2009 Groovy Soca Monarch, Brown Sugar (Beverly Browne), has confirmed that she will be defending her ‘groovy’ title with On De Dance Floor, as well as competing in the calypso monarch competition with I Will Survive.
Brown Sugar has been with the ABC since 2004, and is the UK’s first female calypsonian to win the calypso monarch title in two consecutive years (2006 and 2007); she came in second last year. Leading the new wave of female dominance in British calypso, she also won the Groovy Soca competition in 2008.
From Trinidad and now based in Oxford, Brown Sugar began competing in 2001 at Trinidad Central Bank. After moving to the UK in 2003, she entered AJ’s Calypso Tent in Reading, later discovering the London Calypso Tent at Yaa Asantewaa. “I’m from Trinidad, which is the home of calypso, and as a child I started singing gospel. I am heavily involved in the church and still sing, but calypso is something which I have grown to love,” says Browne.
Brown Sugar won the first Calypso Monarch competition in Reading, which recognised the emancipation of slaves and the abolition of slavery, and performed at Oxford Carnival in 2007. She says, “My future plans involve producing an album over here and working to ensure that calypso is more accessible to people in the UK, as well as working to see more calypso-inspired nights throughout the year.”
The Groovy Soca Monarch Competition will take place tonight at Carnival Village, Powis Square, London, W11 2AY. For more information on the event click here