Rihanna receiving her AMA Icon Award from her mother.
We have had a couple of interesting news items in recent days which served to piqued the curiosity of members of the BU household. Sir Hilary Beckles is of the view Barbados must capitalize on the success of Rihanna and her one billion dollar enterprise. To support his view he referred to Jamaica having built an industry around Bob Marley and reggae. BU is unsure how Beckles is able to make the comparison to Marley riding the crest of an indigenous genre of music anchored in the DNA of a nation. Rihanna maybe Barbadian – with Guyanese lineage -but her success has been manufactured on the back of a US-international genre of music. How Barbados can bottle and leverage for success the way Jamaica did for Marley remains highly sceptical but BU is optimistic.
Then we heard from Canon Frank Marshall on the need for Barbadians to embrace values which represented the core of what drove our success of yesteryear. Many will query though whether these values have to be embodied in a religious dogma to qualify. There is a strong view held by some Barbadians that when the Church played a leading role in our society the nation appeared to be in a better place morally, socially and economically.
Think it was Ian Webster the calypsonian who first penned that Barbados is quickly becoming a nation of shows. Why almost every fortnight now, one could hear of regional artists especially from the Land of many rivers and the Land of Iwor who seems to love a regular weekend trek to this Land of austerities and quick money to be made, bungie-ing. Somehow, not many of our troubadours repatriate with equal fervor.
Bajans as always, are only too willing to accommodate and pay dearly to hear “put your rag in the air and jump and wave.” So why should we be complaining, after all Bajans’ new money is being circulated (passing from land to land), Vat is being collected, at 17.5% and most of all much needed spin off employment is being generated from these flings. What about the more farinaceous, the forex? It is a well know fact that these entertainers often ask that they be paid in US currency for ease of transport and whatever else. More so, how about this new silage mentality now well entrenched in the party hearty of spend, spend, spend, even borrow if must?
Senator Santia Bradshaw and CEO of Pyramid, Barbados Labour Party candidate for St. Michael South East
It has been drawn to BU’s attention that several companies which Senator Santia Bradshaw has significant interest have benefited in the hundreds of thousands from the Enterprise Growth Fund (EGFL). EGFL is a government agency which manages several funds to ‘assist with financing through tooling and retooling and expansion of businesses in the productive sectors’.
Based on the documents attached Pyramid Entertainment Management Inc received what is described as a cumulative grant in 2011 of $450,000.00, Got Rythmn Inc received $146,000 in 2010 and Entertainment Network $51, 857.00.
In summary three Santia Bradshaw companies received $647,857 from the EGFL over a relatively short time period.
This is a government agency which is funded by the taxpayers of Barbados therefore BU deems our forage into the financial transactions mentioned as a matter of public interest. We want to know the basis for advancing greater than six hundred thousand dollars to the goodly Senator. The taxpayers want to know!
The sights and sound…yes the pic is meant to arouse sensibilities on a Sunday morning
There is a lot one could blog about this image. In this case the less said the better (check those grinning in the picture). All who witnessed this and similar incidences on the road, what was your thinking? Have we become numb to the point it makes no difference?
Recently Minister Stephen Lashley commented on the slack dress sightings at the popular Wadadah’s Back 2 School Party. What does he and others in authority plan to do about it if anything? Yes individuals are responsible for their actions but some times one has to save jackasses from themselves.
The closure of the Globe Cinema has brought to an end a period which will always be fresh in my mind. As a young boy, a group of fellows would have a cinema day, we started by attending the Globe at 12.30 PM, Olympic at 4.30 PM, Empire at 8.30 PM and the Plaza at midnight. From there it was Baxter’s Road for fried fish and we took the 6.00 AM bus for home.
The Globe Cinema was not only famous for good movies. I recall the night Jackie Opel out performed Percy Sledge and the Opels doing the same to the Drifters. Additionally there were many morning matinee shows with the Fantastics and other bands of the day. Nowadays because of technology and progress many prefer to watch movies from wide screen TV’s in their living room or even on their lawns. Maybe the Globe can still be used for shows and concerts, we have the Frank Collymore Hall but that is limited in capacity. The Globe can accommodate a larger audience. Personally I wouldn’t want to see the Globe go in the same direction the Empire has gone. Both of these cinemas were blessed with very good stages suited for shows, we’ve allowed the Empire to run to ruin. Please do something to keep our heritage alive, going to the cinema was a true Bajan culture. Many relationships were made from cinema going. The Globe is the last of these cinemas.
Maybe government and private sector can assist with keeping it alive by using it as the concert hall for the National Youth Orchestra and Steel Band or any such functions. This is part of our past that should not be allowed to descend into a state of disrepair.
The most effective way of using the Empire as an arts venue is to have it run under the auspices of the Central Bank management who currently administer the Frank Collymore Hall (FCH). In this way, the administration is minimized with both operating under the same management team. We have to approach the task at hand in a holistic way, it is the only way, it is the only way.
While the Empire would run as a performing arts venue solely, the FCH ought to be marketed for business meetings, equipped with the latest in teleconferencing services, presentations, recordings, other ancillary services and of course serve as a performing arts venue. The FCH has limited wing space, no fly space, a shallow stage and no orchestra pit and its seating is small. To put in an orchestra pit would mean sacrificing about 100 to 150 seats and the expense of excavation to access the pit by underground would take it out of use for a long period of time.
The work begins with the need to build competitive packages to attract record companies that meet or undercut other international studios. This would include a cooperative effort by local stakeholders; the waiving of taxes on equipment brought in by recording companies by government and the like.
