Soca in Space: Machel Montano’s “Happiest Man Alive” Video

Words by Marcha M. Johnson—

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“Happiest Man Alive” was Machel Montano’s first release for the 2014 Trinidad Carnival Season and, now, the reigning Soca Monarch and his frequent visual collaborator Damien Marcano (director of the feature film God Loves the Fighter) have blessed us with visuals for the fan favorite. But this isn’t your conventional Carnival music video, with throngs of people and monster sound systems pervading the streets of Port of Spain. It’s actually almost the complete opposite.

Shots alternate between showing Machel in a vast desert land and his very own Garden of Eden, all while donning a spacesuit. The result is a montage of powerful and colorfully enriching frames that are nothing short of aesthetically pleasing. More significantly, the “H.M.A.” music video marks the debut of Machel’s newly recruited HD dance team to the world. The women are beautifully adorned in breathtaking costumes, treating us to a skillful and sultry performance.

There may be no big trucks or throngs of masqueraders, but one thing’s for certain; Marcano and Montano have captured the essence of what awaits us on March 3rd and 4th: liberation and pure bliss. For more on Machel’s Carnival 2014 gamplan, see our story on his “Ministry of Road” here.

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