Orange Sky, The Colour Of Unity

I think I should talk about us getting Orange Sky to perform at our big rally. They obviously see the vision of the Alliance, and it makes sense that Orange Sky be the band that performed for us. The reason the sky was orange? It was the colour thanks to the rising sun. Mr. Rojas and I have been friends for a long time. Nigel came to me one day. He was telling me about wanting to start this band and had to come up with a name. I had suggested “Dead Balisierz,” “C.E.P.O.O.P,” and “Hartless Valley” but we decided to go with the UNC theme, rising sun. Thus, Orange Sky was born.

I would like to take this opportunity to again thank, publicly, the band for their showing faith in the future of the country. Countries. Countrii? I usually forget about Tobago? I just remembered I would have to deal with the pain in the ass THA. I think we’ll go through with the idea of selling them to Barbados. More on that another time, if the readers are interested.

Again, thanks Orange Sky.

Would you vote for a party that has the support of moderately successful Orange Sky? Or go for other parties who have radio jingles?

I think the country is really getting what it is I am saying, thanks to the blog. My country, you are welcome.

By Gail Alexander

Some people just don’t get it.

Nigel Rojas is shaking his head in resignation (and the massive “dreds” bob along.)

“We’ll take the licks,” he muses.

“I knew even before Orange Sky took on the job of appearing at UNC rallies that people who are obviously supporters of other parties would take it personally…be annoyed at what we’re doing and would criticise us.”

“But that’s what democracy’s about: freedom of choice.

“I imagine people who are hitting our UNC appearances are passionate about their belief in other parties. We respect such obvious loyalities. But we stand our ground.”

Rojas isn’t behind a microphone. He’s in Tobago, prepping for a UNC rally at Macoya’s Centre of Excellence on Sunday.

Away from the high energy atmosphere of the stage, he’s philosophical as he defends the popular band’s appearances at UNC campaign rallies, a major drawing card.

To local music aficionados, Rojas is a larger than life figure with voice and talent to match.

Orange Sky—Rojas on lead vocals, his brother Nicholas (bass), keyboardist Richard Hall, drummer Obassi Springer and percussionist Clive Griffith—has had a following since the ’90s.

The local rock band grew from northern roots to acquire a hardcore countrywide following with its mix of pithy lyrics, hard-hitting, polished sound and energetic performances.

It was the UNC which cottoned on to the magic of the OS brand and grabbed it before other political parties could get hold.

And Rojas has no regrets about the situation.

PNM “at heart”

“I don’t think Patrick Manning or the PNM is evil,” Rojas said.

“Dr Eric Williams is one of my all-time heroes…I love him. I’m PNM in my heart.

“If Williams was alive today, I feel he’d support UNC’s vision for love and unity…Because that’s what it’s really all about.”

Since March, Rojas’ lyric writing began assuming a political bent after he went through a grinder of experiences.

“My son was in hospital, and it made me realise my country had become a Fifth World state,” he said.

“You have a huge picture of the Health Minister on a wall, but you have to bring everything—down to toilet paper—with you.”

His family’s experience as victims of crime during a Balandra weekend also lent to his perspective.

“T&T is a paradise but it’s turned into a Paro-dise because people have become paranoid…You can’t leave a door unlocked,” Rojas said.

“You can’t go round the Savannah for a coconut.”

From his experiences came Rough and Tumble, Wicked System and Meditation, which cites the failure of the powers-that-be.

“The vibe in the street is for change…People picked up on our lyrics,” Rojas said.

“When UNC contacted us, they said the Chaguanas rally was basically a peace concert with Martin Luther King Jr’s son and Gandhi Foundation representatives.

“It was in that spirit we agreed to perform.

“We shared their opinion on peace and change…so it was inevitable.”

Proud to be part of Jack’s vision

 

“The river’s course has taken us to the political side,” Rojas said.

“It’s breaking ground…We’re going with it.

“Fans of our six records understand what we’re really about. They see us a musical force appealing to anyone.”

Rojas’ take on the situation goes further:

“T&T is a ‘festival’ society…You have entertainment in the midst of various events.

“When you bring people home, you offer them refreshments to break the ice,” he said.

“Music is that sort of unifying force that lends to a political gathering. That’s where we come in. It’s work for us.”

While not disclosing the remuneration, Rojas added: “I’m very proud to be part of Jack Warner and Basdeo Panday’s vision of a unified T&T… I’m not in the habit of making decisions irrationally.

“Musicians appear five times more passionately than other individuals…But this is what we do,” he said.

“I have no problem if people say things about me…it’s all about the music.”

Orange Sky is scheduled to tour Europe in December and is also preparing for Joey Sabeeney’s concert featuring rock giants Kansas and Blue Oyster Cult at Pier 1 on November 3.

Meantime, completing the UNC “circuit,” Rojas said:

“When the smoke clears, we’ll all move on…”

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8 Comments

Filed under music, UNC

8 responses to “Orange Sky, The Colour Of Unity

  1. Orange Sky!! I need to find out more. I first read about these guys three years ago when I was flying between gigs in the Caribbean islands in an in-flight magazine. The description of their music appealed to me. I need to know where I can hear there stuff, anyone out there who can help?

  2. Observer

    Kevmore if you want find Orange Sky just follow the smell of burning ganja or the trail of money Jack give them to wine for Bas. Remember Karl and ‘wine Dorothy’? This time is ‘wine Rojas’. I see Oma face in the rally. If Jack give she scholarship money for the girls she would wine too. Wine everybody, wine.

  3. Observer, let me look into the politics of the region, so I can make an informed choice. I know music can be an effective political tool, but Im never comfortable with that.

  4. basdeopanday

    You need to know about the politics? Then read the blog? How many former Prime Ministers do you know that blog AND have moderately successful rock bands support them? Sure, I have that minor court matter, but it’s minor, I think it’s over a parking ticket or something. No reason not to vote for me.

  5. Abu Bakr

    I was ah Prime Minister too. Sorta.

    Doh forget that.

    Big cheez no. 1, supervising the bunning and looting of a whole town.

    Aiiiiiiiiiii dem was the days.

  6. Abu Bakr

    This blog gives me a happy feeling.

    Like when I see a kid napping
    in a hammock.

    My wives know me as the worlds No.1 jerk
    chicken fan.

    Trinis at large see me as someone who causes crime, drug dealing, and thuggery
    to slow down in my area.

    Politicians and journalist are afraid of me
    retiring and taking some sunshine out of their lives.

    But you Panday, will for COP Trinidad
    be a person to reckon with

    I am Abu Bakr and Allah has approved this message.

  7. Please, vote COP for progress.

  8. Oma

    Btw Pandy seeing that you have Ramesh, I tink its time dat d world know about Nigel and me. Yuh no what dey say, once yuh go black….
    What you feelin I was smilin at d rally for…..

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