Photos Courtesy Réginald Policard.
Historical background provided by Reginald Policard to Manny Ardouin, Francois Adrien & Frankie Morone.
Narration Frankie Morone, Edited by François Adrien & Manny Ardouin. Album released in Feb 2009.
In the mid 70's a band by the name " Bueno Sunshine" played every Friday night at the "Ibo- Lele Shango Lounge". The musicians were Jean- Jean Laraque, Robert Martino, Alix Corvington and Montreuil. The very talented keyboardist Reginald Policard, after completion of his studies in New York City returned to Haiti on July 1976. The Shango Lounge was one his favorite place to relax and, he was occasionally asked to play the piano with the band. The attendance at Shango was more than desirable on those Fridays.
As the year was ending and the holidays around the corner, Jean-Jean Laraque learned over the radio that another band was given the gig to play at the hotel Ibo Lele New Year's Eve party. He called Reginald Policard and both were extremely disappointed. After a long conversation, the idea came to form another band. Jean-Jean Laraque's brother (Toto) was contacted, and he agreed to be part of the project. Other musicians contacted were: Kiki Coupet (vocals) and Alix Corvington(Bass). By December 28, 1976, the Caribbean Quintet (name chosen by Reginald) was officially formed.
A few of months later, (Feb 1977) "Caribbean Quintet" began to play at the famous "Dind a Ling" club. It didn't take long for success to come their way. Unfortunately a few weeks later, Toto Laraque (guitarist) became ill and Boulot Valcourt was called to temporarily replace him. Around the same time, Kiki Coupet decided to emigrate to the US and Yves Jeudi (Alias Tarzan) became the new lead singer. The "Caribbean Quintet" was then composed of 1-Réginald Policard, 2-Jean Jean Laraque, 3-Yves Jeudi(Tarzan), 4- Toto Laraque who came back and began to play again, and 5- Alix Corvington. (Bass) . A few months later, the quintet decided to record a few songs and Maxime Castera joined them as a special guest at the conga for that first recording. Many songs were recorded but one of them "Tripotage" a beautiful tune composed by Reginald himself, was played several times at Lionel Benjamin's show on Radio Metropole one of the leading radio station in Port -au - Prince and became a hit.
Things were moving very well for the "Caribbean Quintet". Gaguy Depestre a great musician decided to return to Haiti.On July 3rd, 1977, he went to "Ding a Ling night club" for an evening of relaxation. Of course the famous "Quintet" was performing there as usual. Gaguy was deeply impressed by a song called "Dominique" composed by Réginald for his fiance. He loved it so much, that he decided to get his flute and requested that they play it again so he can accompany them. It was such a beautiful interpretation that at the end of that evening, Gaguy Depestre was invited to join the group. The "Quintet" then became "Sextet".
1- Reginald Policard - Maestro, Keyboard.
2 - Philippe Laraque(Toto) - Guitar
3- Jean-Jean Laraque - Drums
4- Alix Corvington - Bass
5- Yves Jeudi (alias Tarzan) - Lead Singer
6- Gaguy Depestre - Tenor Sax & Flute
The great "Caribbean Sextet" no longer formally exists, but the fans are very proud of that group and, to this day enjoy listening theirs recordings and some hits such as " Dominique"- " La chatte de Fifi" -" La person" just to name a few. Toto Laraque whenever he plays his guitar and the microphone at the same time he is simply " funny ". He is not a singer so to speak but " Caribbean Sextet" goes with his voice. His lyrics flow vividly and natural. If you do not believe me listen to "la revanche de Jolibois". One cannot listen to that song or " Madougou" and not have a hearty smile on your face when he " sings".
"CARIBBEAN SEXTET " WAS IN A CLASS BY ITSELF.
We are inviting you to take a look at some very rare and interesting pictures courtesy of the Maestro Réginald Policard. As usual your comments are greatly appreciated. Please do not hesitate to post one.