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Calypso and Meringues

Various Artists
Calypso and Meringues

Calypso and Meringues, released in 1953, juxtaposes the song traditions of two Caribbean islands: Haiti and Trinidad. The first half of the album presents renowned calypso masters Lord Invader and Macbeth the Great, along with other performers, performing renditions of calypso classics like “Mary Anne” and “Dorothy One Morning.” Versions of lesser-known calypsos appear as well. The second half of the album features Port-au-Prince-based septet, the Jazz Majestic Orchestra, performing four traditional Haitian meringues in a contemporary style. In the liner notes, jazz scholar Frederic Ramsey Jr. provides information on the origins and cultural meaning of calypso. In addition, noted folklorist and song collector Harold Courlander, who recorded the meringues in Haiti, supplies a history of the music and dance.

Track Listing

Carnival Is Bacchanal Lord Caresser 1:54
Mary Anne Lord Invader 2:27
Druscilla Duke of Iron 2:52
Cousin Family Lord Invader 2:23
Dorothy, One Morning Macbeth the Great 2:52
Nous Allons Dodo (We Are Going to Sleep) Jazz Majestic Orchestra 1:37
Trois Fois Trois (Three Times Three) Jazz Majestic Orchestra 2:37
Angélique, Oh (Angelica, Oh) Jazz Majestic Orchestra 3:09
Ménage Qui Belle (Beautiful Sweetheart) Jazz Majestic Orchestra 3:34