Legendary calypsonian/composer, Alston ‘Becket’ Cyrus, has fostered an illustrious 30-year career with 21 albums and numerous award-winning singles to his credit. Through his achievements and distinguished musicianship Becket has earned his title as the 'ABC' of calypso/soca.
Born in St. Vincent, Becket's first love was the steel pan. As a teenager, he realised that he also had a gift for singing and he quickly became popular as a calypsonian. In 1972, while a member of the U.S. Army, Becket decided that he wanted to pursue a singing career and as a result he performed in the successful U.S. Soldier's Tour-Hawaii 1972-1974. His professional career began in 1975.
In 1977, Becket struck gold with his popular hit “Coming High” and followed with equally successful singles like “Wine Down Kingstown” (1978), “Cocoa” (1980), “Calypso Noel” (1982), “Ooh La La” (1983), “Teaser” (1990) and “Small Pin” (1999). In 1991, he received the Record of the Year and Best Party Tune awards at the first ever Caribbean Music Awards held at the Apollo Theatre in New York. He was honoured three times by the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines and earned an award from the Trinidad and Tobago Association of Houston for Teaser.
In 1994 “Ella Me Vacila” (the Spanish version of “Teaser”) earned him a BMI Latin Award and a Billboard/Univision Award for the Salsa/Tropical Song of the Year. Cover versions of this song have been done in several other languages. During Trinidad's Carnival 2000, smash hits “Small Pin” and “Doh Eat And Lie Down” swept the Caribbean airwaves. In addition to party tunes Becket creatively penned several songs related to world events, Caribbean politics and carnival such as “Love Is The Answer” (remade in 2001 featuring post 911 lyrics), “Carnival History” (earning him the Calypso King of St. Vincent & the Grenadines in 1975), “Legalize The Grass”, “Human Rights”, “I Am An African”, “Bring Back Moses Law” and “Don’t Look Down On Ah Man”.
As a veteran calypsonian Becket has performed throughout the Caribbean, Canada, Spain, England, Columbia and the United States all manner of venues including college tours and festivals. In 2000 he made history becoming the first Caribbean artist invited to perform at the U.S. Open tennis tournament and was listed as one of the 17 Outstanding Caribbean Personalities of the 20th Century. In 2001 the Government of St. Vincent & the Grenadines appointed him as their Goodwill Ambassador.
His CD Pussy Cat Party, includes a mixture of strong lyrics, sweet melodies and uplifting Caribbean rhythms. This album has been added to iTunes music store, making Becket one of the first soca artists to be featured on Apple’s iPod and the iTunes music jukebox software.
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18 Nov, 2019
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