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Saturday 15 December 2018
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Charmaine Forde homecoming

Charmaine Forde
Charmaine Forde

GARY CARDINEZ

SUPREMELY vivacious and engaging, Charmaine Forde is a widely-acclaimed, versatile and authentic entertainer. As a singer, television talk show host and radio DJ – in Canada, South Florida, TT and several other Caribbean islands, Charmaine charms, captivating her audience melodiously and emotionally.

Forde demonstrated her gifts of exceptional musical talent as a singer and a magnetic personality at an early age when she participated in the popular talent show Scouting for Talent. This success launched her career in the entertainment field in 1980. She became an “instant sensation” when she collaborated with renowned musician guitarist Michael Boothman and singer/songwriter Carl Jacobs producing smash hits such as Waiting for Love, international pop singer Bobby Caldwell’s classic hit What You Won’t Do for Love, Hero and Leston Paul’s Gonna Dance.

Her rich and soulful voice, akin to a blend of international divas Chaka Khan, Natalie Cole, and Nancy Wilson, earned her the nickname Champagne Charmaine by her fans.

Drawing on her experiences in the expanding entertainment industry in the Caribbean, both as a singer and professional dancer –she danced with the Eugene Joseph Dance Theatre Network– Forde launched several television specials on the then Trinidad and Tobago Television (TTT). After gaining insight into the power of music and artistes to engage the public in discourse on social issues and current affairs in the tradition of calypsonians, she became a presenter and host.

The popularity of the programmes paved the way toward another dimension of her entertainment career. She produced, hosted and starred in her own television show –A Touch of Charm!

Yearning for further knowledge and experience in using music as a communication tool, Forde migrated to Florida in the mid-80s where, besides performing to live audiences at public and private venues, she hosted a weekly radio programme, The Charmaine Forde Show, on WHTY 1600AM. She also signed with CBS Radio which gave her access to audiences on several of its ethnic and R&B stations.

Stephen Encinas, Mike Boothman
and Charmaine Forde perform
earlier this year.

During her many years abroad Forde made several visits to her homeland to keep in touch with the changing music industry and to perform in several concerts.

Now back home for good, the ever-evolving entertainer, with her now considerable wealth of experience engaging with audiences, has now conceptualised a television show with a difference – one that uses music to explore, to celebrate, to promote discussion, to dig deep and to heal.

Her homecoming will be celebrated with a concert, We Kinda Jazz the Christmas Edition, at Kaiso Blues Cafe, Wrightson Road, Port of Spain on December 16. Forde will team up with long-time friends, Boothman and singer/songwriter/producer and pianist Stephen Encinas, for the concert.

In the words of James Baldwin, “Every artist is involved with one single effort, really, which is somehow to dig down to where reality is. . . Artists are the only people in society who can tell that society the truth about itself.”

Recognising, like David Rudder, that we have been given “this art so that we can all feel a part of this earthly heaven," Forde’s music will serve as the gateway to a stimulating career in her return to TT.

 

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