Welcome to Music Matters: The Caribbean Edition

The podcast series featuring news, interviews and analysis of all the music from the islands.
Music business conversations with hosts Laura and Nigel focused on the Caribbean.

This podcast is not associated or affiliated with Music Matters on BBC3.


Listen to the latest episodes here.

Episode 44:
Globalisation and Commercialisation of Caribbean Music

Nov 28, 2022 | 74 minutes

Laura and Nigel welcome UK-born Barbadian emeritus professor of the Recording Industry, author and consultant Mike Alleyne to the podcast as he discusses the global industry "adjustments" made to successfully market indigenous Caribbean music and artistes.

Episode 43:
Valuing Caribbean Music: The Jamaica Example

Nov 04, 2022 | 59 minutes

Laura and Nigel have a conversation with Donovan Watkis of World Music Views about how his push to chart and certify Jamaican music's global sales and streams is converting cultural capital into financial capital.

Episode 42:
Memoir, Management, Machel Montano: 'Lady' Montano Speaks

Aug 12, 2022 | 69 minutes

Laura and Nigel have a conversation with Elizabeth 'Lady' Montano, mother of Caribbean music superstar, Machel Montano, and author of his new coffee-table memoir/biography "King of Soca".

Episode 41:
The Post-Pandemic Future of Caribbean Festivals and Music

Aug 04, 2022 | 64 minutes

Laura and Nigel have a conversation where they ponder the future of the Caribbean music industry after the disruption of the two-year COVID-19 pandemic. The evolution of music festivals and Carnivals, the new economy of music for new and legacy artists, and more.

Episode 40:
Breaking Caribbean Music in America

May 16, 2021 | 76 minutes

Laura and Nigel speaks to Caribbean-American music executive Nolan Baynes on the ins and out of the modern US music industry, as he lays out what needs to be done by Caribbean artists and music businesses to get a significant space in that market.

Episode 39:
Caribbean Music Across the Pond: A Conversation with Seani B

Mar 08, 2022 | 78 minutes

Laura and Nigel speak with BBC Radio 1Xtra DJ and selector Seani B about his prominent role in putting Caribbean music on the radio in the UK and beyond, and on global playlists.

Episode 38:
Hard Truths: A Conversation on soca with Jaiga TC

Nov 30, 2021 | 71 minutes

Laura and Nigel speak with soca entrepreneur and facilitator, Terron Callender, JAIGA TC, on the way forward for the music genre. He gets real on the possibilities of soca in the global music industry highlighting pluses and pitfalls.

Episode 37:
A new season, a new beginning for the Caribbean music industry

Nov 13, 2021 | 48 minutes

Laura and Nigel begin the fourth season of the podcast with a conversation on the outlook and some of the recent happenings within the Caribbean music industry after 20 months of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Episode 36:
Soca begins GRAMMY Best Global Performance contention

Jul 07, 2021 | 67 minutes

Laura and Nigel speak to Kasey Phillips of Precision Productions and Marlon Fuentes, former Global Music Manager of the Recording Academy about the importance of representation and how the new Global Performance category could help Caribbean artistes.

Episode 35:
Licensing and Global Collaborations: Braveboy to the World

Jun 24, 2021 | 76 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with trapso creator, Braveboy about his career in a world where live music is limited. His prolific global collaborations with artists everywhere has yelded unique licensing deals for this Caribbean artist.

Episode 34:
What's Chrending? A Conversation with Fay-Ann Lyons Alvarez

Apr 23, 2021 | 64 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with soca star and music entrepreneur, Fay-Ann Lyons Alvarez on her music career, live and recorded, during the pandemic and her move into streaming music platform development with the launch of her new service, Chrending.

Episode 33:
Innovation in the Caribbean Music Industry

Apr 08, 2021 | 60 minutes

Laura and Nigel have a conversation on the implications of the small steps in digital innovation happening in the Caribbean music industry. A conversation on what's happening and what's to be done.

Episode 32:
Video's Role in Promoting Soca

Mar 21, 2021 | 51 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with Navindra Harbukhan of NH Productions TT on the role of video in the promotion of soca music. He gives a masterclass on how video can break this music to the world.

Episode 31:
Caribbean Music Industry Conversations - Lloyd Stanbury

Dec 21, 2020 | 56 minutes

Laura and Nigel speak with Jamaican music industry lawyer and entrepreneur — IRIE-FM, the Caribbean Music Expo and more — Lloyd Stanbury on the Jamaican and wider Caribbean industry, looking forward, post-COVID-19.

