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Michel Martelly

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Michel Martelly, better known as “Sweet Micky”, was born February 12, 1961 in Port-au-Prince, Haïti, He is a haitian performing and recording artist, composer, and musical sociopolitical activist.

Martelly currently serves as President of Haiti after winning the presidential election in 2011.

Martelly is more popularly and affectionately known as “Sweet Micky,” a moniker sometimes used interchangeably to refer to himself as well as his band (with original members, guitar player Alex Tropnas and bass player Welton Desire).

Michel Martelly has been heralded as a pioneer of a unique brand of kompas music, a style of Haitian dance music sung in Haitian Creole language. Originally, compas was a fusion of Afrolatin jazz and African/Haitian folkoric rhythms, and was traditionally played by large bands composed of numerous group members and instrument sections. Martelly, a keyboardist and the self-proclaimed “bad boy” President of Compas, popularized a nouvelle generation, or “new generation” style, of smaller bands with few members that relied predominantly on synthesizers and electronic instruments to reproduce a fuller sound. Martelly’s and Sweet Micky’s live performances and recordings are sometimes laced with obscenities and humorous sociopolitical commentary by Martelly. Outlandish and outspoken, Martelly has been known to drink publicly while performing in wigs, costumes, diapers, and Scottish kilts, and occasionally removed his own attire while performing. While arguably the most recognized and applauded musician and public personality in Haiti, Martelly’s performance style has sometimes ignited controversy throughout the Haitian diaspora.

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