaican folk music (71)
Lyr Req: Big Bamboo (18)
Caribbean Calypso (16)
Lyr Req: Cudelia Brown / Cordelia Brown (74)
ADD: Songs from Trinidad (37)
Lyr/Chords Add: Linstead Market (trad Calypso) (19)
(origins) Origins: Sly Mongoose (43)
Lyr Add: Big Big Sambo Gyal (Jamaica) (32)
Lyr Add: Reincarnation (Calypso) (12)
Lyr Req: Old Time Cat o' Nine (Lord Invader) (158)
Lyr Add: Donkey City (Calypso) (3)
Lyr Add: Judy Drownded (6)
Lyr Add: Yankee Dollar (Lord Invader) (6)
Lyr Add: The Lajobless (Calypso) (1)
Lyr Req: Oh, Not A Cent (7)
Miss Dorothy, Dorothy (4)
(origins) Origins: 'Let me go, Melda Massi/Marcey' (Harry B (8)
Biography: Lord Invader- calypsonian- anyone knew? (26)
Lyr Add: Sing Sally Oh (Calypso) (1)
SOCA LYRICS (Trinidad, Caribbean) (5)
Calypso guitar (2)
Lyr Req: Trinidad Calypso - Rum and Coca Cola (8) (closed)


MorwenEdhelwen1 19 May 11 - 06:07 AM
MorwenEdhelwen1 19 May 11 - 04:23 PM
MorwenEdhelwen1 19 May 11 - 08:30 PM
MorwenEdhelwen1 20 May 11 - 01:35 AM
MorwenEdhelwen1 24 May 11 - 02:18 AM
GUEST,Kevin Burke 25 May 12 - 05:35 PM
MorwenEdhelwen1 25 May 12 - 09:06 PM
GUEST,leeneia 26 May 12 - 11:32 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 26 May 12 - 12:40 PM
MorwenEdhelwen1 26 May 12 - 11:16 PM
MorwenEdhelwen1 26 May 12 - 11:26 PM
MorwenEdhelwen1 26 May 12 - 11:57 PM
Big Al Whittle 27 May 12 - 06:32 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 27 May 12 - 02:18 PM
Azizi 27 May 12 - 03:20 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 27 May 12 - 03:52 PM
Kevin Burke 29 May 12 - 09:30 PM
James Fryer 31 May 12 - 04:13 AM
RyBurhans 24 Jun 14 - 09:21 PM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:





Subject: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 19 May 11 - 06:07 AM

This is a calypso war verse sung by Lord Invader inthis clip: in a live performance at the Calypso At Midnight concert hosted by Alan Lomax.
Here are the lyrics of the first verse he sings:
    "Yes, my mother dead and my father disown me,
    What am I to do?
    My mother dead and my father disown me,
    What am I to do?
    Now I'm livin' in this world and I've got nobody,
    No brother, no sister, no cousin family,
    But it's war and rebellion when I meet calypsonian,
    My intention is war."

Quite aside from the fact that Lord Invader is great at rhyming on the spot, does anyone know whether this verse may or may not be true? This could be combined with the "Lord Invader-calypsonian" thread, in fact I recently refreshed it (the older thread) in the hope of reopening discussion, but wondered whether or not this needs a separate thread which may lead to discussions of biographical information. However it may be combined with the older thread. I just don't want to have to keep on refreshing the older one.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 19 May 11 - 04:23 PM

Refresh.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 19 May 11 - 08:30 PM

Anyone else want to talk about this verse?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 20 May 11 - 01:35 AM

Refresh.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 24 May 11 - 02:18 AM

Should this thread be combined? Refresh.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: GUEST,Kevin Burke
Date: 25 May 12 - 05:35 PM

Hi, Morwen. It's a good question you ask. Why would Lord Invader make up something like that? On the other hand there was no emphasis on telling the truth in a calypso war. Exaggeration and bombast were the order of the day.

In 1947 Lord invader testified in court that he was born on September 13, 1914 and raised in San Fernando. He attended a "Roman Catholic" school. I have not seen anything else about his family life in Trinidad.

When Invader died, on October 15, 1961, in New York the obituaries mentioned that he left behind a wife, Elaine (Lewis), a stepson, Melvin Lewis and as stepdaughter, Dorothy Derbin. I have not been able to track any of them down. My guess is that his marriage was a common law marriage.

I am planning to visit his grave soon which is in Brooklyn.

