Ginou Oriol. In Memoriam.

I was introduced to Ginou in Hollywood, Florida by my dear friend RC des Ruisseaux. She was the first famous Haitian musician ever to call me “Maestro.” I was shocked. We started talking and she was among the few though so talented who did not buy the crap that is going on right now either among those who believe that they are the best musicians around or about the so called jazz movement itself. She knew very well who was excellent, good or not so good just like I know.

It is 2:30 in the morning and I just read this sad news. Our mortality does not teach many of us almost nothing for many among us do not give a damn about their own life so they can care less about others’. Or simply many of us just care so much about their own life that they can put themselves at the center of the world with an empty pride and just for self-gratification.

Ginou Oriol was much bigger than many of us might think. This nasty and filthy environment of the Haitian music world has been preventing many, many great talents with humility and integrity from blossoming among us the way it should have been. Ginou Oriol, with so much talent, could not make a living as one of the greatest vocalists we ever had and that’s really, really, really sad.

One must understand why before I also leave this world behind to pursue my journey above I will do everything that is morally compatible with my faith in order to contribute to a better environment in the Haitian Arts World. I can assure you that I won’t fail. Take it from me. I know that it is a major struggle and achieving this goal is against all odds.

This viral animosity and obvious hypocrisy against artists and musicians who are true to themselves coming from other musicians and some Haitian audiences because of this ferocious tribal mentality and repugnant prejudices, which the colons themselves used to inflict to our ancestors, should not be dignified in any civilized society. But it prevails with an unseen and unbelievable acceptance in our society by snob subjects with only apparent tastes for the foreign just to make an extremely superficial class distinction.

From Ti Coca to Barikad Crew to Herbie Widmaer, I’ll go straight to Ti Coca and Barikad Crew. They convey the soul of my people. Herbie Widmaer projects only the taste of a social class. With Orchestre El Saeh, he was part of a movement, a temporary one that did not survive only for one reason—c’était la mode du temps. With the resources held by the bourgeoisie, had it been a true movement, it would have not only survived, but also it would have reached the masses. It would not have been for “la crème.”

One man alone cannot stand among the midst of such a disgusting chaos. But what is the life of a man without a cause? As I have said many times, I did not embrace music as a career in order to be famous, I did it for a cause. Then, today those who have been putting so much dirt on my good name must understand why I’m standing still and standing strong.

Ginou Oriol did not receive an award among us. That should and could have been done while she was alive. What saddens me the most is the fact that she did not have the chance to release her project which she wanted to do so badly. I’m pretty sure that on her last breath, that might have been her greatest regret.

You know, Ginou, how much many shared your pain. But, those who really know you will always remember you for who you really are—a star among the Gods.

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