Fay Ann Lyons-Alvarez sparked controversy at last weekend’s Soca in Moka party in Trinidad when she blasted the local music industry for not supporting the faster “power” style of soca. However, what her rant brought to the surface was the lingering question, “Is power soca dead?”
“…you telling younger artistes don’t do power cause we are not playing it so you already blocking people cause you are telling them there is no market for it,” Alvarez said in an interview with Loop TT.
“I turned to the crowd and said fight for your artistes, fight for your music and your culture. After I said what I said, I said anybody who disagree that you should not support the artform could kiss my black ass.”
Ironically, Alvarez and her husband, Bunji Garlin, have been at the forefront of a shift in the soca industry. Brass, drums and guitars are being increasingly replaced by Euro-dance music and dubstep. The so called afro soca subgenre has also gained popularity, and even the accents of the performers have started to mimic those of Americans.
Slower-paced soca music, otherwise known as groovy soca, afrobeat and dance have become all become dominant in Trinidad as artists seek international recognition, and Alvarez in among them.
Let’s explore the changes in the soca industry in this new episode of Trini Trent TV.