Rapso group 3canal will set out to raise the consciousness of patrons when the group hosts their seventh edition concert ReThePublic. This year, the concert will commemorate the nation's 50th Independence anniversary and 36 years as a Republic. The concert takes place at The Greens of the Queen's Park Oval this Sunday, and will feature performances by Roy Cape All Stars, featuring Blaxx; Calypso icon, Black Stalin; Republic Bank Exodus and 3canal and the cut + clear crew.
Last year, the concert, which was held in the middle of the state of emergency dealt with crime, the government, society and the consciousness of the people, with warnings to "wake up", and "know your rights". Wendell Manwarren of 3canal said this year, the concert will place emphasis on the mood of the people and will deal with issues that are pertinent but in a way in which patrons can still have fun.
Manwarren said this year he aims to present a bigger show in celebration of the Independence and Republic Day anniversaries.
"The concert was done in previous years at Central Bank and at Queen's Hall but people have been complaining that they couldn't free up and dance, so we are giving them that opportunity to enjoy themselves. We will tap in to the mood of the people and we will be dealing with issues in a fun and serious way at the same time. "We always try to mix the message so we can leave you thinking while you enjoy the moment," Manwarren said.
Mannwarren feels honoured to have teamed up with icons like Black Stalin and Roy Cape All Stars for 'ReThePublic.' He said the concert will feature music by the people for the people. "It's a big honour to team up with Black Stalin; for me as a youth growing up Black Stalin was singing issues like 'Caribbean Man' and other issues of the day and people would still listen and have a good time and that is one of the things we try to do with our music . The concert will represent some the best things this country has given birth too. There is pan in the form of Exodus, soca from Roy Cape All Stars featuring Blaxx, calypso by Black Stalin and there is rapso from 3 Canal; nothing imported," Manwarren said.
Sagicor Exodus was established in May 1981 by a group of young men and women primarily from the Tunapuna /St Augustine area and environs. The band entered its first National Panorama competition a mere nine months later and was a national finalist in this debut year. Since then there was no stopping Sagicor Exodus and the achievements over the years include: Four National Panorama championships, three Music Steelband Festival championships, two World Steelband Music championships, The Caribbean Panorama championship and the Champion of Champion Steelband celebration of their 40th Anniversary of Panorama. In fact Sagicor Exodus is the reigning Steelband Music Festival champion, a title the band won at Madison Square Garden New York in 2005. Sagicor Exodus has toured internationally on several occasions and are performed at a number of major cities and concert halls worldwide. Sagicor Exodus was honoured with Trinidad and Tobago's second highest national award The Chaconia Medal (Gold) in 2003.
Manwarren has promised a fresh and engaging performance from the cut + clear crew. Besides old favourites like 'Talk Yuh Talk,' 'Blue', 'Ben Lion' and 'Good Mornin' the groups' repertoire will also feature new material and will include 'Giants', a song Manwarren said celebrates the rich history of this country and deals with the need for healing for society and tolerance for each other. Manwarren believes that some in society still have not understood the concept of being "Republic".
"Republic is the least celebrated of all the holidays that we have. I don't think people understand what it means to have 'republican status'. People need to be reminded of their constitutional rights and other freedoms due to them as citizens of the Republic. We are the people. We have to determine what type of people we want to be and what type of country we want. Republic helps us to understand the need to be self determinant and affirm ourselves positively," Manwarren said.
15 years ago 3canal set upon a musical journey with the simple phrase "3canal making a statement." Describing themselves then, as a performance and visual arts collaborative and inspired and guided by the rich legacy of the giants of the local music and cultural scene, they 'walked the road' paved by the great icons, and have bridged the gaps of race, class, and generation.
Over the years they have composed some seminal hits, which have become a part of our musical fabric. Over the last 15 years, they have also produced annually, one of the country's biggest and most vibrant Jouvert bands.
Along the journey they have collaborated and worked closely with cultural greats, most notably Andre Tanker on the hit 'Ben Lion'  which was a serious contender for the road march that year. They also set about cutting a path for themselves and creating opportunities for younger artistes through their annual Carnival spectacle, The 3canal Show as well as through their self-styled events celebrating national identity for Emancipation (Freedom.com), Independence (ndepenDance), and Republic Day (ReThePublic).