Episode 30:
Soca Sessions, Season 2: Destra Garcia

Dec 15, 2020 | 42 minutes

Laura and Nigel have a fun-filled yet open chat with the Queen of Bacchanal, soca star Destra Garcia on her career and how she has been able to sustain her brand for more than two decades and through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Episode 29:
Soca Sessions, Season 2: Kerwin Du Bois

Nov 07, 2020 | 57 minutes

Laura and Nigel continue in The Soca Sessions with an intriguing chat with Toronto-based singer, composer and producer Kerwin Du Bois on his role in crafting a new crop of soca entrepreneurs.

Episode 28:
Soca Sessions, Season 2: Erphaan Alves

Oct 16, 2020 | 39 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with Trinidadian soca artiste, Erphaan Alves, who for the past five years has championed the "No Seasons" campaign, an initiative designed to encourage soca artistes to release music all year instead of a season.

Episode 27:
Soca Sessions, Season 2: Problem Child

Oct 4, 2020 | 35 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with St. Vincent-born, US-based soca performer and prolific composer, Problem Child about the business of soca in this time when the the 2020 Carnivals were cancelled and the possibility that next year's may be on hold.

Episode 26:
A Conversation with Pat Meschino

Sep 10, 2020 | 43 minutes

Laura and Nigel speak to Billboard magazine writer, Pat Meschino, about the coverage of Caribbean music in the US and foreign print and editorial media.

Episode 25:
A Conversation with DJ Private Ryan

Aug 22, 2020 | 39 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with Trinidad-based DJ Private Ryan about how he is coping commercially and creatively during the COVID-19 pandemic. His varied career as an important soca DJ, as a major Carnival fete promoter, and recently as a music producer are examined.

Episode 24:
What could a post-COVID-19 music future look like?

May 16, 2020 | 42 minutes

Laura and Nigel speak with musician, journalist and NYU professor Jason King, a Trini to the bone, who ponders on the possibilities and tracks the trends for a post-pandemic music future.

Episode 23:
Dada and the Caribbean Music Family

May 16, 2010 | 43 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with Dominican super-producer, Krishna "Dada" Lawrence to get a handle on the wider Caribbean music scene. Dada outlines the possibilities for Caribbean music outside of Carnivals and festivals.

Episode 22:
Live in the time of COVID-19

Apr 22, 2020 | 42 minutes

Laura and Nigel return for the first of the "lock down podcasts" during the global COVID-19 pandemic. They speak on the decimation of the live music industry and the rise of the virtual concerts online with Kenny Phillips.

Episode 21:
Beyond Soca - A Conversation with Sheriff Mumbles

Mar 10, 2020 | 70 minutes

Laura and Nigel have a revealing conversation with innovative music producer, Keron "Sheriff Mumbles" Thompson on his outlook on the status of new music from Trinidad and Tobago. Carnival 2020 is discussed.

Episode 20:
Conversations with Charlie

December 03, 2019 | 51 minutes

Laura and Nigel interview the premier soca entrepreneur, Rawlston "Charlie" Charles on his role in recording and distributing calypso and soca music. [The first interview was first broadcast on Festival Radio for Carifesta XIV in August 2019. Produced by Trini Good Media.]

Episode 19:
Caribbean Music Festivals

Nov 09, 2019 | 61 minutes

Laura and Nigel reminisce on the various music festivals they have visited in the islands, and chat with Dr Suzanne Burke, culture sector researcher at The UWI who gives perspective on the role these destination music festivals.

Episode 18:
The Digital Music Future in the Caribbean

Sep 15, 2019 | 51 minutes

Laura and Nigel speak to Trinidad-based music entrepreneur and educator Farley J. Joseph about his research and findings on Caribbean music industry's readiness and potential to fit into the global digital music landscape.

Episode 17:
How to Make a Soca Star

August 20, 2019 | 43 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with manager/music producer Anson PRO Soverall who manages rising soca star Nailah Blackman to find out his strategy for making a superstar out of this young singer, the grand-daughter of the chief innovator of soca, Ras Shorty I.

Episode 16:
The Ins & Outs of the Soca Industry

July 26, 2019 | 54 minutes

Laura and Nigel interview Trinidadian music super-producer Kasey Phillips, now relocated to Los Angeles, to get a behind the scenes view of what it takes to build a Caribbean music genre in the largest music market in the world.

Episode 15:
How to build a music business company

May 16, 2019 | 43 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with acclaimed jazz musician Etienne Charles from Trinidad about how he built his international career. His forays into the business of music in the US are examined to understand how building a personal music corporation is necessary for sustained growth and success.

Episode 14:
The Soca Sessions #4: Soca in the Global Digital Marketplace

February 21, 2019 | 41 minutes

Laura and Nigel speak with UK-born Trinidadian music industry professional Keith Kirk about the prospects of soca in the global digital marketplace. Keith keeps it real and give a direct analysis of what is happening now and what has to be done.

