I’m asking you to do a favour –  On Spotify or YouTube or Apple Music or whatever the kids are using today type in “soca” and have a listen. ⁣

I’ve already mentioned Calypso music during my Black History Month coverage. Soca music is Calypso music made modern. It is some of the most vibrant, happy, up-tempo, soulful music you have ever heard. It carries a dance in the beat. ⁣

And the man who is credited with its genesis is Garfield Blackman. His sobriquet was first Lord Shorty and then Ras Shorty I. We call him the “Father of Soca”. ⁣

He was a prolific songwriter and musician with an amazing gift for blending and creating sound. He was able to blend things together in a unique way to create something completely new. ⁣
He later added Indian musical instruments to his sound, a precursor to what we call “chutney soca” in Trinidad bringing the sounds of Trinidad’s Indian community into the mainstream even though he was of African descent. ⁣

He said his mission was to promote the “Indianisation of Calypso” and he effectively created a movement, a boom, an embracing of the sound and the uniting of cultures. ⁣

And this is why I’m featuring him today. It’s the perfect way to bring Black History Month 2020 to a close. With an amazing story of allyship. ⁣

I hope you have learned things by reading my Black History Month 2020 posts, including that we are more alike than different. What will you be doing to be a better ally to the Black community going forward? ⁣