Tropical Fusion Mas Band I knew very little about. So I did my usual and spoke to the band leader Dwayne Charles. This is the second year for this band on the road for Notting Hill Carnival. Last year he estimated the band consisted 350 people. Charles wants to double the amount this year with at least 150 in costumes and maybe the rest in t-shirt.
Charles also organizes Tropical Fest which organises trips to Grenada and has been doing that for the past four years. His market includes those from the US, Canada and of course the UK.
Tropical Fusion Mas Band is based in West London. The age range for the band last year was between 10-30 I’m told with a mix of West Indians and Africans as masqueraders. Soca is played mostly on the road with ten minute intermissions which is a mixture of everything else.
The band launch was held at the upper level of the pub Paradise Café. The area was medium sized with a stage. The staff of Tropical Fusion were helpful and friendly and very visible with their t-shirts. Brands of LiveLoveSoca, Carnival Slayers, Island Carnival Queens, Carni Crazi were present to see the first viewing of the costumes. The DJ Diamond Jay was not bad I felt as he played some soca tunes I hadn’t heard in a hot minute.
The venue was packed by the time the costumes were to come out (was told the venue was sold out) and the costume reveal was only about 15 minutes late which is great for a band launch!
First up was the Sunday Wear which was primarily leotards with skeleton prints or the branding and masks.
Ring Mistress was designed by first time designer of costumes Corinne White. She is also a more experienced designer of bespoke bags.
Rhythmic wonders by Andrea Cyrus. The blue colour popped!
Rougue Beaute by Chloe. Red and bling? Good choice.
Kannari by Kane. I like that it is colourful with bling!
I have a feeling the Rogue Beaute frontline will be a popular choice. Red and bling? Can’t go wrong. But I personally leaned more towards Kane’s VIP Kannari. It’s colouful and I like the broken wing effect, like an angel fallen from grace or an angel that had had a little too much fun! Might be a bit difficult to navigate round Notting Hill, but hey it’s about owning the road and making them give you room as you show off your costume!
All in all, not a bad launch; the crowd was appreciative and everything from the outside looked liked it went to plan. Let’s see if Mr Charles can double his numbers this year shall we?
For more information on Tropical Fusion Mas, please visit Tropical Fusion Mas at Tropicalfusionmas.com and on Instagram, Snap Chat, Facebook. All images with this article was taken by Ilovecarnivall.