Sunday, December 22, 2013

The Music World of Haiti is Mourning.

By : Hervé Gilbert herve.gilbert@gmail.com
French Version
Hervé Casséus
Hervé Casseus, former pianist and keyboardist of the greatest Haitian Tropicana Orchestra, has died.  This is a great loss in the music world of Haiti and for thousands of Tropicana’s fans. Initial findings indicated that Herve Casseus passed away on December 16, 2013 in New York from cardiovascular complications.
Hervé Casséus was part of the first generation of the orchestra Tropicana of Haiti, which was founded on August 15, 1963.  For a brief moment, let's retrace the path of this Haitian keyboardist who has explored all aspects of this instrument to enhance his talents. After the arrival of the Hammond organ in churches during the 70’s, until the wave of appearances of electric pianos, electronic synthetizers, Korg , Roland , Yamaha, Casio then into the 80’s...Herve, was part of the pioneering group of musicians of Haiti, who brought creative nuances and percussive to these instruments in the Haitian Bands.

After almost 4 decades in the band, this gifted musician, composer, pianist, organist and keyboardist, was definitely the centerpiece of the orchestra where he epitomized the style of “compa roussi,” characterized by his transcendence stroll on the piano. Featuring in musical pieces such as Ti Jocelyne , Limonade , Rande -vou Chanpet , Yolande , Angelique, "Labadie se yon paradi" and many others, Herve Casseus was a musician who scored big hits in Tropicana .

Cinna O Charles (Ti Blan) Maestro
Solidified with unparalleled skills, his original musical style made this instrument very popular and influenced popular music. He was also a musician with great harmonic and melodic touches through different musical compositions by this great orchestra of Haiti.

Who doesn’t remember the “bal champêtre” (country ball), by the Tropicana either at Camp Perin , Limonade , or on December 31st at Djumbala Night Club? It was as if we had ants in the legs, the atmosphere was always relaxing, champagne bottles flowed freely, Hervé whirling his fingers on the keyboard luring the dancers in a whirlwind mode and even to seduce a saint. I experienced all those beautiful moments during the golden era; before the insecurity that decreased the nightlife in our country. The Tropicana d'Haiti made millions happy for more than 50 years.

An  exceptional soloist with great mastery , he was the one that took you to seventh heaven with his instrument. Once the mambo of the saxophones ended, he would go for a stroll with allegoric variations on the keyboard. His notable and various  styles are marked by the musical pieces such as: Ti Jocelyne , Limonade , Superstition , Ti Dadie , Doux Tropic , Pran Pasyans , Ti Zo, "Gason total", "Madanm" etc.

To conclude , let's just say he was an improviser with a fertile imagination and great euphonious abilities. The master of the synthesizer, Herve, contributed significantly to the success of this band with his colorful stamp, exposing perfect cohesion with both hands.
Haiti Connexion Network and its members would like to take this moment to say goodbye to this revered musician while expressing sincere condolences to the family of the deceased, the orchestra Tropicana, the Club Tropic of Kissimmee Florida , especially Emmanuel Desamours , Harry Duval, Gaby Manigat, Garry Dorcin , Parnel Leconte, Yves Dubique , Fito  Marcelin and Henry Claude Richard ... etc...

Let’s discover Herve on the keyboard with Tropicana in the  90’s

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