Episode 13:
The Soca Sessions #3:Soca Management and Marketing

January 29, 2019 | 46 minutes

Laura and Nigel have a wide ranging discussion with Simon Baptiste, CEO of Question Mark Entertainment of Trinidad, and manager of Kes The Band among others, about the possibilities for the spread of soca music in the global marketplace.

Episode 12:
The Soca Sessions #2: Defining and Marketing Soca Globally

January 17, 2019 | 47 minutes

Laura and Nigel continue, in the The Soca Sessions, the conversation on what is soca and what needs to be done to increase global uptake. Music producers Martin 'Mice' Raymond and Keshav Chandradathsingh give input along with sound engineer Robin Foster on what still needs to be done.

Episode 11:
The Soca Sessions #1: What is Soca?

January 06, 2019 | 43 minutes

Laura and Nigel ask "What is soca? How is it defined?" In the first edition of our Carnival special The Soca Sessions we discuss soca, its roots and surprising similarities to today's trends with one of the rising producers in the artform and veterans who worked with the inventor of Soca, Ras Shorty I.

Episode 10:
Public Money, Commercial Music

November 8, 2018 | 39 minutes

Laura and Nigel have a candid conversation with Melissa Jiménez, General Manager of the Trinidad & Tobago Music Company Ltd., as a follow-up to the Live Music District in T&T episode. The State's track record on the new initiatives to incentivise the T&T music industry is reviewed.

Episode 9:
The Business of Calypso in the 21st century

October 16, 2018 | 40 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with Meagan Sylvester of the Trinbago Unified Calypsonians' Organisation (TUCO) about the role and business of calypso in the 21st century. A modern perspective from an official source is given to identify a calypso renaissance both artistically and commercially, and the work being done towards that end.

Episode 8:
The New Breed: Soca 3.0

September 16, 2018 | 38 minutes

Laura and Nigel discuss this new generation's efforts at breaking soca and calypso into the international marketplace. They chat with artist/songwriter Jimmy October about his "New Calypso" and producer David 'Millbeatz' Millien about his "Caribbean Wave" as genres and new ways of defining Caribbean music.

Episode 7:
The Bajan Soca Industry

August 5, 2018 | 49 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat about the Bajan soca industry after the recent Crop Over on the island of Barbados. As a conclusion to the cycle of 2018 Caribbean Carnivals, they have a better overview of soca in the Caribbean. Includes a wide-ranging interview with legendary Bajan soca star Red Plastic Bag.

Episode 6:
A Conversation with Freetown Collective

July 12, 2018 | 41 minutes

Laura and Nigel sit down with Muhammad Muwakil and Lou Lyons of FREETOWN Collective to discuss their new album, Born In Darkness, and to chat about that album in the context of the modern music industry. As a bellwether of new full length album production in T&T, Muhammad and Lou explain how this project interacts with the current music ecosystem.

Episode 5:
The Live Music Industry in the Islands

June 16, 2018 | 40 minutes

Laura and Nigel discuss the state of the live music industry in Trinidad and Tobago in the context of the government's plan to create a Live Music District in Port of Spain to act as a tourism magnet for visitors to the island. The experience and results of the State's efforts are gauged to derive the roles of the private sector and the State sector in developing the industry.

Episode 4:
Caribbean music, broadcast and IP

April 14, 2018 | 41 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat about the reality of the slightly behind-the-curve business models and thinking about broadcast media and its role in distributing music and creating economic rights for artists, composers, producers and performers in the Caribbean.

Episode 3:
A Conversation with Josanne Leonard

March 3, 2018 | 36 minutes

Laura and Nigel chat with Josanne Leonard, regional music industry expert, on the music industry in Trinidad and Tobago with links to the wider Caribbean music industry and preferred strategies going forward in light of the ongoing state-dominated industry thrust toward its further development.

Episode 2:
The Globalisation of Soca

February 9, 2018 | 30 minutes

Laura and Nigel continue the discussion on the relative global spread of this music born in Trinidad. The wider international thrust by singers, DJs and producers from America, Europe and Africa to put the music on the same public consciousness as reggae and dancehall, for example, is considered.

Episode 1:
SOCA: A Caribbean Phenomenon

January 9, 2018 | 37 minutes

Laura and Nigel discuss the spread of soca music from its base in Trinidad and Tobago to encompass rhythms and musical cues from other islands in the Caribbean. Producers, singers and fans from all the islands make this music more than Trinidad Carnival music.

Show Hosts

Nigel A. Campbell writes on music and the business of music. He is the founder of iRADIO.tt

Follow Nigel at:

Subscribe To Our Podcast


Music Matters: The Caribbean Edition | Listen Notes


Contact us below.