Destra eyes new ground

BY SIMONE MORGAN Observer staff reporter morgans@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, April 11, 2014    

Print this page Email A Friend!

THESE are busy times for Trinidadian soca artiste Destra Garcia. The singer, who performs this evening at Bachannal Fridays at New Mas Camp, is also preparing for shows in London later this month and recording new songs.

Garcia is known for soca hits including Anyhow Ah Like it, Love Somebody, Fly, Mash Up, Handle the Ride and Call my Name.

But though she has been in the game for nearly 20 years, remaining relevant in the male-dominated soca industry is no easy task.

"A man can just throw on their clothes and go, but for us females it takes a lot of preparation, from hair to make-up. We have to write songs that will be just up to standard with our male counterparts...We have to rock the stage like them, too," she told Splash.

The 36-year-old Garcia is also trying to break new ground. She is working with Florida producer J Vibe on

several songs aimed at broadening her appeal.

J Vibe also produced Garcia and Peetah Morgan's collaboration called Real Love.

Soca artistes such as Machel Montano, Kevin Lyttle, Rupie, Bunji Garlin and Fayon Lyons have made inroads in the North American pop market. Lyons recently signed with VP Records, a company largely responsible for breaking dancehall in the United States.

Last year, Lyon's husband Bunji Garlin enjoyed success with the Major Lazer remix of his soca hit, Differentology. Is soca music finally making a mark in the US?

"We have a long way to go but we are on the right track. It's slow in coming but it's just a matter of time before the music gets fully global," she said, adding: "Coming from a region where reggae and Calypso is more popular, we are not doing too bad. Garcia has not done too bad for herself either."

She won the 2003 Road March title at the Labour Day Carnival in Brooklyn, New York. That year, she placed second in the Trinidad and Tobago Soca Monarch.

She is yet to win

her country's coveted Road March title, having finished runner-up in 2004 and 2009.

"As I grow, I see where I could do things differently along my journey, but I have no regrets as those little mistakes have helped to mould me into the artiste that I am today," she said.

Tonight, Garcia performs with her band Bakanal and Silver, their new lead vocalist.





1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper – email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

comments powered by Disqus


Do you think an increase in JUTC bus fares is justified at this time?

View Results »


Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon