The Rounds: Kevin Lyttle Blazing the Japanese Charts with FYAH

>> Monday, September 29, 2008

Good Evening Soca Lovers,

I'm Nurse Karen and these are Dr. Jay's Rounds.

September is always a big month, when you think about going back to school, getting into a routine, and ushering in the Autumn season. So congrats to everyone for reaching the end in one piece...and congrats to one soca artiste who will likely remember this month for years to come.

A few weeks ago, you heard me mention the Japanese release of Kevin Lyttle's sophomore album "Fyah". The CD continues to blaze up those charts with the FYAH single occupying anywhere from number 26 all the way up to number 2, on the radio charts in major Japanese cities.

Kevin Lyttle at Maddzart's Wild Out in Wred Party, St. Vincent 2006

And as if you would expect anything less, the Fyah ringtone is a common sound in the busy streets of Tokyo. AND Besides all that, September just keeps on getting better for Kevin.

He rang in his thirty-second birthday on September 14th, and just last Friday he was nominated for an Urban Music Award in the UK. Fans can vote online...and the hardware will be handed out at London's 02 Centre on November 15th. It's a little weird, they stuck him in the reggae category alongside Shaggy and Spragga Benz..but accolades are accolades, and naturally we wish this soca ambassador continued success beyond September too!

Looking ahead, October is the Month when the SAO Soca Awards will be bestowed upon the top dogs in the soca world for 2008. The ceremonies take place in beautiful St. Kitts on the 18th of next month. If you'd like to be a part of the action, your best bet is to vote. Check out triple w dot soca awards dot com to throw your support behind Toronto-based nominees like Dr. Jay, Jester, Ms Boomerang and Toronto-Lime dot com.

In Trinidad with Jef from man behind it all! (2008)

November, well I'm sure you heard the news. The very biggest talk is Soca or Die, featuring a cast of acts selected by YOU...the listener.

Well, for those of you can't be in Toronto that weekend, the major action is in Dominica for the 12th edition of the World Creole Music Festival. Dominica will ring in its 30th year of independence from British rule...and will celebrate it in fine style for a whole week. Machel Montano HD will be there. Sean Paul will be there. Kassav and a slew of other amazing Caribbean acts. Over the years the festival has drawn more than 260, 000 visitors to the nature island. In 2008, organizers are hoping to break records for the special reunion year.

Toronto's DJ Kold Fusion will be returning to Dominica for the festivities...
Here we are in Trinidad on Carnival Tuesday! (2008)

I'm Nurse Karen and those were Dr. Jay's Rounds. Please leave me your comments online at the Nurse Karen Etc blog at triple w dot mustardseeds dot net....and get your podcast of Dr. Jay's Rounds at Soca Therapy dot com. Now Back to de docta!


The Rounds: Benjai is sick, so Machel's off the hook till next month!

>> Sunday, September 21, 2008

Good Evening Soca Lovers,

I’m Nurse Karen and these are Dr. Jay’s Rounds . I hope you are listening well, cause there’s a lot of info to catch this week.

About three years ago, a major development in Caribbean Entertainment began to reduce the distance between those beautiful islands. The MTV TEMPO TV channel was launched and last night St. Kitts played host to Tempo Forever – The Trilogy, the 3rd anniversary party and concert. As you all know, smack dab in the middle of hurricane season, this past week has been a wild one for rainfall in the region. So, Tempo Turns 3 was moved from Friday to Saturday night. It was a star studded show. Crowds were treated to performances from calypso greats the Mighty Sparrow and David Rudder AND from Soca circles; Destra Garcia, Denise Belfon, Claudette Peters and Machel Montano and company...

Speaking of Winer Boy himself, that old court case got pushed back again! Apparently Benjai, who is also one of the accused is ill with a chest infection, and is presently stuck in England and unable to travel. The case is adjourned until October 8th. So check me after thanksgiving for more detail on that front.

The big news out of Trinidad this week comes from the Caribbean Traffik Jam Camp. Lead singer Shurwayne Winchester has called it quits. Together the artiste and band have enjoyed a number of successful carnival season with road march wins and soca monarch crowns to boot. Doh look to me for Bacchanal, Shurwayne is just looking to develop his career in other ways. So we wish both HE and Traffik all the best. The departure becomes official on October 16th. So if you’re planning to see the whole act sometime soon....yuh still safe.

Now down to St. Lucia, last weekend a popular local soca artiste was shot by police. He goes by the name of Yardie. The incident happened in Vieux Fort after a woman called the cops about someone attempting to forcibly enter her home. Crazy story really. Police came. Yardie had already hightailed out by foot. He was then shot in the upper groin...and forced into the back of a police van...where he received a swift kick in the chest. Not cool.

Rumour on the ground has it that the woman involved has been romantically linked to both Yardie and the police officer with the gun. However, she made a statement on Lucian TV on Thursday negating those stories. There you have it!

I’m Nurse Karen and those were Dr. Jay’s Rounds. For more detail on any of these stories, visit me online at the Nurse Karen Etc blog at . Never miss your dose of the rounds by downloading the podcast from Soca Therapy dot com. Now back to de docta.


Booster Shot: Shurwayne Winchester to leave Traffik!

>> Thursday, September 18, 2008

So soca family...seasons change, right? Well it seems like it is now the end of an era for a team that seemed to have the recipe for success. Shurwayne Winchester, the lead singer of Caribbean Traffik Jam recently submitted his resignation to further develop his career in the soca genre.

Shurwayne Winchester and Nurse Karen in St. Vincent 2006

The parting is amicable from all accounts, so you won't find any bacchanal here. Shurwayne and Traffik will continue to honour all engagements together until October 16th, 2008. Then, who knows?

Shurwayne's team, SW Limited has great things planned, so we can only keep our fingers crossed to see what Trinidad Carnival 2008 has in store for the former Road March and Soca Monarch title holder.

Watch the transformation as it develops at

Get to Know Shurwayne


Booster Shot: Former Lucian Power Monarch Shot by Police

>> Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Andrew “Yardie” Haynes was shot on Saturday afternoon on a main Street in Vieux-Fort, St. Lucia. For those of you who don't know, he was a finalist in this year's Groovy and Power Soca Monarch competitions.

I watched him do his thang in Power Soca this year, a prize he's taken home in the past. It's kinda wild when these things happen. Read on. You'll see just how wild...

The artiste claims that police shot him in the upper thigh. He was then forced into the back of a police van where an officer continued to assault him with a foot to the chest. Now, there's speculation as to the appropriateness of the officer's conduct. Naturally, the police version of the story sounds substantially different.

According to Vernon Francois (Assistant Police Commissioner for Crime), Yardie became a person of interest after a woman called to alert them of a trespasser. It is alleged that Yardie threatened to forcibly enter her private home. As the story goes, the soca artist had already fled the area by the time the cops arrived.

Well, it doesn't take a genius to figure out that they eventually caught up with him. From the looks of it a gun made up for any headstart the entertainer might have had. Police allege that Yardie resisted arrest.

It's big talk in St. Lucia, and I'll tell you why. Local rumors are circulating that the woman who placed the call to the police was dating the officer who pulled the trigger. Today she released a statement saying that she does not know the man, and never intended for Yardie to get hurt.

It's worth noting that Lucian police officers are licensed to carry firearms, however, at present the police force does not make use of incapacitators such as pepper spray or tasers. There is a new bill before Senate proposing that this be changed.

Yardie will be alright, but nobody likes a shot to the groin. Check in with me next carnival and we'll see if Yardie's voice has gone up a few octaves. Not funny, right? I know.

Get to Know Yardie



The Rounds: St. Kitts and Nevis Carnival to Launch at Soca Awards

>> Sunday, September 14, 2008

Good Evening Soca Lovers, I'm Nurse Karen and these are Dr. Jay's Rounds. News, news, news! Lemme start with the weekend and go back....

Lauded Guyanese cultural singer Lady Guymine was honored this past Friday in Brooklyn. The event was a fundraising benefit to assist the ailing perfomer with her medical needs as she advances in age.

On stage that nightwas a cast of all-star performers from the Caribbean Region including Trinidad's Calypso King Sugar Aloes and St. Vincent's Winston Soso.

Nurse Karen and Winston Soso

Here in Toronto, Tribal Knights Mas Camp was first out the gate with the release of its 2009 Caribana Theme. Mas is tight competition in these parts. These days the newer players in the game are taking no prisoners. You heard it here first: Birds of Paradise. Can't wait to see what Dexter Seusahai has up his sleeves.

The government of St. Kitts and Nevis is getting geared up for Tourism Awareness month in October. It will be a busy time for the twin island state as they host the International Soca Awards. One special highlight of this year's soca awards, will be that is coincides with the official launch of St. Kitts' 2008/2009 carnival season. Which reminds me, If you haven't voted as yet. No time is like the present to log on to triple w dot soca awards dot com to show your support by VOTING for your favourite soca personalities like Dr. Jay!

