Peter Ram performs in the House of Soca. (Picture by Christoff Griffith)
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When you hear the name Peter Ram these days you may think soca and party music. Depending on your age, you may remember him as a dub artiste and doing those popular store ads with Natahlee.
By now you may have heard that he is back in the Pic-O-De-Crop fray and ready to challenge for a place among the 16 finalists.
Performing De Gathering in the C.O. Williams House Of Socacalypso tent, which opened las month at the Derrick Smith School auditorium, the popular entertainer got an encore. He did a freestyle verse which the audience loved.
“It is [a] beautiful thing to be in the tent again. It’s a good feeling being around the artistes and entertainers and thing and I would like to see more people coming out to the tent.
“It is a beautiful thing, fuh real. I would like we to get back the tent [vibe]. I would like Bachannal Time to come back as a big tent too. Tent used to be sweet in dem days. We could make it happen,” he toldWeekend Buzz.
Ram believes that the new one-song format for the calypso competition will bring more people to the tents.
“Two tune was good. If you remember back in the days (Crop Over 2003) when I had The Pledge, dey was going to a one song too, and quick so they change it ’cause if dey had the one song, I know I wudda beat dem bad.
“Dey back to the one-song again and, yeah, it’s a one-song thing. More people will come and it got to change up. You gine get all kinds of different social commentaries, not just the [slower tempo]. You gine get some mid-tempo too, you might even get a fast one [like] when Edwin [Yearwood] had Obadele. So, when people hear social commentary they think slow [tempo]. . . It’s the topic. It could be any rhythm, a groovy rhythm,” he said.
Why did the 2015 Party Monarch enter Pic-O-De- Crop?
“Hearing the CEO [of the National Cultural Foundation] Ms Carol Roberts-Reifer talking ’bout de tent, you got to get back in dat vibe. We got to get back de Crop Over feeling, I tell myself, ‘You know what? I will do a little social commentary, go have some fun in the tent”.
“I’m always welcome in House Of Soca. For years I was doing House of Soca along with Bacchanal Time,” he said.
Ram said performing in a tent is different and he shared that he had to “go in a zone” to prepare.
“You have to go in a different zone. I ain’t come as Peter Ram tonight; I come as Miss Wiggins’ last son. It’s a different zone, fuh real . . . . and there’s people dat sitting down still. I always like when I go on the stage people jumping up and ready. We gone and we could pull up the band and wheel out.
“Wid [de tent] band, we can’t do that really. So, it’s just a calm down thing. De people listening, watching yuh . . . so you got to work wid de people and deal wid it nice.
“When I get dat encore I say, ‘Wow, I got to freestyle something’. I mek up dah right there and then,” Ram said.
The experienced performer wrote De Gathering but it was his girlfriend who gave him the concept after recalling plans for Government’s Vision 2020: We Gathering which encourages Bajans abroad to come home to celebrate the country.
However, he said the concept is also a call to stop the violence and unite.
“[There’s] not one focus on 2020 but gathering as in coming together and leh we have some fun. Done wid de violence and put down de gun, as it’s only one way we can make this thing happen, you know.
“If we come together, we can make it work but if we space out, if everybody got different ideas and nobody ain’ sharing ideas wid one another [it can’t]. Come together and fix it up and we gine be good.” (GBM)