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Behind the scenes: A Call to Arms - DUKE AL

Tickets & Travel | 24th April 2024

Cardiff launched Season Memberships for the 2024-25 campaign yesterday with a stirring video combining the old and the new.

The club have always opted to go big on membership campaigns, using the opportunity not only to renew their season tickets bit to celebrate our communities, unrivalled history and unique location. 

This year we enlisted the help of spoken word poet DUKE AL to write a piece, which encapsulated the club’s 2023-24 campaign and hopes for the season ahead, while celebrating our past and the iconic Arms Park. 

It’s safe to say Duke delivered the goods and he joined forces with Cardiff Arm Park Male Choir for a poignant and powerful performance captured and edited by the club’s production partners Whisper Cymru. 

We caught up with Duke about his love of rugby, the process of writing about the club he grew up supporting and his thoughts on the end product.

“Since the age of nine, I have always played rugby,” recalls Duke. 

“Growing up I played for Dinas Powys, as you will see from the video, and it has always been a big part of my life. It’s taught me a huge amount about teamwork, respect, confidence to put yourself out there, the ability to challenge yourself. 

“So it was such an honour to be asked to write a piece about the team I support and a club who were a huge inspiration to me growing up. I used to watch them a lot when I was younger and still follow closely, I was also part of Under-16s development squad back in the day!

“It was also an opportunity to combine my two passions in rugby and poetry, which was such a fun thing to do and meant so much to me.”

Following an internal meeting, Duke was identified as an ideal candidate to collaborate with the Cardiff Arms Park Male Voice Choir and a meeting was pencilled into the diary. 


A Call to Arms

New era,

new players,

new owners,

but always Cardiff.

The city of raw grit,

gum shield in,

lower the Castles draw bridge,

walk with the warriors led by Jockey,

ball gripped between the palms,

ready to fight,

The North and South, rivalry unites,

this is A Call to Arms.


Park your worries,

don your supportive game face,

for 80 minutes escape,

prepare to be entertained.


But first, let me salute to the King on Queens Street,

to the Duke’s Arcade,

The Blue and Blacks are great,

legends who laced their boots to pave the way,

to inspire the new players of the game today.


The Calm before the storm, any battle for the ball, Cam will win it,

we got Cabango, Faletau and the Rhondda front row who bust a gut to the finish,

to any opposition, I don’t mean to scare you,

but see what happens when you mess with the Mann, I Aberdare you,

cause no game’s a friendly, fans form a frenzy,

when outcomes the man repping Ely, Mackenzie,

he means business takes no prisoners,

big hits, Josh ad ‘em hear the roar from the home crowd,

Grady stepping up for the Vale shoutout to Dinas Powys my hometown,

and not forgetting the fly halves pass the beer, cheers, soon we’ll ALSO have Sheedy



Fly half, Cardiff created that phrase

and the 3-quarter system elevating the game.

We’ve played some tough teams, but we’ll never fall back,

I’m getting goosebumps from moments I recall back,

like the giant who changed the game, with a heart as a big as a blue whale, Jonah,

TJ’s resilience, Muller knocking people over,

the princes of the centre, first Gwyn then Bleddyn,

this has been the season of the fight like Dr. Jack when he stunned minds,

the only fighter who didn’t get rocked by Rocky, now that’s a punchline,

Gareth Edwards what a legend, Socks and Steveo sprinting in the zone,

Jenks dreamed of playing for Cardiff, Terry brought the passion at home.


Past to present players showing strength through unity,

new era, new players, new owners, one community,

Ymlaen Caerdydd, it’s true, it’s fact,

we are the best team,


The Blue and The Blacks.




Taking on the project was a no brainer for the 30-year-old and following that first initial meeting, it was fun steam ahead. 

He continued: “It started with an instagram message and then a really good meeting with Mike Brown. It was instantly something I wanted to be involved in and Mike gave me the brief, providing me with all the relevant information in terms of themes, players, history - all of the things really to allow me to fulfil the brief and answer the question that had been posed.

“I felt a huge responsibility.  I wanted the piece to be impactful not only to the fans but hopefully the players as well, I wanted it to resonate with them.

“So I got started researching the subject and the various players and thought it would be cool to play on some of the player names to keep it fresh. I wanted them to be subtle and quite clever but not so clever that it went over peoples heads!

“I began with the legends first and for me that meant Jonah Lomu. He was my favourite player growing up, the superstar of my generation and he played for Cardiff so I simply had to include him.


“There’s the line about Jonah with a heart as big as a blue whale, obviously because of the biblical story but the fact that it’s blue for Cardiff and whale because he played in Wales.

“it was also important to the club that I captured Cardiff the city. I’ve always thought about Cardiff being quite a raw, gritty city. There’s an amazing community here but it’s also got an urban, cool feel with some pretty tough people. Then I got to the castle, which is so iconic in the heart of the city, right by the Arms Park. 

“One of Mike’s points to include was a nod to the King (Barry John), who had recently passed away, and I thought it would be cool to link that to locations in the city like Queen Street and the Duke’s Arcade, which obviously ties into my own name.”

The video was shot at the Arms Park to enhance the atmosphere and Duke performed live alongside the Cardiff Arms Park Male Choir, who had written a background piece of oohs and ahhs, which built to a crescendo.

And now, having seen the finish article, Duke is delighted with the outcome.

He added: “The choir blew me away, I thought they were absolutely phenomenal. They set the tone for the whole performance on the night and were great sports with multiple takes in freezing weather.

“The guys from Whisper were also brilliant. The guys on the day were so talented and I thought some of the projections on the buildings and faces, interspersed with playing highlights was amazing.

“I’m chuffed to bits with the outcome. The biggest thing for me was that I created something that did the club, the city and the supporters justice, so to see the positive reaction so far has been great.

“I was hoping to come down this weekend but for once it’s an afternoon kick-off and I can’t make it! But we’re already looking ahead to next season and the potential of a live performance.”

To purchase a 2024-25 Season Membership click here or call 029 20 302030