Today I join the nation in mourning the passing of a legendary son of the soil and a true Caribbean giant, Dr Leroy Calliste, better known as the ‘Black Stalin’.
The Black Stalin, a five-time Calypso Monarch, elevated the art form of Calypso and social commentary to new heights. He fearlessly confronted the important issues of the day and boldly spoke truth to power.
His repertoire of classic songs including ‘ Black man feeling to party’, ‘’Wait Dorothy Wait’, ‘Burn Dem’ and ‘Caribbean Man’ will all live on for generations to come.
On a personal note, my favourite ‘Stalin’ song is ‘ We can make it if we try’. This classic Calypso perfectly captures the spirit of what true patriotism is about; the value of hard work and self-sacrifice during tough times for the good of all of our people.
Today as our nation faces immense challenges such as high crime and unemployment let us take inspiration from the genius of the legendary Black Stalin:
For we country facing its darkest hour
So our people need us today more than ever
But in our fight to recover, if ever you feel to surrender
It have one little thing that I want you always remember…
We could make it if we try just a little harder
If we just give one more try, life will be much sweeter.
Rest in Peace Black Stalin