(Trinidad Express) Former national calypso monarch and Road March champion Penguin died yesterday at his home following a stroke, which was only one in a succession of illnesses he suffered in recent years.
Penguin, born Sedley Joseph, was 70 years old and was one of the few calypsonians to have won both the Calypso Monarch and Road March titles.
In 1982 he claimed Road March honours with “A Deputy Essential” and in 1984 won the Calypso Monarch crown with “We Living In Jail” and “Sorf Man.”
Other memorable calypsoes from Penguin include “Betty Goatee”, “What Sweet In Goat Mout”, “The Slipper”, “Look De Devil Dey” and “Taxi Woman”.
A schoolteacher by profession, Joseph also served as president of the Trinbago Unified Calypsonians Organisation (TUCO) from the late 1990s up to recent years.
In 2005, he was presented with the Hummingbird Medal (Gold) in the annual national awards for his contribution to the development of the calypso art form.
TUCO public relations officer Karega Mandela told the Express that Penguin’s death, in the midst of the Carnival season, is a hard blow to the calypso fraternity because he was one of the stalwarts of the movement.
Mandela noted that regardless of whatever illness or hardship Penguin was facing he always had a broad smile and was ready to make anyone in his presence laugh.
Funeral arrangements will be announced at a later date.