Nurse Karen and Dr. Jay

Voting is on everybody's mind these days. We have a Federal Election looming here in Canada next month, and the most high profile presidential race ofall time in the US. If you're a soca music lobbyist like me, don't forget tomorrow is your last chance to Vote for who you want to see at Soca Or Die Nine. Dr. Jay will be bringing all manner of artists to Toronto for the big Scorpio Birthday Bash on November 1st. So chose your favourites from Antigua, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, St.Lucia, St. Vincent, Toronto AND Trinidad and send your top picks to soca at flow 935 dot com or socaprince at hotmail dot com. Speak now, orf orever hold your peace!

Nurse Karen and Shurwayne Winchester

Amidst the hectic onslaught of summer carnival releases some of you may not have paid enough much attention to a very sexy groovy collaboration featuring Shurwayne Winchester and Maxi Priest. Two of the caribbean's most consistent entertainers have teamed up to give us "Make it Yours."

Make It Yours F.Maxi Priest (2008 Barbados/09 Trinidad) - Shurwayne Winchester

It was released in July, but the video was shot thispast week in T and T. The song was produced by Red Boyz out of Barbados….a production team that is causing major waves throughout the Caribbean. Now you know!

Last but not least... We at Soca Therapy would like to extend belated birthday greetings to Mr. Rupert Clarke AKA Rupee. He started his NEW YEAR at the top of last week.
Rupee hun, I hope it' s not your age what has you singing feet don't fail me now

Feet Dont Fail Me (2008 Barbados) - Rupee

…and with that…I'm Nurse Karen and those were Dr. Jay's Rounds. Leave me your comments on the Nurse Karen Etc blog at triple W Dot Mustard Seeds Dot Net, and as always get the rounds podcast to go at Soca Therapy dot Com. Now, back to de Docta!


The Rounds: Brother B injured in car crash

>> Sunday, September 7, 2008

Good Evening Soca Lovers,

I'm Nurse Karen and these are Dr. Jay's Rounds. Hard to believe it is September. The whirl wind of Caribbean summer carnivals has ended, and the big street parties in the diaspora will wrap up soon. Last weekend the action was in New York City, for the annual West Indian Day Parade. Almost all your favourite soca personalities were on hand to dazzle their American fans.

Faye-Ann and Bunji preparing to go on stage at Battle of the Bands, NY

One noticeably absent performer, however, was St. Lucia's reigning soca monarch, Ricky T. He stayed home with his family to usher in the birth of his first child.

Another soca ambassador who was absent from the Brooklyn action on Monday was Mr. Kevin Lyttle. Many of you have been asking what became of that much talked about 2nd commercial album that has been brewing for years. The album is called FYAH, and it was finally released last week in Japan. Over the weekend, Kevin was in Asia promoting the 18 track CD that features collaborations with the likes of Alison Hinds, Lexxus, Skinny Fabulous and Problem Child. It was released on Universal Japan, so you can't get it on this side of the globe quite yet unless you're willing to pay for shipping from Amazon's Japanese online store.

Nurse Karen and Kevin Lyttle

Farmer Nappy shared his vocal stylings alongside the HD camp last Thursday at SOB's, and Saturday at ACNY at the Cipriani in Manhattan. Then it was back to the Caribbean to shoot the music video for Belly Dancer. The song was originally released for Barbados Crop Over, but will be re-released for the Trinidad market along with the video by early November. Nappy's also getting his hands dirty with something called the United Soca Movement. You heard it here first, more details soon.

Farmer Nappy and Nurse Karen

Last but not least, I'd like to send out warm wishes to Grenadian soca singer Brother B. He was injured in a serious car accident last weekend. You may know him from songs like "Pork" from last year, or Grenada's most requested song of 2008, "Little Wine" The 24-year-old artiste damaged his waist and fractured his arm, but is reported to be recovering speedily.

I'm Nurse Karen and those were Dr. Jay's Rounds. If you'd like to check out some of the New York Labour Day action for yourself, be sure to suss out pics, videos and journals online at the Nurse Karen Etc blog at triple w dot mustardseeds dot net. And you enjoy having the latest in soca news on the go, download Dr. Jay's Rounds at Soca Therapy dot com. Now back to de Docta!


Nurse's Lounge: Toronto Creole Festival

>> Saturday, September 6, 2008

Back in beautiful Toronto. If you haven't heard me say it before, this city is great. Toronto is where I was born and raised...and I really appreciate its vibrancy, diversity and charm. I woke up to rain absolutely everywhere....but NOW, it's sunny, warm and perfect for exploring. It's a good thing Bert from Black Berry Soundcrew let me know about Toronto's 1st Annual Creole Day.

It's a celebration of the history, music and culture of the islands that share a French colonial past...and the resulting hybridized indigenous tongue that combines French with African idioms. How's that for history?

I decided to walk down to Coronation Park on the Lakeshore to show a little support to my Dominican, Lucian and Haitian bros and sisses to make the most of my day. Umm....Kold Fusion, where were YOU????

Here's what I saw...


Nurse's Lounge: Jumping Up on the Parkway

>> Monday, September 1, 2008, my time in NY is just about done. I always have a great time down here. Maybe it's how the place is so compact, you're just bound to run into all sorts of people.

I didn't play mas in Brooklyn. I'm sure none of you are that disappointed that you're not seeing me in costume. (The Summer body just expired anyway) Monday was just a nice relaxing lime in Brooklyn. I took some time to watch the band go by. Then my girls and I took a small jump before calling it a day. Here's a bit of what we saw.

Yeah, I know. I missed a lot. That's what happens when you roll out of bed late. That and when the police block of 80% of the entrances to the parade route. In the end, I made it!


Nurse's Lounge: Battle of the Bands

Ok, here's the scene. When I think of Labor Day carnival, swanky midtown venues is not the first thing that comes to mind. But, I'm definitely all for change, so long as it doesn't alienate the people who have been supporting the art form from jump.

Battle of the Bands has moved to the Roseland Ballroom this year. It's a huge, classy venue in Manhattan. No doubt it cost real money to put on a fete up here. I'd guess that it could comfortably accommodate 5000 patrons. So Bless up to Shaka and the rest oft he team from Upscale Crowd Ent & Caribbean Fuse for going the extra mile. Not just for "trying a ting", but not jacking up the ticket price too much higher than what ppl pay for similar events in Brooklyn.


1. FINALLY meeting Oungku of Red Hot Flames. PORDY ON DUDES!!! Believe it or not, the first CD i ever bought with my own money was DIG by Burning Flames. Okay, it wasn't exactly MY money. It was lunch money, from my Mommy. But is me who spent it! The new album from RED HOT FLAMES is called SCYATTAH! Buy it. It features the 2008 road march: Musical Bomb! Here's a shot of yours truly with Oungku.

2. Krosfyah large and in charge. See for yourself. Edwin and the boys are clearly on cloud 9 following a stellar Crop Over season. Not sure if I've told you before. I love to watch this band.

Edwin, Khiomal and Adrian bring energy, sexiness and crisp vocals every time. I watched their performance from way up in the VIP balcony, but I could feel each and every pelt, chook and wine!

3. Shurwayne making the most of it. It has to suck to be the ONLY artist at Battle of the Bands whose very reputable band was not booked for the show. Shurwayne knew exactly how to command the crowd with a little help from Toronto's own Bassline (Enforcas) on the 1's and 2's. Watch how Shurwayne hypes up a bunch of West Indians with New York City's favourite music at the end.

4. Asylum PERIOD. I'm trying to count how many times I've seen this band for 2008. I lost count...probably because I loved it every time. This is definitely a big year for Bunji and Faye-Ann. The very nature of Bunji's live appeal is his ability to improvise. That means that with him at the helm, you're never getting the same thing twice from Asylum. When they play I generally see Duvone Stewart beating the hell out of a pan. Last night's show featured Dane Gulstan who I've mentioned before. Well ladies as you can see...he's talented and he cute.

Here's a wee clip to show you why I'm so hype off this act! Big Up IP. I appreciate the link.

The biggest let down of the night. Yes, there was ONE. Ricky T wasn't there. After having the studio 758 team show me the best of times while I was in St. Lucia, I have to admit that I was really looking forward to seeing everyone in New York.

To Ricky's credit though, he chose to be in St. Lucia, so he could be present for the birth of his first child. Congrats Ricky. Unfortunately, the patrons weren't made aware of this development before the show. So, the Lucian posse was pretty disappointed. None the less, they represented...and had an amazing night sharing they crazy vibes from the front of the stage.



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