St. John’s Antigua- Veteran musician Clarence ‘Oungku’ Edwards has shelved his three-week-old controversial song “Patriotic” and released “my own anthem,” a number the singer is hoping will be more readily embraced by the general public.
The “Patriotic” song, a Soca adaptation of the national anthem, was frowned upon by critics and the Intellectual Property Rights Division said it would investigate whether the proper permission was obtained to compose it.
Edwards told OBSERVER Media however that his action is “not at all” in response to threats on an investigation.
“This new release is about the ongoing controversy and not any aspect of it,” he said.
Last week, the composer said his song was meant to get patriots to learn the national anthem in a fun manner. Oungku admits that he didn’t anticipate the song would encourage dancing while original was being played. However, he thinks the song was in fact able to get more Antiguans & Barbudans familiar with the lyrics.
Edwards, who heads the Red Hot Flames band, said another motivation for his new release was to divert the public’s attention from the earlier single which he thought had been given a “political twist.”
The band is working on a new album to be released in June and Oungku said “Patriotic” won’t find a place on the album.
When asked whether he had given local DJs instructions to repeal the song, Edwards said he had no control over the song being played on local radio stations.
“I can only pull back from my end. It’s up to the radio stations who have a copy,” he said, adding that he will no focus his attention on his newest release.
Edwards told OBSERVER Media that he did not receive permission from the Office of the Prime Minister to use the lyrics of the national anthem in his tune.
At least one local attorney has said that there is nothing illegal about the adaptation of the song.
“You can sing the national anthem upside down. Last before first verse or in Chinese if you want to,” Attorney Dr David Dorsette said.