POET Sterling Henderson captures soca music as a form of healing for Caribbean people in his debut EP When Soca Full Meh Mouth
“When soca full meh mouth I does taste all kinda ting. Like red plum at the right temperature… When soca full meh mouth I does taste paradise,” Henderson recites in the title piece.
A radio journalist at i95.5fm, where he launched the spoken word album on June 3, Henderson said he remains excited, encouraged and hopeful by seeing his dream come to fruition.
“The feedback has been tremendous in that people have been giving the album positive reviews. Many people are just happy for me. I think people really view it as a major accomplishment and expressed how proud they are of me. This has been tremendously encouraging.”
Henderson believes this is but the beginning of the project. He said, “The launch is not where it ends, but really the way to get things started. It is now about what's next and how I am going to keep the momentum going in terms of promoting the album.”
The body of work explores many features of the human experience, and the observations of TT – the land of soca.
Henderson effortlessly and skilfully constructs experiences of nature, culture and he explores a Caribbean history influenced by tribal wars and oppression.
Asked his favourite part of the process since the moment the idea of making an album came to him, Henderson said, “When we started recording.”
He said the experience he had in 2017 of putting all the words together in the studio was the realisation of a dream for him. “I always wanted to do a project like this and this just started moving effortlessly. That's truly how it was.”
Asked if he encountered any challenge in completion of the album, he said “The most significant shift had to do with the actual release date.”
Henderson said, “It was thought the album would be widely available by Wednesday. However, due to the lockdown in response to the spread of covid19, the company responsible for distribution will now take five weeks to do what would normally would be accomplished in one.”
Henderson said people will not be able to listen to the album on major music streaming platforms such as Tidal, Spotify and Apple Music just yet.
“I happen to have had a series of live performances before the lockdown. Those attracted some good audiences. Keeping the feedback I received in mind has been another source of encouragement.”
Henderson is, therefore, looking forward to gathering with lovers of poetry as soon as restrictions are lifted and people are able to gather in larger numbers for live performances.
Asked which poem he would want someone to listen to if they would like to get a taste of the album, he said How To Sell A Gun. He said this piece is very sensory and should take the listener on a journey — to say the least.
When Soca Full Meh Mouth is now available on bandcamp.com.