#Repost @tomasplayers with @repostapp
In the days of slavery whenever fire broke out upon an Estate, the slaves on the surrounding properties were immediately mustered and marched to the spot, horns and shells were blown to collect them and the gangs were followed by the drivers cracking their whips and curging with cires and blows to their work. After emancipation, the negroes began to represent this scene as a kind of commemoration of the change in their condition, and the procession of the “cannes brulees” used to take place on the night of the 1st of August , the date of their emancipation… After a time the day was changed and for many years past the Carnival days have been inagurated by the “Cannes Brulees”. In celebrating emancipation, it is very possible that enacting scenes reminiscent of slavery (where burnt cane covered a laborers body), and re-satirizing the white plantocracy that had formerly satirized laborers through portrayals of Negue Jadin contributed to the creation of this mas.
Jab Molassie are dressed in little more than a loincloth or shorts, and smeared with colored creams, dyes, and paints. The colors generally seen are black (oil, soot, and/or molasses), blue, and red.
The appearance of the Jab Molassie is accompanied by the beating of a crix tin, and, in some cases, the use of a scout whistle. Jab Molassie have been described as “bawling” vocally, but do not use any recognizable words or syntax.
Source Credit: Traditional Mas Archives