Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 20th 2013 Contents B1
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US reality star Phil
Robertson has been sus-
pended from his TV show
following derogatory re-
marks about homosexual-
ity.Robertson had been
asked to describe sin by GQ
magazine, and replied:
"Start with homosexual
behaviour and just morph
out from there."
He went on to para-
phrase the Bible, con-
demning bestiality and
TV network A&E said it
was "extremely disap-
pointed," adding the com-
ments were based on
Robertson s "personal be-
liefs" and "in no way re-
flect those of A&E."
More than nine million
viewers regularly watch re-
ality sitcom Duck Dynasty
in the US.
It follows the lives of the
Robertson family, a clan
with old-fashioned values
who live together in
Louisiana, running their
multi-million dollar family
business, Duck Com-
products for duck hunters.
The show---now in its
fourth series---has broken
several ratings records on
both A&E and cable televi-
sion as a whole, with the
fourth season premiere
drawing 11.8 million view-
Ancil Valley is like a walking juke-
box. Just ask him to sing a song
and he takes out his phone, selects
a track and begins to croon. The Digicel
Rising Star winner impressed the music-
loving women in the T&T Guardian
newsroom, as he dropped classic oldies
Valley won the $250,000 first prize
ahead of Tisha Gittens last Sunday at the
Digicel Rising Stars Finale. The songs he
performed in the final were Progress by
King Austin, Stand by Donnie McClurkin
and Tarrus Riley s One Drop.
The 36-year-old father of four says with
his prize money he intends on giving back
to charity, investing in his music and, of
course, putting a portion towards savings.
To those who may have found Valley s
face familiar, it s probably because he was
a returning contestant to Rising Stars. In
the competition s inaugural year, 2006,
he placed fourth, a position that left him
feeling emotionally bruised.
Retracing his steps, he says: "Naively,
I wanted to win every round. I wanted to
put on a good show all the time.
"I wanted to be the first in first. That
approach worked against me, though,
because I became my own competitor."
San Fernando-born Valley recalled the
moment it all crumbled for him.
"I crashed my attempt to perform Isaac
Blackman s To the Ceiling. I made a last-
minute decision to sing this song because
I was unable to obtain the track for the
song I originally planned on singing,
another song produced by Isaac Blackman
"In hindsight, trying to perform a song
of a vocal phenom at a competition is
probably not the best idea. I found out
on that night that it was impossible to
imitate his vocal inflections,"said Valley.
Not even Valley s heartfelt appeal to the
voting public encouraged them to overlook
that one unimpressive performance.
"When I placed fourth in the compe-
tition I was deeply hurt and I kept trying
to understand the meaning of it all---mov-
ing from the most celebrated in the com-
petition to the person with tears streaming
down my face in the back of a taxi heading
back home to San Fernando.
"What made it even worse the song I
intended to redeem myself with was play-
ing loud and clear on the radio station.
And I thought to myself, not a wonderful
world," said Valley, who can now look back
at that failure with a smile.
Valley said he learned the importance
of being consistent and pacing himself
through the stages of a competition.
With those years behind him, Valley
began making major career decisions. At
the start of 2012 he made the decision to
transition fully into his music.
Leaving his job as a supply chain officer
with South West Regional Health Authority
(SWRHA) behind, Valley believed it was
time for him to follow his dream.
Continues on Page B5
Duck Dynasty star suspended for anti-gay views
DIGICEL RISING STARS 2013
2013 Digicel Rising Stars winner Ancil Valley, left,
and runner-up Tisha Gittens show off their trophies.
PHOTO COURTESY DIGICEL
Entering the Digicel Rising Stars
competition wasn't part of Ancil
Valley's plans but the 36-year-old
now sees how he can use his win
to propel the next phase of his
career, launching a band in 2014.
PHOTO: ABRAHAM DIAZ
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