Roland Yearwood

RemBunction (Roland Yearwood)

You can always count on RemBunction (Roland Yearwood) for a laugh.

The talented multimedia entertainer has tickled audiences the region over with his hilarious animation, music videos, parodies and short films.

Remy, as he fondly called, is turning heads this month for an altogether different reason. His latest offering, the laid-back jazzy “Sugar Fudge” has his growing army of social media followers asking if the real life protagonist behind the affable caracticature has found love.

“RemBunction is always in love,” a coy Remy told the Kitcharee over WhatsApp chat on Friday.

Remy danced around the question like a bélé dancer preparing a death defying limbo before adding: “That’s a love song, to love and my loved ones. So no beans to spill, just sugar fudge.”

A master of distraction

Remy has always been a master of distraction. Who can forget his laugh-out-loud animation parody of soca acts Fay-Ann Lyons-Alvarez, Nailah Blackman and Nessa Preppy (Vanessa John) ogling a fit “young boy”, only to see him being whisked away by calypso veteran Calypso Rose (Linda McArtha Sandy-Lewis).

Earlier this year his imaginative portrayal of Machel Montano and Iwer George propositioning the Shell oil company for an endorsement deal was shared thousands of times.

Remy was back to his old tricks last week with a parody of JW (Jason Williams) and Blaze (Ancil Isaac) 2010 Road March and International Soca Monarch (ISM) winner “Palance” called Palaament detailing JW’s senatorial appointment. The one-minute animation video is being shared repeatedly across all social media platforms.

Unsurprisingly, Remy says his animation videos can require a lot of work. He added that they actively reflect decades of work amassing an extensive animation library.

“If I have to design and build an animated project from scratch it can be very time intensive, but I have drawn many cartoons and illustrations over the years so I have amassed a decent library of caricatures of known personalities and now I store and save my animation templates for easy retrieval.

He said the JW bit was so incredulous it more or less wrote itself.

“I was able to create the JW parody in a few hours since I already had him on file from some of my other animated work. I usually wait for inspiration, but in T&T, comedy writes itself.

“These are fun projects that give me an outlet to express some of the stuff that dances around in my head and I muse about. Plus piccong is part ah we,” he added with a laugh.

A vintage soul

Outside of the editing booth Remy is very much a vintage act. His musical works are a throwback to calypso music heyday. Yet he manages to wrap it all into a contemporary packaging with slick camera work, creative animation and skilful editing.

It’s a combination that a number of young main­stream acts have employed with great success in recent years.

Soca songstress Nailah Blackman’s “Iron Love”, a remake of her grandfather’s–soca inventor Ras Shorty I (Garfield Blackman)–1976 calypso hit “Corey Iron” is one example. Swappi’s (Marvin Davis) Carnival 2020 hit remake of Baron’s (Timothy Watkins Jr) 1984 soca hit “Feeling It” is another. Both acts were able to successfully harness, repackage and deliver calypso history to young, willing audiences.

Remy credits his genuine love for the art form for his personal success. The talented multimedia entertainer says he is heartened to see that more and more young mainstream acts are willing to experiment with vintage sounds.

“I love calypso and it is reflected in my work so I think that’s why I am able to bridge the gap for the current generation. Quite a few younger artistes are now experimenting with the vintage calypso aesthetic and that excites me because it means that while it morphs and changes it will always be here,” he said.

Remy expressed great pleasure in being able to give Trinis a reason to smile through the difficult global Covid-19 pandemic. This, he says is the true role of the entertainer. And the positive energy goes both ways.

“These are tough times for most, but I have tried my best during this time to maintain a positive outlook by making sure to exercise, mediate and create.

“I will continue to contribute as a multimedia artist, I’ll share more songs when the spirit moves me, just as I share my other skills within the creative industries. So if someone reading this needs an animator, singer-songwriter, a video director, editor or even an actor ah dey! Call yuh boy,” he concluded.

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