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n. pl. ca·lyp·sos
A terrestrial orchid (Calypso bulbosa) native to northern temperate regions, having a rose-pink flower with an inflated pouchlike lip usually marked with white, purple, and yellow.

[Probably Latin Calypsō, Calypso; see Calypso1.]

Ca·lyp·so 1

n. Greek Mythology
A sea nymph who delayed Odysseus on her island, Ogygia, for seven years.

[Latin Calypsō, from Greek Kalupsō, from kaluptein, to conceal; see kel- in Indo-European roots.]

Ca·lyp·so 2

or ca·lyp·so (kə-lĭp′sō)
n. pl. Ca·lyp·sos or ca·lyp·sos also Ca·lyp·soes or ca·lyp·soes
A type of music that originated in the West Indies, notably in Trinidad, and is characterized by improvised lyrics on topical or broadly humorous subjects.

[Probably alteration (influenced by Calypso, in reference to the nymph's island home) of Caribbean English kaliso, variant of kariso, variant of kaiso, bravo (shout of approval for a Calypsonian's performance), Calypso music, from ka iso!, shout of encouragement with which West Indian slaves accompanied singers singing satirical songs about plantation owners and overseers, from Efik ka isu, go on (imperative form) (from ka, go, advance + isu, face, front, forward), and its Ibibio equivalent kaa iso.]

Ca·lyp·so′ni·an (kə-lĭp-sō′nē-ən, kăl′ĭp-) n.


(Music, other) a performer or writer of calypsos
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References in periodicals archive ?
This year, the African & African Diaspora Studies Program's Distinguished Africana Scholars Lecture hosts two prominent speakers: Rawle Gibbons, founding Director of the Centre for Creative and Festival Arts at the University of the West Indies (UWI), and Willard Harris, aka Lord Relator, a seasoned Trinidad and Tobago calypsonian noted for imitation and his ability to sing extemporaneously - “the art of composing impromptu lyrics about any subject, at any time, without previous thought or study.
Kangkala, a calypsonian, is the narrator of Earl Lovelace's Caribbean saga.
I remember that growing up in Trinidad the calypsonian, like the blues singer, was regarded by my parents and grandparents as devil music.
The loud beat, the music of the calypsonian, and the vigorous dancing--all accompanied by heavy drinking and smoking--go on for hours and induce an intense state of ecstasy and mirth among participants, who become so carried away by the spirit of the occasion that they lose track of the prescribed route and wander around the narrow streets until well into the night.
Amy carried on, restless as ever, moving from one place to the other, forming women's organizations here, political organizations there, and various civic organizations everywhere it seemed, sometimes with Sam Manning, her longtime lover and an outstanding calypsonian, but always in need of money, always trying to develop schemes for making money, none of which did well.
It was the Runners who had saved her by tapping into her operating language, her argot, creole, and Nannysong, a fusion of computer language and protocols in Eleggua, Marryshow, and Calypsonian tongue, a song so complex it had been mistaken for "fuzzy logic" garble (50-52).
Typical of this was Sparrow's injunction in 1959 to those who opposed Williams "to leave the damn doctor" and in which the calypsonian states unequivocally that "soon in the West Indies /is please Mister Nigger please.
The oxtails (Barbadian style) are prepared with a drink in your hand, "the Chinese incense burning sweet in your apartment," and "a hot calypso by the Trinidadian calypsonian Crazy" playing in the background, but not too loud, because you don't want your neighbours to call the police.
Calypsonian Lord Melody was one of Tiger Bay's most famous and colourful characters.
Even a calypso by the calypsonian Chalkdust, a schoolteacher, in 1971, "An Answer to Black Power" stressed solving the Black Man's problems.
The calypsonian, as a practitioner of the style is called, counted among his most fervent fans such high-profile figures as England's Princess Margaret and U.
They have it to say how even the calypsonian Mama Choonks hear what happen, and she writing a rapso about it, and boasting that she going to come in Road March Queen again this year, when she bust some style 'pon the crowd with she new tune "Workee in the Parlor.