Monday 4th January, 2010 --
Carnival is supposed to be freedom. Freedom from stress, freedom from pain, and freedom to let go of your inhibitions, in a way you can’t at any other time of the year.

Recently though, it seems to be more about being at the ‘right’ fete, with the ‘right’ people, and posing looking the ‘right’ way. The essence of bacchanal and fun seems to have been exchanged for a stiff all-about-appearances vibe in fetes from north to south.

Shawn “Ma$tamind” Noel is determined to bring back the “Madness” that has defined the season that is Carnival here in Trinidad and Tobago from back in the day when rebel tamboo bamboo bands roamed Port of Spain and later on when following a steelband meant you were a badjohn.

He describes his latest offering for Carnival 2K10, as a release for himself and for all of the true Soca and Feteing diehards that allows them to reclaim the energy he remembers at parties during the season so many years ago.

The lyrics of the song clearly indicate a distaste for those who hold themselves back and who scorn the real revelers who let nothing and no one stand in the way of them having a good time once the music begins to play.

When asked if he is concerned about alienating the more “hoity toity” crowd as he describes them, Noel says, “No I am not because I think when they hear this song they too will remember what this time of year is supposed to mean and they themselves will let go and come join the fun and let the music take them away as it is meant to. My job as an entertainer is to make you the patron forget all of your worries, that includes how you look, how you dance, everything!”

Da Ma$tamind has certainly produced and performs this song with an energy that simply hypnotizes anyone looking on, alongside the lyrics written by Stephan “Kuttit” Abraham that embody all of the feeling that once overtook this twin island from January till Ash Wednesday.

From the response this well renowned producer has been receiving it seems as though he has singlehandedly started a revolution to bring back the Carnival we all know and love. Full of life, love of each other, and most importantly the freedom we all crave as soon as the clock strikes 12 on New Year’s Day.

“Madness” is rolling with a momentum and vibe that no one with ears and a true love for this season can ignore. Thanks to Da Ma$tamind, 2010 is clearly the year in which all Soca and Carnival babies get back exactly what they want!

To listen click here: “Madness” or