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Chats Around My Table
23 minutes | Sep 16, 2021
Chat with Chef Khalid Mohammed
Chef Khalid Mohammed is one of the Caribbean's leading chefs. In this chat with Franka, he reflects on how Covid has affected his restaurant business and reveals why he believes fine dining can't succeed for the foreseeable future in Trinidad and Tobago.
24 minutes | Jul 30, 2019
Frolic with Full Bloom
Full Bloom is the newest band to hit the streets of London for the annual Notting Hill Carnival. Featuring designs by two of Trinidad's leading designers - Sandra Hordatt and Shari Cumberbatch, along with London-based Michelle Lucas, bandleader Jean Pierre Poteon promises something for every kind of mas player. JP, as he's more commonly known, tells Franka how he came to the business of Carnival and explains his commitment to raising the standard of band management and customer service for the summer festival with his entertainment company Frolic Nation.
33 minutes | May 21, 2019
Prendergast, parang and pastelles
David Prendergast is a Jamaican who loves parang and pastelles. He developed a penchant for these uniquely Trinidadian things during his four-year tenure as High Commissioner to Trinidad & Tobago. This edition of Talk 'Bout Us features an interview he did with Franka just before he returned to Jamaica earlier this year. In this conversation, he speaks about the sometimes tricky relationship between T&T and Jamaica. The rivalry between the two countries usually manifests as light-hearted banter about football or food but in recent years, issues like immigration and trade have created some high tension. Prendergast also speaks about how culture has been a unifying force and the ways in which this country captured his heart.
32 minutes | Apr 25, 2019
Time to cut the fete red tape
Carnival fetes are driving the success of the season and promoters want the authorities to cut down the red tape involved in putting on major events. This was the view of three major players in the fete industry during a recent discussion that looked back on the Carnival 2019 season. The discussion is featured in this bonus episode of Talk Bout Us. Paige de Leon of the Fete Promoters Association; Jules Sobion, commander-in-chief of Caesar's Army and St Mary's College Past Student Union president Brevard Nelson cited inconsistencies in the process to obtain bar and dancehall licenses as one of the major challenges. The three joined Franka and LoopTT's Ricquolia Phillip for the chat at Uncorked Wines and Spirits in Port of Spain.
55 minutes | Mar 30, 2019
Is sport's future really female?
Four-time Olympian Cleopatra Borel is the star on this edition of Talk 'Bout Us. She joins Franka to speak about women in sport - the athletes and the journalists. "Cleo" speaks frankly about her challenges as she attempts to compete in her fifth Olympic Games in Japan in 2020, the shortcomings of athletics in Trinidad & Tobago and what she envisions as her future after she retires from competition. Also featuring in this podcast are Naasira Mohammed, the first woman to be appointed media and communications manager for the West Indies men and women's cricket teams; Rachael Thompson-King, senior sports journalist at the T&T Guardian Newspaper and Barbadian journalist Alex Jordan, formerly of Caribbean sport cable channel Sportsmax.
24 minutes | Mar 29, 2019
Sunset Jazz with Spyro Gyra
A visit by American jazz giants Spyro Grya kicks off what has now come to be known as "Jazz Season" in Trinidad and Tobago. In this bonus episode of Talk 'Bout Us, Franka speaks with Carl "Beaver" Henderson, promoter of the new concert, Sunset Jazz. Henderson also discusses why he brought promoters of other local jazz shows, along with officials of Trinidad Tourism Ltd and the Trinidad Hotel, Restaurants and Tourism Association together to push for Jazz Season to be promoted internationally.
15 minutes | Mar 18, 2019
David Rudder - Griot for our Time
In this edition of Talk 'Bout Us, we conclude our Carnival 2019 series The Re-Release with a heavy hitter - David Michael Rudder. Rudder is one of the Caribbean's most influential musical storytellers. His thought-provoking and incisive lyrics have enlightened the Caribbean consciousness with songs like Haiti, Rally Round the West Indies, Ganges Meets the Nile, Calypso Music, Rant of a Madman and 1990. He tells Franka how the events sparked by the death of young black boy in August 1991 in Brooklyn inspired his favourite song. Interestingly, Rudder says his 2019 release Mix It and Bring It is what he would consider his re-release.
14 minutes | Feb 28, 2019
Patrice Roberts - Shy No More
In the latest edition of Talk 'Bout Us, Franka presents the fourth installment of our Carnival 2019 series, The Re-release. Our featured performer started in the calypso arena, winning the national Junior Calypso and Junior Soca Monarch titles in 2001. By 2006, she was part of the band Xtatik and became the youngest Road march winner with the song Band of the Year featuring Machel Montano. Now a solo artist and a mother, this once shy girl from Toco is one of the most consistent and sought after soca artistes on the scene. With songs like A Little Wine, Old and Grey, Big Girl Now, Sweet for Days and this year's Like It Hot, Patrice Roberts is certainly a fan favourite.