Morwen - please contact me directly - kburke9@mac.com


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 25 May 12 - 09:06 PM

Yes, Kevin, technically I could make up a war verse that says "I'm the best singer ever" and it wouldn't have to be true. I'd just have to use words to demonstrate it. My opponent would also have to use words to demonstrate that they were better than me.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 26 May 12 - 11:32 AM

Guest Kevin Burke, if you want to communicate with Morwen, do it by signing up as a Mudcat member. Better yet, do it right here on the Forum.

Morwen, sweetie, please don't contact a stranger directly through e-mail. We don't know anything about "Kevin Burke" except that he happens to be using the name of a famous Irish musician.
========
Now about that verse - maybe the sad lines "My mother dead and my father disown me..' simply came from a song that had been around for a while. Lord Invader could have sung those lines very mournfully, then broken into a fast, funny pace for "But it's war and rebellion when I meet calypsonian, My intention is war." That would have got a big laugh.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 26 May 12 - 12:40 PM

The recording notes say nothing about his antecedents. I can find nothing that was said about his parents in records of the trial in which he received compensation for "Rum..."

My guess is that the lines were made up for the song and are not true.

Outside of the fact that he (Rupert Grant) came from a lower class family, I can find nothing about parents or siblings.

"My Intention is War" is on youtube. Also the video Calypso War, with Macbeth and Duke of Iron (clearly sung- worth saving).


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 26 May 12 - 11:16 PM

ETA: Some research I've done suggests that the lines follow a pattern from kalinda songs- (stick-fighting songs), which are usually the singer boasting "even though all this bad stuff happened to me, I'm still better than everyone else, especially at singing." It's basically about one-upping your rival. BTW, I've always thought that the life of Lord Invader, especially the case around R&CC, would make a great stage play(but you'd have to get actors who could sing well, and improvise their own verses.)
Q, is that information from the Nizer book about the trial?
ETA 2: Another thing; my brother recently asked me whether Macbeth and Duke of Iron were the same guy. They do sound similar IMO.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 26 May 12 - 11:26 PM

ETA: And both were great singers. I've read GUEST, Kevin Burke's site, and I'd like to ask him where on the web he got some of his information. I can only find that site when Googling for information on the R&CC case.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 26 May 12 - 11:57 PM

ETA: I can sound like Lord Invader on my low notes.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 27 May 12 - 06:32 AM

Hows the calypso business doing. I like people who dare to be different. You've been working away at this sometime - do you feel you're getting anywhere?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 27 May 12 - 02:18 PM

I have the book by Nizer, but his participation in the suits was not extended to the actual suit by Grant in which he gained the verdict. There is an article on that trial, but I have not seen court records of either action.

http://www.rumandcocacolareader.com/RumAndCocaCola/Calypso_Trial.com has some information on the trial, but nothing on Calypso War.

I agree that this type of song, used in the tent contests, may have had its basis in the boasting in the old kalinda songs.

There seem to have been a number of these challenge ("war") songs in which a singer would mock another singer. I have looked but so far haven't found any. If you have any of them, please post the lyrics.

One article says the recordings of calypso songs are unmatched except possibly by the Irish, but most lyrics of these 45 and 78 rpm records do not seem to have been published in material available to me on the internet.
http://www.allmusic.com/explore/essay/calypso-on-record-t626

Some samplers have been made available, but I only have a couple.-
http://www.coldbacon.com/music/calypso.html

ICE Records- The store website has some good stuff I wish I could afford.
http://www.icerecords.com/store.html


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: Azizi
Date: 27 May 12 - 03:20 PM

Here's a transcription of "CALYPSO WAR" [Also known as "My Intention Is War" by Lord Invader, Macbeth, and Duke of Iron, 1946)

Note: Words that I'm unsure of are placed in brackets along with a question mark.

This is an initial attempt. Corrections are welcome.

CALYPSO WAR
Lord Invader
Yes, my mother dead and my father disown me,
What am I to do?
My mother dead and my father disown me,
What am I to do?
Now I'm livin' in this world and I've got nobody,
No brother, no sister, no cousin family,
But it's war and rebellion when I meet calypsonian,
My intention is war.

Calypso singing is such a technical thing
It was not made for one and every to sing.
How by the heavens can these songsters win
Except by me comin back and seein it's a sin
My head is like a book that is welcome fat
My tongue like a gun that never is snapped
And I'm sorry for the molester who molest Lord Invader*
My intention is war.

[Audience member? -"Sing it!"]

