You've probably already heard the exciting calypso music of "King Eric and the Knights" in this album. Most covers tell you of the contents but behind each record is a story, usually known only to those intimate with its making...of how it was produced...of why and who...of what is involved. We too have our tale. We thought you might like to hear it. We didn't press our album, full of hopes and dreams and misty eyes. This record was produced because we were flooded with requests for the music of "The Knights" here at the BA MA.
"We" are Bob Twist and Stan Raney...two young Americans, who, like yourselves, have been just people who worked and enjoyed travelling...a cotton grower and a civil engineer, transplanted from the Mississippi to the beautiful Bahamas.
A couple of years ago we thought there probably was a place, someplace, somewhere, that offered a little more opportunity, a little better way of life...an escape from running up escalators, a more pleasant climate. We searched the Western Hemisphere and here in the turquoise waters, the white beaches, the palm-studded paradise of the Bahama Islands, we found our cup of tea. We decided to build a supper club in the sparkle of the emerald jewels, Nassau...but not just an ordinary supper club. In our travelling we, probably like yourself, appreciated and found all too rarely, places that had atmosphere, good service, good food and unique, intriguing things. We wanted our place to have all of those things...all of the ideas we had exchanged while asking ourselves why didn't they do this or that. We wanted to combine the atmosphere and romance of these tropical islands with the interesting British colonial influences and way of life, creating a supper club so unique, so enchanting, that we, as tourists, would be just simply enthralled.
Therein is the whole idea of the BA MA...designed, built, and continuously operated to make every moment of your visit sheer leisure. When we go into a place, we like to be treated as a guest, and by golly that is what we insist on at the BA MA. You are the guest here, and our entire staff is on hand for one thing only, to serve you and to please you ... This is a must!
We wove palm fronds, straw mats, coconut trees, shells, thatch, sails, surfboards and bamboo into an intriguing cocktail lounge. Here the guests recline in leather chairs to sip delightedly on one of our original drinks and absorb the intriguing beat of "King" Eric and the Knights. Fresh tropical fruit juices are blended by our mixologists with delicious nectars, to be tantalizingly served in lengths of bamboo, pineapple shells, coconuts and conch shells. Fresh slices of coconut soaked in salted coconut milk are always before you...and at happy hour we set a tiny pot of charcoal on your table with barbeque ribs so that you may charcoal your own hors d'oeuvres.
Our dining rooms are as English as the Prime Roast Beef and Yorkshire pudding that is wheeled to your table in a copper cart and cut an inch thick. Oak paneling and beams, pewter, knights and armour complementing the old page costumes of our waiters to carry you back to the days of King Arthur when feasting and joviality were a way of life. Again, we have always appreciated excellent service and delicious food, so that is what you can expect in YE ROUNDE TABLE ROOM and KING ARTHUR'S ROOM.
Our slogan is "Serving the World's Best Food" and we do our darndest to live up to it, offering a mouth-watering variety...from sizzling charcoaled steaks, all kinds of fresh seafoods to a delightful selection of game birds, deliciously cooked in tropical fruits, wines and herbs and served in flaming cognacs and liquers. We also dislike stiff prices and you'll be pleasantly pleased with our modest tariffs.
Through another portal you'll find our WATERFALLS PATIO, high-walled and lush with tropical vegetation, where a cascading waterfall and pool provides a long-remembered background for those wanting to lunch in the relaxing breath of the trade winds...or for the evening diner, a romantic roof of tropical stars broken only by the gentle sway of coconut fronds and soft glow of candlelight.
It takes awhile for all of the things you try to do to become known, but now it seems we might even be getting a little bit famous. We can't help but feel proud that the BA MA and our original drinks have been talked about in "Esquire" magazine..."Escapade" and even "Vogue" mentioned us. Fashion magazines and airlines have found it an attractive background for advertising clothes and the Caribbean, and sometimes you can't see your bottle of beer for flood lights and photographers and models.
Yes, people like our place. Also very popular is our WINDSOR INNE surrounding us. We have completely remodeled the rooms into the most charming, atmospheric suites you ever saw...chucking in all kinds of services without charge. RECORD? RECORD??
Oh, the record...yes...we got so enthusiastic when we were writing this about our place (and so help me this is the truth) we forgot to weave that part into our story. Well, one of the things we're most proud of is our entertainment. We have, without doubt, the greatest calypso group in the Bahamas "'King' Eric and the Knights" is a fitting name. All are accomplished artists, versatile, and full of fun. We have had so many requests for their records that we decided to take the bull by the horns and produce one. Tom Jacobs, of Caribbean Folk Music, does a lot of recording of terrific island talent, and has combined some beautiful equipment with excellent technical skill herein to give you what we think is a darned good Hi Fidelity album.
Here are the chords of Eric Gibson on the guitar, Ronald Butler swinging from vocal to bongo drums, Frankie Adams singing his happy heart out, and Mickey Newbold on the bass. Here is the first album from all of us at the BA MA. We hope you enjoy it. We hope to see you soon.
King Eric and His Knights: BA MA Hit Parade, CARIB LP 2008 © 1960 Caribbean Folk Music, Ltd., Nassau, Bahamas
© 1996 Hip Wax