18 minutes | Feb 21, 2019
Kes - Singing for the people
Talk 'Bout Us speaks to Trinidadian performer Kees Dieffenthaller for its Carnival 2019 series The Re-Release. Dieffenthaller, lead vocalist of Kes The Band, is one of the Caribbean's most versatile performers with a stack of soca hits, and pop songs that have been chart toppers in places like Greece and Hawaii. His 2019 song Savannah Grass has captured the public imagination and is a frontrunner for the prestigious Road March title. In this edition, Kees tells Franka about the process of creating Savannah Grass with producer Jelani Shaw, how his late father influenced his love for Trinidadian culture and people and he also reveals the songs he would like to rework. CREDITS Produced and presented by Franka Philip Theme music by Lyndon Livingstone (Razorshop Productions) Thanks to Question Mark Entertainment and Kees Dieffenthaller Music credits Savannah Grass written by Kees Dieffenthaller and Jelani "Pops" Shaw, produced by Jelani Shaw. Hello written by Kees Dieffanthaller and Kit Israel, produced by Kit Israel (Advokit Productions)
18 minutes | Feb 15, 2019
3canal - Vibrating the space
In this episode, of Talk 'Bout Us, we are into the second part of our special Carnival 2019 series - The Re-Release. The men of rapso collective 3canal tell us about the songs that have meant the most to them over their more than 20-year career and which songs they think could do with a second outing. 1n 1998, 3canal gave the rapso genre a shot in the arm with their monster hit Blue. In the years that followed, Wendell Manwarren, Stanton Kewley and Roger Roberts (original member John Isaacs passed away in 2000) have been shining a light on society with a style that stays true to a uniquely Trinidadian oral tradition.
20 minutes | Feb 12, 2019
Nadia Batson - Our real Caribbean Girl
Talk 'Bout Us starts a brand new season with Carnival 2019 in full swing in Trinidad and Tobago. The first episode is an interview with soca star and brilliant songwriter Nadia Batson, the woman responsible for writing two of 2019's biggest hits - Hookin' Mih by Farmer Nappy and her own very popular So Long.
22 minutes | Sep 3, 2018
What is Freedom?
In this episode of Talk 'Bout Us that coincides with Trinidad and Tobago's Independence Day, Franka explores the concept of freedom. Recorded exclusively with the Samsung Note 9.
30 minutes | Jul 10, 2018
Who will win the 2018 World Cup?
Talk 'Bout Us asks for predictions from investigative sports journalist Lasana Liburd, founder of popular website Wired868. He looks to the form guide to pick a winner of this year's unpredictable tournament. Lasana and Franka also discuss the future of Trinidad and Tobago football, as fans of the Soca Warriors look longingly toward the 2026 World Cup that is being held in the Concacaf region, with the USA, Canada and Mexico's joint bid recently winning FIFA approval. Also appearing on this episode of Talk 'Bout Us is Shaka Hislop, a Trinidad and Tobago football legend who now works for the ESPN network. Shaka describes how he would restructure the country's football if it is to move forward and make the World Cup dream a reality once again.
31 minutes | Jun 9, 2018
In Trinidad, jazz is an adjective
On the weekend when Trinidad & Tobago's most popular female jazz vocalist, Vaughnette Bigford hosts her first solo show in the capital Port-of-Spain, Franka and Ardene explore the 'jazz economy'. Music analyst and concert promoter Nigel Campbell talks to Franka about jazz as a marketing device for concert promoters, the challenges of having a small pool of local top class performers and the difficulties promoters experience to find affordable foreign acts. Songstress Vaughnette Bigford is excited about her much-anticipated fist solo show in the capital and she sheds some light on her career strategy. CREDITS Produced for Trini Good Media by Franka Philip and Ardene Sirjoo Theme music by Lyndon Livingstone - Razorshop Productions Additional music - Music produced by Michael Low Chew Tung and Rodney Alexander for Elan Parle, Soul on Fire by KMC by (Ken Marlon Charles), Overjoyed by Steveland Morris performed by Esperanza Spalding.
