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King Spade Retains His Crown

April 28, 2006 – Crisp, clear lyrics, delivered decisively won the judges' decision as Cedric Brookes took the title of V.I. Calypso Monarch for the second year in a row.
Brookes sings under the moniker, King Spade. The Thursday night win onstage at Lionel Roberts Stadium was his eighth title as best calypso singer in a local competition. He won six titles at home on St. Croix. He captured the 2006 title with a song called, "Please, Mr Ottley."
"I wanted to think it was the Nick Friday song, but I think the stronger one was "Please, Mr. Ottley," he said at the end of the night, surrounded by friends and well-wishers.
The presentation by King Spade and the 10 contenders for his crown was the last of the stadium shows for Carnival 2006. Several singers used one of their two rounds of competition to pay tribute to the late soca road march king, Nick Friday, who died last year.
Former St. Croix calypso king, The Mighty Pat, aka Samuel Ferdinand, was named first runner-up. St. John's Myrel Tonge, performing as Super T, won second runner-up. Super T also won for Best Social Commentary. The judges chose Curtis Brathwaite, singing "35 Coach, 35" as most improved.
And although it is not an official judging category Morris Benjamin, "King Generic," was honored for Best Political Commentary for a song called "State of the Territory."
Carnival Committee Chairman Kenneth Blake, himself a veteran of the calypso stage, was on hand to congratulate the winner. "I think it went well," he said. "It was a very good crowd. The judges made their decision based on what thy heard. The judges' decision is final."
There were roughly 1,500 people making up the crowd at the stadium, far less than in some years. Many spectators said they were satisfied by the show, although some said this year's set of performers were not at the top of their game.
"I like the performers and they way they presented themselves. There are some that are not really up to par but you've got to give them a chance. They were the ones the judges chose to appear before us," said Alphonse Stalliard.
Musician Robert Leonard also said he was looking for more. "The calypsonians that competed tonight are extraordinarily talented. They are, however, not the best entertainers," he said.
This year's V.I. Calypso Competition was dedicated to the memory of Marvin Bonelli, known as Tight Shirt, who also died last year. Calypso Committee Chairman St. Clair DeSilva presented a plaque to Ashley George who accepted it on behalf of Bonelli's family, who live in Florida.

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