The Caribbean region lost one of its most beloved daughters of music and culture in Francine Edwards, better known as Singing Francine.
While born in Barbados on February 13th, 1943, Edwards would move to Trinidad & Tobago at a young age and become a pioneering force in music, particularly in the beloved genres of calypso and parang. She would also become well known for how she addressed social issues through her music, and over the course of her career, become a shining example of how the linkages run deep throughout our Caribbean family.
With a powerful voice, Edwards helped define the early calypso scene, and would go on to win the National Calypso Queen competition in Trinidad & Tobago in 1972, 1973, 1981 and 1983.
It is no stretch for me to say that Singing Francine’s music is timeless, as I know all Barbadians will be familiar with her music, with the sounds of “Parang Parang” echoing throughout communities across the island during the Christmas period. I am certain her contributions to these genres will never be forgotten.
In addition to her many accomplishments in Trinidad and Tobago, Francine was also proud of her Barbadian heritage and frequently spoke about her love for her homeland.
On behalf of our Government, and all people of Barbados, I send thoughts and condolences to her family, loved ones, and all those who knew and admired her throughout the region.
Singing Francine will be deeply missed, but also deeply remembered for her many accomplishments and for the joy she brought to so many people through her music and social commentary. May her spirit rest in peace.