Allan Clelland Goddard, this years Calypso Pioneers
monarch shares a tender moment with his mother and song-writer
Deborah Clelland. Photo: Jennifer Watson
UST nine years old and with a double title of Calypso Pioneers
monarch already under his belt, Allan Clelland-Goddard is
considered as being old beyond his years.
Allan who attends the St Xaviers Private School received
the judges nod at the competition which was staged
at the Jean Pierre Complex with a heart-wrenching song entitled,
The social commentary which was penned by his mother Deborah
Clelland, called on both the United Nations and the government
of the day to step up and help address the issue of street
Speaking boldly during an interview at the Guardian, the
little lad who spoke with much confidence said that the
situation affected him so much that he wanted to send a
strong message to the powers that be.
idea of the song came from my mother who was very interested
in helping street children in this country, said Allan
during an interview on March 13.
song is a very positive one and I believe that once the
message goes around people would realise that not only internationally
there is a problem with street children, but in this country
as well and we must all do our part to help them.
think about what they (children) have to go through daily
on the streets, going through the left overs in the rubbish
bins and not being able to enjoy a good breakfast, lunch,
dinner or even have clean clothes on their back and a shelter
over their heads when the rain falls, he said with
a straight face.
His last years offering at the competition, The World
We Live In, also a social commentary written by his mother,
spoke of the some of the social ills which were plaguing
the society and the world as a whole, such as crime, terrorism,
rape and murders.
Both songs are now complied on a CD with music done by Ken
Brooker Hutchinson and recorded at KBH recording
studio in St Joseph.
A burning issue
Reminiscing on his performance at the competition, Allan
who began singing at age six, said that he was very confident
that he was going to do his best.
Accompanied on stage by his five-year-old twin sisters Kiona
and Genevieve, Allan also got support from his classmates
who assisted him with props.
want to one day get the opportunity to perform the song
before Kofi Annan, so that he could report to the other
UN secretaries that this issue is very important and that
something has to be done about it, the St Augustine
Allan added that when he heard his name being called as
the winner, he felt a burning sensation run through his
was a great experience, he said with a smile.
you sing and you know that you have done your best, you
just wait to see what the judges think of it, you have to
if you make a mistake and feel that you did not do your
best, you have to sing with faith still, he advised.
Eagerly, Allan mentioned that during his findings, he learnt
that approximately 150 million children world-wide were
living on the streets.
Some of the greatest numbers, he noted, came from Brazil.
Even his facial expressions could win the heart of anyone
who is fortunate to come in contact with him.
Allan, who loves to listen to classic music and pop, was
acclaimed as a prodigy on the national instrument.
year I visited England where I represented my school at
the Royal College of Music Childrens camp during the
summer holidays, he said.
The standard Four student who is expected to sit the SEA
examination next year also enjoys playing the drums and
Apart from his love for the stage, the self-confessed A
student said that his favourite subjects includes music,
math, physical education and social studies.
Heart of love
His mother, Clelland who felt passionate about street children
said that she was moved to pen the song.
The song, which took her a year to complete, came to her
while driving through Port-of-Spain.
did not know that I had it in me to write, she said,
with a burst of laughter.
I wrote the first song for him last year, I knew that I
could do it again.
am very passionate about children on the whole and when
I see them on television or on the streets my heart goes
out, it touches me very deeply, she said her tone
So much so, she said that she desires to have the song used
as a catalyst to heighten the awareness among UN members
about the burning issue of street children.
also feels very passionate about the issue and the fact
that there are so many children world-wide who are forced
to call the cold streets their home, she said.
child in T&T or anywhere else in the world should have
to be living on the streets.
have rights too and that is one of the verses in the song,
So whats next for the diminutive singer?
could see myself singing next to David Rudder at one of
is a very serious and positive singer, he said, his
face lighting up.
His mother shook her head in agreement.
could actually hear them both singing with a very big choir
too, she said with a chuckle.
As for mentors in the music industry, Allan likes Shurwayne
Winchester and Machel Montano HD.
Glancing across lovingly at her son, Clelland described
him as a true performer.
still cannot believe it, but whenever he performs I cry.
is really doing me proud, many are called but few are chosen