By TERRY JOSEPH
March 4, 2001
THE best of Dennis Franklyn Williams music
has been published in a single book by Alvin Daniells Major
& Minor Productions.
Williams, known as Merchant in the calypso world, penned scores
of songs although he recorded only four albums and two singles.
Most of his work was sold to other singers.
One such song, Ra Ti Ray, written in less than ten
minutes, was felt by Merchant to be a throwaway item, but became
a massive hit for calypsonian Designer. Several of his titles
also became catch phrases, like Taxi Talk, Pan
in Danger and One Super Power.
Respected by all for his ability to compose infectious music,
Merchants lifestyle did not enjoy equal attractiveness, but
was often overlooked in light of the body of work he produced.
Daniell, former chairman of the Copyright Organisation (Cott),
told the Daily Express he pondered the best way in which to
honour Merchant after his passing. It would be a great loss
to the music world if his songs were allowed to pass on with his
The lyrics, bass and melody lines of the songs are reproduced in
easy fake-book style, with relevant piano and guitar
chords identified above each bar. Included are super hits like
Caribbean Connection, Dr Soca, Let
No Man Judge, One Super Power, Pan in
Danger, Taxi Talk, Um Ba Yo and
Norman, is That You?
In the same style, Daniell has also produced Soca Hits 2001, a
book of 20 pan-kaiso songs released this year. The 2001 edition
is dedicated to the late calypso grandmaster, Kitchener.
Twenty songs, including the two that topped the Panorama final,
Pelham Goddards A Happy Song and
Preachers Rain Melody, played by the Neal &
Massy Trinidad All Stars are available, as is work by De Fosto,
Brian Bean Griffith, Mark Loquan, Blackstone, Oba,
Len Boogsie Sharpe, Ray Holman and GB.