Home / A/V Room / Chasing Greatness868 (Video): David Rudder on Bahia Girl, Uzi diplomacy and High Mas

Chasing Greatness868 (Video): David Rudder on Bahia Girl, Uzi diplomacy and High Mas

What is the pathway to greatness in Trinidad and Tobago?

Musical icon David Rudder shares the secret of Bahia Girl, the aftershocks of the 1990 attempted coup, High Mas and what music says about our lives today.


About Lasana Liburd

Lasana Liburd
Lasana Liburd is the CEO and Editor at Wired868.com and a journalist with over 20 years experience at several Trinidad and Tobago and international publications including Play the Game, World Soccer, UK Guardian and the Trinidad Express.

Check Also

TTFA v FIFA: Wired868’s Lasana Liburd talks to TV6 Morning Edition

Why has Fifa shut down the TTFA Board? And what can besieged TTFA president William …


  1. 1990, the cache of guns came in and NO governmetn dealt with the issue, instead CRIME continued to fester, which successive governments politick. The PP opened all the borders and left them with no patrolling and let the guns, drugs and human trafficking to come in and grow. NOW they talking, instead of continuing what the previous government had in place they disbanded everything . Why? who is CRIME working for?

  2. Awesome interview. Well done Lasana

  3. Excellent delivery David Rudder. I thoroughly enjoyed.

  4. A friend to the soul , very lovely writing Calabash Besson

  5. Amazing artist, person,….. true Caribbean icon ,…. respect David Rudder

  6. This David Rudder interview was a friend to the soul. Quite the historian, entertainer, pioneer, and legend.

  7. For some reason, I also believe that 1990 was a “tipping point”. While A Corey has a very strong point about immunity (Brad Boyce) , somehow it did feel that from the mid-seventies through the 80s we were defining something. Somethung unique and great about Trinidad and the West Indies as a whole. Despite the tremendous problems we had (corruption, drugs etc.) many seemed to have a sense of a brighter future and a sense of destiny and a willingness to contribute to that destiny. I think that 1990, with the subsequent pardons, broke that. Now, we live in a patchwork society. Each man for themself. Amid a cloud of impending doom , particularly with respect to upholding Law. It is difficult to pin down, but, I know that I feel very different about who we are as a people before and after that point in history.

    • Damian St. Hill, I don’t want to make it seem like I am taking an ‘either/or’ approach. I don’t discount the fact that the pardoning of the JAM may have taken the level of violent crime higher, I just dismiss the notion that things spiked *because* of them. I argued in another space that the culture of impunity was there since the 19th century in full view of the ordinary labouring classes from whom most of the gangs come from. When around 1935 Growling Tiger sang “He can commit murder and get off free/And live in the Governor’s company”, he didn’t necessarily sing that in abstract; in the 1930s the talk was still circulating where, according to Arthur Calder-Marshall in Glory Dead: “the Acting Solicitor-General can continue to prosecute his fellow citizens for sedition and murder.” Further in his diaries, abbe Armand Masse informs us on 30th November 1879: “Someone belonging to one of the most respectable families of Trinidad, having killed his wife through jealousy, was not condemned to death through consideration for his family, but to life imprisonment.”

      It must also be noted that much of the spike in violent crime came from the escalation of the drug trade which began to take off in the mid-80s and on that note, we must remember that the JAM was one of the few organisations that took on the drug traffickers with the intention of disrupting their operations (some may argue so as to take it over), but there is some merit in what is outlined by people like abu Bakr and Dairius Figueria especially when you consider that the US, since the 1970s has been flooding Jamaica and many South American countries with arms and drugs. Strange how that is left out of most conversations.

    • Agreed. I have no doubt about what you say. As I hinted above, Brad Boyce. Using Darius Figuera’s writings makes it very clear to me why we continue to suffer the climb in murder rates. (I also have other thoughts on that as it is clear to me that this focus on a few “bad boys” is merely so much smoke) My suggestion is that many, in what we would determine to be middle-class, used to be appalled and willing to fight back against the rise of the elements in the country. By whateber means was available to them. There was a sense of country. Of our unique place in the world. There seemed to be a sense that we had a chance of holding , or even pushing back, the tide. Now, it feels like most have given up, and are willing to see only about themselves. It could be simply coincidence in timing, I guess, but I know a lot of people who also feel the same. The society seems even more fractured. More walls built against each other. A beautiful environment for crime to flourish.

    • “what we would determine to be middle-class, used to be appalled and willing to fight back against the rise of the elements in the country. By whateber means was available to them. There was a sense of country.”

