Brother Resistance

Brother Resistance (Lutalo Masimba).


“In the beginning was the word…”

I was about 16 years old when I first glimpsed the future.

I had gone to a show at City Hall, Port of Spain. These tall, dreadlocked (not a thing back then), militant-looking guys ran onstage, raised a Black Power fist in the air and commanded “Stand firm for your culture!”

They then launched into a hypnotic drum and bass groove, chastising those in the audience who chose to turn their backs on the struggle and the culture and instead preferred to “put on yuh dancing shoes...and gone to de disco”

They were called The Network Rapso Riddum Band. I had never heard or seen anything like it. But I knew this was the future sound of Trinidad & Tobago. And I knew I had to be part of it.

I got my chance a decade later, in London. There I was fortunate to be part of two seminal albums and countless tours.

I was able to see Brother Resistance and company Rock De Colonial Order and Ring De Bell for freedom from London to Berlin to Paris to Antwerp to Rotterdam and beyond. Ring it all over - yes, even inna Buckingham Palace.

You have to remember this was the 1980s - Nelson Mandela was still in solitary confinement in a South Africa riven by apartheid. In a continent where most countries were not even a quarter-century beyond colonial rule. So when he strode onstage like a colossus and ordered the people to assemble at the sound of the bell, this was a revolutionary act. When he stood in the middle of Rome and told a crowd of tens of thousands of Italians that their national icon Christopher Columbus had told a “Big Dutty Lie”, this was a real “unpopular opinion”.

Lutalo Masimba - thanks for allowing me to be part of your mission to “Touch de Earth With Rapso” - the “power of the word”. To raise environmental awareness with “Mother Earth”, many, many years before it became “fashionable”.

“All things come from her, and to her all things must return”.

Rest in Power as you walk in the Glory of Kings…


“If you go ah party and you eh hear ‘Meh Lover’ de DJ eh cool. If you doh hear ‘King Liar’ you eh laugh. And if you eh hear ‘We like it’ and ‘Disco Daddy’ you eh party yet!”

Deep, roaring, confident laughter followed that “boasty” declaration from calypso icon Lord Nelson (Robert Nelson) on Friday morning.

JUDGING from the kudos director and producer Willie Singh has received from international film festivals for his short film Temptation, he is well on his way to making a name for himself in the local film industry. Singh was the only Trinidadian filmmaker honoured at last year’s Engage Art Contest where his film won honourable mention. Temptation also made the rounds at 13 international film festivals where it won Most Powerful Film, Best Cinematographer, Best Covid-19 Lockdown Film, Best Visual Effects and Best Religious Short Film.

More than painting pretty colours or placing a random design on canvas, international artist Wilcox Morris intended to make a statement, to express his philosophy, and to “provoke some thought that one should not be complacent at any point in life you may be,” he once said.

IN the 1970s Rupert and Jeanette Cox left Morvant and went to live in the forests between Matelot and Blanchisseuse where they began a social and spiritual revolution. They came to be known as the Earth People. Jeanette became “Mother Earth” and her husband took on the name “Good Shepherd”; they renounced clothing, burnt all their material possessions and roamed the forests naked. They were the subjects of the book Pathology and Identity: The Work of Mother Earth in Trinidad by Roland Littlewood.

Good Lord, I have been through so many troubles, fought so many battles, wondering how I was going to overcome my tragedies... But I learned how to go down on my knees.. And pray... So not I am here today... no longer in misery but on my way to victory...