The band honored at the 18th edition of the World Creole Music Festival (WCMF) has said the group is not getting the respect it deserves in Dominica.
Midnight Groovers, a cadence band in existence for 46 years received the lifetime achievement award on Saturday evening for the group’s contribution to Creole Music.
Backup vocalist, Reynold Alcendor, during an interview with the media shortly after the band’s performance said the The Midnight Groovers is given much more appreciation abroad than in Dominica.
“I don’t think the band is getting the respect that it deserves in Dominica,” he said. “When the band travels to countries like St Lucia, United States of America (USA) people appreciate the band, people enjoy the band, but in Dominica the band is not getting the respect that it deserves.”
He stated that people have to go on social media, or call talk shows to ask that Midnight Groovers be added to the the WCMF lineup.
“I mean I am not saying that we should be on every year, however a band like that, we should not be begging for Midnight Groovers or Chubby and Coe to be on the World Creole Music Festival,” he stated. “The way they are treating us we really don’t like it.”
He noted that if it wasn’t for band leaders such a Philip “Chubby” Mark and “Coe,” Cadence would not be part of the musical landscape.
Alcendor mentioned that the two band members are thinking of retiring.
“I believe it’s because of all what they are going through in the music industry and the way they are being treated in Dominica …. that’s why probably they are thinking of retiring,” Alcendor revealed.
He noted that Midnight Groovers has remained loyal to Dominica when other groups such as Grammaks, Exile One, Liquid Ice and others left Dominica.
“Chubby and Coe stayed here in Dominica and they maintained the Cadence music,” Alcendor said.
He said in light of the concerns raised, he was confident that the band performed well.
Meanwhile, Chubby said he plays music to please the nation and the younger generation.
“I am not really playing music for myself. I am only playing music to please the nation and the younger generation…it is my duty to be here still and to educate the youth in the music with good words,” Chubby said.
He said that love is the secret that kept The Midnight Groovers going for close to five decades.
“The secret is love, it can’t be nothing else expect for love and unity,” he stated. “I am not looking for plenty I just want to make sure I satisfy my viewers…”
He did mention that he is thinking of retiring, “but I don’t know when.”
However, Chubby said he has a vision.
“What I am saying is I am going to build a hall, put some equipment inside of it and then I will do my best to teach the youth to play Cadence music in Dominica,” he stated.
He called on the young musicians to focus on God and warns that they should avoid producing songs with “slackness.”
“When I say slackness I am talking about words that makes no sense,” he explained. “I mean man making songs about Bend Down Low, man making songs about whine, whine, whine …if you make a song about do not hit your father, because if you hit him you might kill him, that is better than making a song bend down and whine your waist. The majority of artistes at this year time that is what they are doing. I already hear man curse on CD and that is a shame in front of the Most High.”
Other performances came from Zouk All Stars, Haitian band Klass who performed for the first time in Dominica at the WCMF.
Also, Trinidad Soca artistes, Kerwin Du bois, Destra and Denise Belfon all gave spectacular performances.