      I was hustling out the door Damian, to go do my coaching so i couldn’t respond to what I felt this statement you made here overlooked. There’s one very important thing outlined by CLR James in his book “Party Politics in the West Indies” as well as this what I took from an unpublished doctoral dissertation. The writer tells us that concerning that middle class you spoke about:
      “there seems to be a marked ambivalence on the part of the educated black and Coloured advocates for reform and self-government to include the masses in any capacity except as leverage…the reformers’ desires in Trinidad were not so much for a change of system, rather to create an oligarchy which included them as beneficiaries and hierarchs rather than supplicants and sufferers.”

  8. Great dialogue, keep it going so necessary

  9. Thanks much for this. The one part I have a problem with is at 22:01 when he attributes the current “unruliness” to how the members of the Jamaal al Muslimeen essentially got away with all what had transpired during the coup of 1990. I reject that argument; the culture of criminal impunity goes back long before Bakr was born. The historical record is very clear on this.

  10. really down to earth man yes

  11. Will Always Be Proud Of You David M Rudder Keep It Coming.

  12. Calypso and Soca, Soka Icon. David Rudder helped shape Trini Music. Thanks for your contribution.

  13. Hail the

    Hail the King, a date to be top priority in all the madness

  14. Thanks David Michael and 868 for this Interview. Very refreshing Always One of my favourite calypso singer. We go back a long time.

  15. David rudder is and still the best…

  16. Greatest music ever. Artists nowadays cannot even compete with him, David Michael Rudder!!!

  17. We attended Belmont Boys RC Primarily School, and grew up in Belmont at the same time. He would often be called upon to sing a hymn on the school stage.

  18. this was when calypso use to make sense not everything was about woman bottom and verses that made no sense

  19. This man is one of my favorites. His musicianship is fantastic. Nice interview

  20. bring de sweetness back, please, please!!!

  21. David thanks for the great music school mate Belmont methodist

  22. For real this generation really dumb down.

  23. wire u chasing after music too i didn’t no dat

  24. The fella has class and is well grounded.

  25. Thank you Dr. David Rudder keep the education coming brother. #bostoncarnivalvillage

  26. Enjoyed the conversation it opened up so much meaning to the calypso music that I love so much……Thank you Professor

  27. Thanks for the music King, great input…..nice interview.

  28. I’m a fan of him as well …..intelligent dude!!

  29. Belmont’s great contribution to our Society.

  30. He is our living legend celebrate. Him now let us don’t wait till he is gone. Thank u Mr David Rudder .

  31. I am keeping the variety of melody in my life. Will always be a devoted fan of David Rudder. Keep bringing the spice in our music. It will infiltrate the masses again.

  32. The bell belonged to Brother Resistance.

  33. Reflections that should make each of us sit-up and think deeply about how we can and must make a difference in our country. Gratitude

  34. I salute u King David Rudder, a true Kaisonian

  35. Lasana Liburd thanks for this, truely a memorable and important interview. Well done

  36. top class…well done Lasana Liburd and Mr David Rudder

  37. ” See the Raggamuffin Congregate “

    • Thanks Dan. I really enjoyed that. It was an hour long chat and it was almost cruel to cut it so short.
      Hopefully one day, I can use some more as he spoke at length about creating “Calypso Music” and the drama of the 1987 final when he went toe to toe with the Black Stalin, the 1990 coup, his love for sport, his Belmont upbringing and raising Trini children in Canada.
      It was all good enough to be in this.

    • I’d love to see that sometime. It seemed like there was more to be said.

  38. Always a historian yes… My favorite Kaisonian… Hoosay always makes me teary eyed… Anthony Morgan Beach ah kno yuh go love what he say about “mumble rap” I think he should be featured in a song writing camp yes… proper song composition seems to be a dying art in our culture…

  39. That’s what I’ve been saying…

  40. One of my favorite artistes ever. Just finished watchin it. Very insightful.

  41. Belmont you did a great job keeping the culture alive

  42. I can’t believe I edited out his making of “Calypso Music”. Smh. Shame on me. Maybe sometime I can revisit that interview and throw in an additional eight minutes.
    But I agree DeNyssa, he is blessed. It’s amazing how he harmonises words on the street, emotion and current affairs into something so gripping and touching.

  43. Rich history lesson too I love David Rudder so creative

  44. Excellent production Lasana Liburd and team. So very true too “me and” it’s a me first world we’re living in. He is still so relevant

  45. Michael Samuel, thanks again for being so generous with your time. There was so much more that I would have loved to share from our talk… but I was forced to cut (sigh!) to stay within particular time frame.
    This is already long for online and is almost an experiment in attention spans. Lol.