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St. Kitts-born Richie Buntin Wins St. Thomas Calypso Monarch 2023


Hansill “Richie” Buntin.
Hansill “Richie” Buntin. Photo: USVI Festivals

On Sunday, Hansill “Richie” Buntin was crowned the 2023 St. Thomas Carnival Calypso Monarch, beating out Livingston “X-Man” Harris and 2018 champion Lucas “John Gotty” Evans, who placed second and third respectively. Richie, who was born in St. Kitts and Nevis, impressed the judges with his two performances, which included his songs “V.I. Unity” and “Vitamin C”.


“V.I. Unity” was inspired by Richie’s return to the US Virgin Islands in 2020, after living in the States for 40 years. The song is a call for unity among Virgin Islanders, regardless of their differences. “Vitamin C”, on the other hand, is a song about preserving Caribbean traditions, such as Carnival, and the importance of passing them on to future generations.


Richie’s win was celebrated by the St. Kitts and Nevis Carnival Commission, which congratulated him on his victory and praised his previous accomplishments as the 2013 Sugar Mas Calypso Monarch and the first Soca Monarch of the nation. “Huge congratulations to Hansill Richie Buntin, the newly crowned Calypso Monarch of the US Virgin Islands! We wish Richie a successful year of reign and eagerly await his return to the calypso arena in the Federation!,” the commission said in a statement.


In addition to his success in the Calypso arena, Richie is also an R&B singer who has traveled internationally and performed with a band in Istanbul and Japan. His talent and versatility have earned him numerous accolades over the years, including being the first runner-up in the 2023 St. Croix Festival.


Richie’s win at the St. Thomas Carnival Calypso Monarch is a testament to his talent and dedication to his craft. It is also a proud moment for St. Kitts and Nevis, as he continues to represent the twin-island nation on the international stage. We congratulate Richie on his victory and look forward to hearing more of his music in the future.

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