Macbeth the Great:
Ladies and gents most respectfully,
Please accept my compliments most gorgeously
I most appreciate your loyalty
A patronage that been given to me
I start to sing 1928
Today I'm known as Macbeth the Great
And I want you to know, my friends,
That I master Calypso wherever I go.

Duke of Iron:
Now I believe their condition
They have no ammunition
To fight in this sudden competition.
When it comes to Calypso singing
Both of them, they appear as weaklings.
Don't they know I'm the Duke of Iron
And I command Calypsonians
wherever I go.

Lord Invader:
This insolent would be
Delirious mule
Audacious lamonger you're out of rule
You're abnormal expression
Would no more hearing in this tent at once
Pretender, and stop your sneerin
You gabaless swabbler
Illiterate ape
Now you are in a terrible scrap
And you resemble a man a go go a forty from Tobago***

[audience laughs]

Macbeth the Great
Men like you who are corrupted and defiled
With such dangerous disease you should be exiled
You see the council should have you fumigated
From the company of man you should be isolated.
Ladies and gents, please look at this face
And tell me does that belong to the human race?
[audience laughs]
Those poor fools [foundations?] can't fool the population.
Tell them roll away.

[audience laughs and claps]

Duke of Iron
Now Lord Invader now listen to me
While I am shaping up your destiny.
How dare you to approach your superior
With your rotten composition that is inferior.
Don't you know that I am a warrior of royal birth
And I will put you six under the earth.
Don't you see that I am the Duke of Iron
And I destroy Calypsonians
Everywhere I go.

Lord Invader:
Once my enemies found me in attack
I fought them bravely, I fought them back.
Some people call me the great Julius Caesar
While others call me William The Conqueror.
It is not for me they have got to fear
It's long simple why I got them there.
I'm just like a mystic when I should face these lunatics.
My intention is war.

[Audience laugh or uploader laugh]

Macbeth the Great
When on the battle field I begin to crawl
Calypsonians become excited get up and bawl.
Ferocious beast before my bravery
[nay that me mostly?] to be killed and slain.
Listen to me, they are just like a lamb
For the worse ammunition can't do me no harm.
For my [beckoning?] is as strong as the Rock of Gibraltar.
Tell them run away.

Duke of Iron
Invader, has not fall into submission.
But we goin do finish with this composition.
But I want you to know
That you cannot beat Trinidad for Calypso.
Now ladies and gents accept my compliments.
I know that you have accepted our implements.
So we going to end up with this little Calypso
Because its getting late.

Macbeth the Great [?] says "No, no not yet. Finish up now."

Lord Invader
Now I'm gonna rhyme most extemporaneously
And show you my singing ability.
I'm proud and delighted to have you here.
And to tell you without no care,
Ladies and gentlemen we welcome you whole heartedly
And to tell you plain and candidly
Lord Invader a massive Calypsonian
Has gained satisfaction
My intention is war.

-end of transcription (Azizi Powell, 5/27/2012)

Notes:
* if I enter the competition and see what they're doing is a sin [because it's so poorly composed]

**I'm sorry for the molester who [attempts to molest (mess with) Lord Invader [because when it comes to challenging me in a Calpyso competition they will be beaten]

***"a go go a forty" =(going on forty)

-snip-

I posted this transcription along with a sound file on this post of my blog: http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2012/05/calypso-war-lord-invader-macbeth-duke.html

- Azizi Powell


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 27 May 12 - 03:52 PM

Thanks for transcribing the lyrics. Discussion is barren without the object.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: Kevin Burke
Date: 29 May 12 - 09:30 PM

In answer to Morwen's question about where i got the information for my website (www.rumandcocacolareader.com) - I got it from original sources, mainly the trial transcript, all the depositions, interrogatories, and exhibits which are in the National Archives.

Also from contemporary newspaper accounts but you have to be careful there because there is a lot of misinformation in those accounts.

I also have end notes on parts of my site which should give specific citations. If there is something specific you would like to know about my sources, do not hesitate.

I would also like to point out that the lyrics of "Calypso War" have been transcribed and printed by Rounder Records in "Calypso After Midnight!" If you would like help with any of the lines, I have the printout which is very helpful.

Kevin Burke
Cambridge, Massachusetts


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: James Fryer
Date: 31 May 12 - 04:13 AM

I think it's rhetorical. Calypso war is about outdoing the opponent, truth is irrelevant. I'd love to know more about Invader's life.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Origins: Calypso War- 'Yes my mother dead'
From: RyBurhans
Date: 24 Jun 14 - 09:21 PM

I know this thread is old, but I want to talk about this!!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 16 August 11:04 AM EDT

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.