38 minutes | Apr 11, 2018
BONUS: Shorty - The man who united a musical movement
In this bonus episode of Talk 'Bout Us, Franka speaks to children of the late musical pioneer Garfield Blackman, the man who created two musical genres in his lifetime. As Lord Shorty, the sexy, charismatic calypsonian, he is credited with inventing soca in the 1970s - which he originally called sokah. Soca music is now Trinidad and Tobago's most popular national artform. And after devoting himself to God and moving his family to the forest to live off the land, he created Jamoo which is described as "the gospel of soca". Ras Shorty I's musical legacy is back in the spotlight as a result of the success of his children, and most recently because of the meteoric success of his own granddaughter Nailah. His body of work is being celebrated by the University of the West Indies, and the first part of this celebration was The Journey - From Lord Shorty to Ras Shorty I, a concert hosted by the Department of Creative and Festival Arts. You can read the Trini Good Media review of the concert here. Franka also spoke with Carl "Beaver" Henderson, who co-produced Shorty's 1978 album Soca Explosion. He lauds Shorty's musical genius and gives his view on the tag, "Creator of Soca" that has been given to Shorty. CREDITS Produced and presented by Franka Philip Theme music by Lyndon Livingstone - Razorshop Productions Music credits: Shorty Music (Shanti Om, Jamoo and Watch Out My Children),
33 minutes | Apr 2, 2018
Hot stuff in Feteland
After some hitches, Talk 'Bout Us is finally able to present Part Two of the review of Carnival 2018. We apologise for the podcast's lateness, but we hope it's still something our listeners can enjoy. An interview with Caesar's Army commander-in-chief and CEO Jules Sobion is the highlight of Part Two of the Talk 'Bout Us Carnival Review for 2018. Sobion, named entrepreneur of the year in 2017 by the T&T Chamber of Commerce, discusses the expansion of his events empire to Carnivals in the region and beyond. The man behind A.M. Bush and Bacchanal Road explains what makes Caesar's Army fetes unique and touches on the thorny issue of perceived exclusivity of Caesar's Army fetes and other similar events. Franka and Ardene discuss the big soca hits of 2018 and feature short interviews with two of Carnival 2018's biggest stars, Patrice Roberts and Shal Marshall. As the talk turns to fetes, Talk 'Bout Us scores an exclusive as award-winning author Lisa Allen-Agostini reads an unpublished story about a woman at her first big fete. It could be biographical, as Lisa has herself been at the centre of the human maelstrom at the front of big fetes like Fire, Wasa and Caribbean Brass Festival back in the day. Dexter Charles of Kairi People also speaks about how the party promotion group dominates the mid-range all inclusive fete market. Look for Talk 'Bout Us on Stitcher, iTunes and other podcast players. Drop us a line at email@example.com or tweet us at @talkboutuspod. CREDITS Produced by Franka Philip and Ardene Sirjoo Theme music and additional production by Lyndon Livingstone - Razorshop Productions Special thanks to Lisa Allen-Agostini and LoopTT. Music credits: Advokit Productions (Folklore Riddim), Nine Mind Entertainment/Lenkey Records (Upendo Riddim), Ramon "Friction" McDowall (2AM Project), Travis World (Soca Kingdom), District Seven & Teddyson John (Haze Riddim) and Team Foxx Music (Pim Pim Riddim).
42 minutes | Mar 8, 2018
Is Carnival a bacchanal?
In this episode of Talk 'Bout Us, radio broadcaster Sterling Henderson joins Franka and Ardene for a feisty discussion about the calypso, pan and mas of Carnival 2018. They touch on a number of subjects including the near-closure of the Kalypso Revue Tent, BP Rengades' outstanding tenth National Panorama title win and issues surrounding mas in T&T Carnival. CREDITS Produced by Franka Philip and Ardene Sirjoo Theme music by Lyndon Livingstone (Razorshop Productions) Additional music by Helon Francis, BP Renegades and Razorshop Productions.
24 minutes | Feb 1, 2018
Etienne and his Devils
Trinidad & Tobago's leading jazz musician Etienne Charles talks about his latest work Carnival - The Sound of a People 2.0, his love of devil characters in Trinidad Carnival and his 2018 Carnival band.
38 minutes | Jan 16, 2018
Looking into our 2018 crystal ball
The first episode of Talk 'Bout Us looks at entertainment industry highlights of 2017, like new Carnivals, soca music and music policy. We make bold 2018 predictions about the New Fire Festival, Port-of-Spain's live music district, and performers Voice & Nailah Blackman. Franka is joined by three entertainment specialists - Loop TT regional lifestyle editor Laura Dowrich-Phillips, music analyst Nigel Campbell and producer, TV show host & DJ Jayron "Rawkus" Remy. If you want to get in touch, drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet us at @talkboutuspod
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