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Calypso music began in Trinidad and Tobago in the early 20th century. The beat goes back to West African Kaiso and the arrival of French planters and their slaves from the French Antilles in the 1600s. Sub styles of Calypso include:

  • Benna: a calypso-like genre, characterized by scandalous gossip and a call-and-response format.
  • Mentois: a style of Jamaican folk music that predates and has influenced ska and reggae music.
  • Spouge is a fusion style of Jamaican Ska with Trinidadian calypso. Spouge instrumentation consists of cowbell, bass guitar, trap set and various other percussion instruments. Currently this includes saxophone, trombone and trumpets.
  • Cadence-lypso: With calypso and cadence in the band's repertoire the term cadence-lypso was born. In the 1970's Cadence-lypso or kadans became popular in the kwéyòl speaking Caribbean. During that time, the music developed and evolved, reaching a zenith in the period from 1978 to 1980's, and then took a downturn.

Gordon Henderson, founder of the famous musical group Exile One is one who coined the term Cadence-lypso. Calypso later evolved into Soca.

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