Lil Nick. You may want to remember the name, as this versatile young man could be the next dominant force in the calypso arena.
Nikile ‘Lil Nick’ Deterville is the Junior Calypso King for 2013 and 2014 in the secondary school division. He is a 15-year-old form 3 student of the Corinth Secondary School, and his dad says that Lil Nick is all about calypso, soca and performing.
From whining for the family until his waist hurt, to escaping into the streets to jump carnival, Lil Nick has displayed a love for the art form and music since he was an even littler boy.
After capturing this year’s monarch with the song ‘Granny’s Wisdom,’ Nick shared the experience of his consecutive triumphs.
What was the preparation for this year’s event like for you?
LN: Well, thanks to God, my father, my managing team, my teacher Miss Maraj and veteran calypsonian Lady Leen, it worked out smoothly and everything panned out the way I wanted it to.
How did you take the news of the cancellation of the event by the Ministry?
LN: I was very disappointed, down and out because I really wanted to defend my crown and defend it well too. But I was happy it was brought back by the Calypso Association.
At what age did you begin performing and what made you fall in love with the stage?
LN: I started performing when I was about six years but not competitively. My father introduced me to it, [from] working in entertainment at the hotel; he used to give me opportunities to sing. Islah Man also took me to places to get a feel of performing. My first competition was in 2009 at the RC Boys’ Jam, where I placed second in soca and third in calypso. In 2010 and 2011 I placed second in calypso.
How different was the experience of being a first time participant last year and being a defending champion this year?
LN: Last year I had a little bit of pressure because Embert Ricardo won for Corinth in 2012 and he wasn’t convinced that I could defend the title for the school. So I had to prove him wrong and make the school proud by bringing the crown back to Corinth. And when I accomplished that I was obviously happy.
This year was special because I beat my primary school rival at RC Jam, Stinger, who came in second. He was always ‘stinging’ me at RC Jam so that made it extra special for me. Also the challenge of defending my monarchy came with its pressure so I’m happy overall.
Would you say that the crowd was a deciding factor in you capturing the crown this year?
LN: I agree that the crowd played a big role in me defending my crown because at the school I sang the song once and the students just loved it.
On the day, they sang the chorus along with me and I was surprised that students from the other schools also got into the ‘granny say’ line.
So it was special to me and I was like a choir conductor during my performance.
What was it like for you on the day of the competition?
LN: I was very nervous. For me it’s just trying to feel the music, knowing the song, and as I perform I feel better.
Explain the feeling of winning the title for the second time.
LN: When the MCs called Stinger, I was like wow! Because he performed before me and I thought to myself, ‘I have to go hard’. So when they called him for second place, the tears ran down my cheek because I finally ‘stung’ him.
Tell us about your songs for Carnival 2014.
LN: I have two soca tracks out, groovy and power, and I’m coming out from the Hitty Productions camp. The groovy is entitled ‘So Healthy,’ being healthy for the Carnival; you don’t need no rum for the carnival and to have fun. My power song is ‘Mad Injection.’ I will be performing for Kiddies Carnival as a guest appearance.
We also want to record the song ‘Granny Wisdom’ and make a video for it because it has a strong message. I’m just hoping that some business can come along and support it and really spread the message of the benefits of having a good grandmother.
What are your endeavors in terms of education and your preferred career?
LN: I would like to go into the hospitality and hotel sector because I have a love for entertaining. So I will be doing the business related subjects and hopefully I could pursue 9 subjects for CXC. I was thinking of being a policeman because my friends say that I act like one.
I want to win every title there is in calypso and soca. To tell you the truth I’m greedy so I want everything!
Who would you like to credit for your successes so far?
LN: I want thank my RC Boys teachers for grooming me into calypso, Cecil Charles for exposing me to the Take Over Tent, my arranger Dyson Imbert, my writer in Trinidad, Claudius Francis and the Wall Street Crew.