Performing on the Soca on the Hill stage for the first time, the voice behind the hit, Freaky Girls, received a warm welcome from the thousands of soca lovers who swarmed the Farley Hill National Park on Sunday.
Ricky Teasel Joseph, also known as Ricky T, hit the stage to perform the 2016 hit to the delight of patrons. The St Lucian soca artiste is a seasoned campaigner, having won collectively 19 titles in Groovy Soca, Power Soca Monarch and Road March back home.
During his 12-year career, Ricky T has delivered a string of megahits like Pressure Boom, Container, Freaky Girls and his 2017 Road March winner, Sully, which has received major airplay despite placing fourth in the Groovy Soca competition.
But aside from making music and hit after hit, Ricky T has also become a mentor and role model for many in the industry back home.
“They are watching me like an idol so I have to show them the appreciation and love that they need. I have to hold down on them, and give them that love and share what I know,” he told Bajan Vibes.
“Right now [the focus] is to bring up more and better little youths who are in the game and try to teach them the same things that I learnt from travelling and uplifting the game,” Ricky T added.
St Lucia Carnival 2017 brought to the fore a variety of popular songs aside from Ricky T’s Sully and Dunkard. Split In the Middle by Freezy, Guttah by Motto and Sock It by Ambi and Bruno were some of the others.
Ricky T attributes the season’s success to late nights and endless studio sessions from the younger generation.
“The guys are learning and right now, they are paying attention. They are looking at their elders and knowing what they have to do. They are elevating themselves, sitting around and thinking and most importantly they are praying . . . . They talk to me all the time and say they want to uplift the music,” he said.
As he continues to travel the circuit performing, Ricky T explained that the secret to his success was referring to life’s experiences in his music. “What I see and learn from always gives me a hit. Like freaky girls, seeing ladies respecting ladies, a woman is your mother and your sister so that gives me opportunity to sing. It is not just about being freaky, it is a love of women,” he revealed.
Although not too familiar with the bashment soca genre, which has created some criticism nationally, the St Lucian performer encouraged Barbadian artistes to move forward as they experiment and master their craft.
“Music is music and once the people enjoy themselves with no violence and on a peaceful level, to me it is good. We just have to go forward with it no matter what type of music,” he stated.