By Christine Jean-Pierre
According to some circulating rumors around the Internet, legendary lead singer and solo artist Alan Cave will be leaving the band Zin because of un-resolving issues surrounding money and creativity. There were also other reports of Alan Cave leaving the group to further his solo career, which seemed odd to some fans because Cave has already carried a successful solo career while still maintaining his spot as the lead singer of Zin.
According to haitinetradio.com, the rumors of Alan Cave leaving Zin began when a newly leaked Zin track called mwen jwen bout mwen sung by newly added male singer, Polo. The song quickly caused uproar among loyal Zin fans, stating that the song sounds more like a Carimi song than a Zin song, and that song connects with more of a younger generation of Kompa fans instead of the more traditional Kompa love style we are used to hearing from Zin. Another Zin leaked song Resesyon sung by Polo left fans puzzled, wondering if Alan Cave left the group for good to create another band rumored to be titled The cave experience.
Well, according to Kompa music news website Kompamagazine.com, the rumors about Alan Cave leaving Zin are simply not true. In fact, Cave has reportedly several newly revamped tracks for the upcoming Zin album with all lead vocals sung by him, and that the tracks leaked were simply a test to see how the fans would gravitate to the new male singer added to the band. Cave states that he has no interest in leaving Zin next year, and that Zin has already booked overseas gigs in New Caledonia and Belgium for the next year in hopes to boost the popularity of the band in an international level.
Kompa: Strong in New Caledonia and beyond
Speaking of New Caledonia, young Kompa/Zouk artist, Kaalysta has become the new sensation of that French Polynesian Island with a double-header: Tout De Moi and Abandonné. Only 17 years old, Kaalysta is taking the Kompa world by storm, drawing huge crowds in Paris and in the other French overseas Departments.
Kompa has become the music of choice for younger generation of New Caledonians ever since Haiti’s legendary band T-Vice performed there in 2005. Months later, T-Vice was going to be followed by another famed group, Carimi. Kompa has never been so embraced by the world audience since this sweet-melodious music genre was created by pioneer musician Nemours Jean-Baptiste back in 1955. However, a danger looms for this newfound fame of this Haitian creation. While it is undeniably Kompa being played—so sweet and so tender—many of these countries tend to claim the music genre as their own and even give it other names. For instance, in Cape Verde, Kompa is called Kezomba. While Kouk producers are using Kompa to enrich themselves, they refuse to give Kompa its recognition on their record labels.
Critics believe part of this lies with a lack of a solid structure from the Haitian music industry and a lack of cohesiveness on the part of Haitian music producers, focusing more on making money off more vulnerable Haitian artists rather than playing the role of gatekeepers of Kompa’s authenticity. This brings a bitter/sweet feeling in the hearts of many Kompa fans from Haiti as well as from the Haitian Diaspora. Kompa is finally braking through on the world stage, but Haiti may be far from getting the recognition.
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