Everything Related to the Steelpan Instrument and Music
You recently asked for information from anyone who knew about the clash between Invaders and Tokyo. Here is my account. I am not exactly sure what year it was (there are differing opinions), but I was about seven years old and our friends who owned Chin's Bakery on Park Street told us we could come and watch mas' from there. I was standing on the pavement, my sister next to me and Tokyo was coming up Park Street, I presume, to turn down St. Vincent Street to go to Marine Square. I looked to my left and saw Invaders coming up Park Street, I imagine to go the same route, down St. Vincent Street. I looked back to Tokyo and saw their Captain, I presume, extend his hands to his sides as if to hold his guys back, because Invaders was in view. He said something to them to cool the situation. I turned to look back to Invaders again, but something caught my eye and I looked up. In those days, the American Naval Fleet used to make tops and some ships were in port that day. Sitting at the upstairs window of the Savoy Hotel on the corner of Park and St. Vincent Streets above the rum shop, was a white American sailor with an empty brown liquor bottle in his hand which he held out of the window. I looked at him and our eyes locked. He had a wicked smirk on his face and dropped the bottle. It smashed on the Park Street side. After that, you heard "fight, fight," and people started running helter skelter. The Chin's told us to come into the bakery. We were followed by a crowd of other people. They finally struggled and shut the bakery door. In those days, a two by four dropped into metal brackets closed the doors. Bedlam reigned outside and inside some men actually put their bodies against the door to further bolster it. A lady knocked on the door and said: "Let me in, Oh God, let me in," but the door remained shut. The police arrived eventually and things calmed down. This is what I remember of that incident. Neither Tokyo nor Invaders threw the first bottle. It was a white American sailor who started it when he dropped that empty brown liquor bottle.
My name is Valerie Clarke-Monrose and this is a true account to the best of my memory. I still see this incident in my mind to this day.
The bakery on the north side of Park Street was Mendonca’s bakery, famous for its hops bread. Chin’s bakery was on the south side of Park Street next to the drugstore on the corner of Park and St. Vincent Streets opposite Globe theatre. Chin’s bakery was painted white with dark blue trim.
Valerie: You should make an attempt to put a documentary together on that event. That scene where you describe looking up and locking eyes with the PERP and then the brown bottle falling and crashing on the street amid the spectators causing them to scamper in all directions is RIGHT OUT OF HOLLYWOOD.
I like that as an OPENING SCENE!!!
That is a very interesting thought, Claude.
Hope this story is taken up in the National Heritage Archives. The Truth must be told