Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 29th 2014 Contents B3
JUNE 29, 2014
in Racked ---Page B38
Viewers have until July 23 to watch T&T film-
maker Mariel Brown s short documentary
Smallman on the US National Black Program-
ming Consortium (NBPC) Web series AfroPoP:
the Ultimate Cultural Exchange: Caribbean
Smallman was one of four Caribbean films
curated for the Caribbean Shorts series. The
film's Web site describes it thusly: "Smallman
is Richard Mark Rawlins' personal exploration
of the real and imagined worlds that his father,
Kenwyn, made in the workshop beneath their
house." The ten-minute short is based on Rawl-
ins's e-book about his father.
"Short films from all across the Caribbean
Basin are featured in this series," says a note on
the AfroPoP page. "Dramatic, funny and insightful
shorts and documentaries made by Caribbean
filmmakers, celebrating and exploring a diverse
set of identities.
"These shorts explore immigration, life oppor-
tunities, modern Caribbean identity and much,
The series, which ran through the month of
June, celebrated Caribbean Heritage Month, an
annual observance in the US.
Brown said in an e-mail message, "One of the
reasons that I am so encouraged by AfroPoP's
support of Smallman is that it will expose the
film to an entirely different audience in North
CONTINUES ON PAGE B4
Gerry Anthony is out to make a political
statement with his musical act West Indian
Rhythm Konnection (Wirk).
Founded by Anthony in 2012, Wirk has
existed in different incarnations with two
different line-ups of musicians, and more
recently as a solo act. Anthony last performed
with former bandmates Javed "Busco"
Juman, Chris Dopson, Sean McKoon and
Joshua Salcedo in Woodbrook at D Nu Pub
(formerly known as Mas Camp) on June 5.
Since that performance, he has disbanded
the group to perform as a solo artist under
the same name.
Anthony's musical influences are primarily
regional and Wirk's sound is distinctly
"There is definitely a deliberate attempt
to carry on and to work with the styles of
music that would have come out of our
region," said Anthony during an interview
at the Guardian on June 17. He described
Wirk's sound as "neo-kaiso," a blend of tra-
ditional kaiso with other Afro-Caribbean
genres and aesthetics.
While it may stray from some of the con-
ventions of traditional kaiso, Anthony thinks
the nomenclature is valid.
"If the Americans could have neo-soul,
we could have neo-kaiso. Neo-soul doesn't
sound anything like old soul but they still
call it neo-soul. So if the real kaiso aficionados
say that's not kaiso, I say neo-soul doesn't
sound like old soul but we choose to call it
Drawing on names like Eddy Grant, David
Rudder, the Mighty Shadow, Bob Marley,
Bro Resistance and Andre Tanker, Anthony
is setting the stage for his politically conscious
and social-commentary-filled music. For
this 33-year-old, the political message is his
"I approach music as a vehicle to transmit
certain ideological and political concepts,"
"When I say West Indian music' and cel-
ebrating West Indian culture,' it's really more
of a political thing than it is a musical thing.
I think that we have to really work on becom-
ing more assertive and confident as a people
and stop borrowing from other people's cul-
tures. We just keep giving away all our wealth.
"We fail to recognise that we are worthy
enough, and what we have to offer to the
world is worthy enough. What we have to
give is actually very desirable."
In T&T's current musical climate, oppor-
tunities for live bands are slim.
"The underground' music scene in
Trinidad has declined. It has really declined
to the point where it's almost nonexistent,"
In an effort to provide opportunities for
bands to play, he has collaborated with D
Nu Pub to host events with local bands.
"I went to the guys at Mas Camp and
said, Listen. There's all of this great talent
out there. I want to start to use here as a
venue because of the nature of this venue.
It has a rich cultural history of doing that.
All the icons have graced the stage, so I want
to start hosting a series.'"
For Anthony, the project is a continuation
of Wirk's philosophy---developing and cel-
ebrating West Indian music and talent. The
next event is scheduled for July 10 and will
An audio-visual technician by trade,
Anthony believes Wirk has the potential to
stick around for a while.
"The ideas will always be relevant. If people
listen to what I'm actually singing about, it
will always be relevant. Because there's a
deeper philosophy and there's more depth
to it, it will have longevity."
He added, "Wirk, to me, is a movement.
Create a movement and people will identify
more with the deeper essential concepts of
the movement and what it represents more
than just the music form."
A still from Smallman: The World My Father Made.
PHOTO COURTESY: SAVANT LTD
Smallman on AfroPop
Wirk in progress
Gerry Anthony, aka West Indian Rhythm
PHOTO COURTESY: GERRY ANTHONY
Call 492-7516 or visit
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