Then, there needs to be a major marketing push, Barbados, because of Rihanna has become a top of the mind name across the globe, we are ideally placed to be able to approach prominent names in the business. People like Simon Cowell, Mick Jagger and L.A. Read to name three. If we build it, they will come because Barbados is not unfamiliar, these people have become known faces on the West Coast of Barbados over the years.
Rihanna was plucked from the Combermere Secondary School in 2004 by international recording producer Evan Rogers. Her first release pon de replay was a mega-hit and since then it has been one hit after the next. The one disappointment for most Barbadians is the fact Rihanna has not been able to perform for her fans living in Barbados and in the region.
Based on our usual unimpeachable sources plans are afoot for Rihanna to perform in Barbados at a date(s) between August and October 2011. The location of the concert is likely to be at the Kensington Oval. It is early days yet in the planning of the Rihanna Barbados Tour but indications point to the fact she plans to dazzle Barbadians by laying on a world class produced event. Our sources say the Rihanna Barbados Tour has the full backing of the Barbados government.
Last month Barbados launched the Diaspora Conference geared at enticing Barbadians living abroad to invest in Barbados. The initiative, the brainchild of Prime Minister David Thompson has come at a time when the Barbados economy is being severely affected by the current global economic conditions. To have Rihanna perform in Barbados – who can easily claim to be the most recognizable Bajan on the planet – provides a fillip to the government’s Diaspora initiative.
I’ve read the article in Barbados Today regarding Rihanna’s image. Sad to say, she’s not that interested in how anyone really feels. She’s in the business to make it by any means necessary. Sex always was a big seller even if one has to use his or her imagination. Rihanna is selling what the public wants. See Rihanna’s latest video which is creating the buzz.
I can understand your feelings regarding her holding a diplomatic passport and expecting her to be different in her business approach. However you should never loose focus, she is in business not for herself but under contract to do what the company wants i.e. to recoup the money they expensed towards promoting her.
I saw the video and it is what it is to who want to take it where their imagination wants to go. She is in the business to make money for the company so she too can get paid. Rihanna came on the scene like little Miss Innocent, but as time passed, she had to do what was expected of her if she wanted to be make it big. Many of us do worse things than what she’s doing in her videos or her songs; She is on her **JOB** doing what she has to do to stay on top of the industry. We might not like what she is doing but remember she is now a woman who can make her own choices;
I remember Grace Jones from Jamaica who was off the hook how she dressed and acted. This doesn’t make the person less than who they are at the end of the day. Just hope and pray that during her run that she will continue to be successful, and be a **LADY** in public. To be quite honest with you what she is doing isn’t nothing new or any different than many others who are in the business. Rihanna never started out to be another Queen of Soul.
CEO Senator Santia Bradshaw of Pyramid and Barbados Labour Party candidate for St. Michael South East (santiabradshaw.com)
Sometimes the most optimistic person in this world is forced to hang their heads and cry shame. Listen to the audio of one of the most popular artists in Barbados. Although recently fired by Voice of Barbados (VOB) he had no difficulty getting back on the airwaves compliments of SLAM 101.1. He is everywhere, on the ZRs, in the dancehalls, the calypso tents, on facebook, dub fetes, he is ubiquitous. He has a loyal fan club mainly comprised of our young minds.
BU family you be the judge. Is he entitled to unbridled freedom of expression under the cloak of freedom of expression? How should we view the role of CEO Senator Santia Bradshaw of Pyramid and Barbados Labour Party candidate for St. Michael South East in this matter. Do we have a case of an artist corrupting public morals?
What can we say? What are we to do?
PLEASE NOTE THE AUDIO CONTAINS OFFENSIVE LANGUAGE AND SHOULD NOT BE LISTENED TO IN THE PRESENCE OF MINORS.
The video like many is being circulated on Facebook and captures some of our young children dancing to the popular Lil Rick song Guh Down. BU notes that there are adults in the thick of things. In the words given currency by Fred R. Barnard, a picture is worth a thousand words.
When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things – King James Bible
Another Crop Over Festival in Barbados has ended, with entertainer Blood capturing the Road March title from other contenders with the song “Foot on Fire”. And truth be told, had NOT for its own capacity to be made so intensely commercially viable but so wretchedly politically exploitable by a few power-hungry money-grubbing people, this Crop Over Festival would have long gone by the way side like it previously did.
But, like the wider society, polity, and so-called economy in Barbados, this really little, cultural extravaganza, a micro-cosm, is being used by many elites/government functionaries for the primary purposes of aiding in the elite/state political exploitation of the masses and middle classes by ideological financial cultural imperialist means.
So, while there is no longer – as it really was – during the old Barbadian plantation enslavement society – the burning of “Mr. Harding” to signal the ending of Crop Over festivities and the beginning of “hard times” in between the Crop Seasons then, and while there is no longer in today’s post-independence Barbadian society too – but quite regrettably however – the burning of Mr. Harding to signify the end of the modern day Crop Over Festival, it can be safely argued by the People’s Democratic Congress (PDC) that long since those days when the Crop Over Festival was revived by the Barbados Board of Tourism in 1974, to principally woo more tourists to the island during the so-called summer season in Barbados, following its demise in the 1940s owing to the continuing decline in the importance of the sugar industry to the Barbados economy, there would have been many fundamentally wrong and senseless decisions and policies linking the Crop Over Festival more and more to local Tourism,
a very fickle, culturally destructive industry, to increase its commercial income generating potential.
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