Six decades ago, when he began singing calypso, there were signs posted in various establishments debarring him from entering. The signs simply read, No Dogs and Calypsonians Allowed. That is where Andrew “Lord Superior” Marcano has come from. Today, he holds an honorary doctorate of letters (DLitt) from The University of the West Indies, St Augustine.
Last week Wednesday Superior’s family and close friends gathered at Kaiso Blues Cafe on Woodford Street, Newtown, to honour him for his achievements and to celebrate his 80th birthday.
His former wife, Dr Janet Stanley Marcano, is the one who coined the phrase from “dog to Doctor.”
In her address to the gathering, she said she was married to a gentleman and a scholar, a perfectionist, idealist and a man who always knew what he wanted.
“Even though we are divorced so long, I am still Supie’s wife. I remember the long, lonely walks to the courthouse when he was fighting to get a radio licence, the years of toiling, his vision for a year-round calypso tent.
“A few years ago, it gave me great pleasure to be at his side when he was ill and [see] him through yet another battle in his life.”
Superior’s grandson Lee and granddaughter Anika saw him perform for the first time in their lives, having come from Canada for the occasion. His friend Geoffrey Dunn also flew in from California, USA, for the event.
Superior was surrounded by folks who love and appreciate his contribution to the calypso art form as well as being a very good friend. People like Earl Lovelace, Lennox Toussaint, Prof Rhoda Reddock, Brother Valentino and his wife Peggy, Dawad Phillip, Diane Dupres, Kenny Phillip and Explainer attended.
The evening was filled with classic calypsoes performed by Abebele, Twiggy, Valentino, GB, Short Pants, Poser, Mudada, Lady Adana and even Superior himself. Each and every performer had a story to tell about Superior’s kindness and the push he gave them to start their careers.
Patrons received cup cakes and a complimentary drink as they toasted to the living legend of calypso.
Photos by Gary Cardinez