Fay-Ann Lyons hoping for increased soca sales
In an attempt to capitalise on the carnival season, veteran soca artiste Fay-Ann Lyons has released her debut album, Break the World.
The album has so far peaked on the Billboard Reggae Chart at number three, which is the highest honour for a female soca artiste of all time. Speaking with The Sunday Gleaner, Lyons expressed that the album is necessary since she is about to embark on her annual tour.
She also shared her views on the future of soca music as a genre.
"Well, most of the timing had to do with the fact that our carnival period has ended and we are on the road travelling. So it's easier to simultaneously promote and perform while on tour. Beside it being my first album, I wrote all the songs on it," she said.
Soca music hasn't necessarily been a bestseller on the global scene despite a growing cult-like following. Even genres like dancehall and reggae, which have declined in sales since the digital revolution, have still managed to still outsell the pulsating and exciting genre. However, Lyons believes the future for soca looks promising.
"Sales are not where we want it to be, (but) interest and use of it are there. However, marketing and markets are areas that need a boost. We need new markets and strategy to attract new people and new territories to the industry. At present, with the rate of how new markets are opening up, some of the present artistes may not get to perform. Sales also remain at its current state because the current market buys what and who they support. So we need more markets for more sales," she said.
In addition to improving sales, the artiste also hopes to see the industry treated with professionalism. Similar to criticisms levelled at the dancehall and reggae music industries, Lyons wants to see an improved structure.
"I would like to improve the mentality that it can't be run like an industry. When artistes in any industry don't see professionalism and proper structure as important, it's very hard to get progress that is consistent and constant," she said.
The album features Stonebwoy, Buffy, Joli Rouge, and international soca artiste Bunji Garlin.
Fay-Ann Lyons describes the project as entertaining and informative.
"Supporting the album is supporting the mission. All of us have set our focus on making the Caribbean soca community seen and heard internationally. We are a movement and a sound that the world should hear. The album is my contribution to that cause and my way of saying I will continue to do my part, in using my talents, song writing, performing and otherwise to promote my country, my culture, my Caribbean and my music," she said.
Break The World is currently distributed by VP Records and is available for purchase on iTunes, Amazon and other online outlets.