How many UK based teams do you know? Caribbean brands/companies/teams based in London UK are HUGELY successful in showcasing/promoting Caribbean culture in London and internationally. In our list of successful Caribbean UK BASED teams, we are not just describing ‘successful teams’ as those with the biggest numbers on social media (although they are included). For the most part the numbers do not really capture at all just how much these brands/companies actually do.
For us successful brands/companies are also those
- Who have made impact, are consistent and work hard outside of social media
- Who have been doing their thing for over a decade and are still very active
- Who have been influential in changing the carnival and soca landscape in the UK and has had a ripple effect internationally
- Who put the travel mileage in to promote carnival and soca
- Who have connected with the youth/mentoring and educate about the carnival culture
- Who are promoting and introducing carnival and soca to new cultures, new countries
- Who are doing something different or doing something that has been done previously but doing it really well.
We attempted to keep this list to below 20. That was not possible. And this showed us just how active the London Caribbean community is. We limited this list to brands/teams/companies who are promoting specifically and primarily the part of our Caribbean culture which is related to carnival or soca. There is more to the Caribbean culture than carnival and soca. Very true. We know this. But our primary focus right here are now is Carnival and Soca.
We have also limited this list to brands/ teams/ companies who are currently active throughout the year (such as have thrown more than one event outside of the Notting Hill Carnival season). Also, if we had to include many historical influences /brands/teams such as, this list would be never-ending.
Somewhat controversially, we had a general exclusion criteria because we really wanted to focus primarily on promotional teams (this also was not easy) this time round.
- We also have not included UK musicians/band and artists. We want to compile a separate list for them.
- We have also not really looked at companies/teams/ brands outside of London, simply because well, we are ignorant about them in that we do not know much about them (not for lack of trying).
- We have also not included carnival mas bands unless they have some events/are very active outside of the Notting Hill carnival season.
That being said, we did have some exceptions to our exclusion criteria. And that is because we felt their activities were quite prolific, made an impact and had to be included.
The Ibiza Soca Festival is held only once during the year. However, within that event (which was located in a new country for soca at the time Ibzia) are several events. The Ibiza Soca Team have been able to secure a good number of the most well known soca artists since inception and the numbers of attendees have grown considerably.
Soca can’t be said to the first love of the Just Vibez team. In fact, one of the more long standing prominent faces of the team is more of a hip hop head than anything else. However, Just Vibez has been influential in introducing the genre of soca and the concept of carnival to the general London public (at Southbank) and new areas of the globe such as Singapore and Reunion Island.
This a brand/team/ list. However, we have also included one or two individuals who we felt could not be excluded. Some are quite visible, and some are so underrated for their knowledge of soca it is unbelieveable. Have a look. What do you think?
ASHTON AND FRIENDS Events throughout the year and help secure international artists for concerts
BAJANS IN LONDON (Brand) Events throughout the year primarily for Bajans.
BAKAHNAL RADIO (Radio) This radio station plays soca all year round
BUSSPEPPER (Brand) At least 10 Soca fetes throughout the year. Has been running for over 10 years.
CARIBBEAN SESSIONS (Brand) Events throughout the year
CARNIVAL NETWORK (Media House)
CARNIVAL SLAYERS (Social Media)
DAME DU SHOW (Promotional Team) Have been doing events for over five years internationally. Caters also to the creole islands of the Caribbean.
DIGGA D (DJ) With aregular Radio show, maybe one of the most underrated individuals for his knowledge of soca music, especially from the less well known islands.
DJ TATE (DJ) Events during the year, perhaps one of the most influential individuals who helped introduced UK masqueraders to Berlin carnival. Promoter of Hush, Dreamland J’ourvert.
ELIMU MAS BAND (Carnival band) Been travelling for years to other countries such as China, showcasing carnival carnival culture.
FLAGZ (BRAND) Events throughout the year, involved in youth activities
GET MAD ENTERTAINMENT (Promotional Team) Events throughout the year, caters perhaps more than any other brand to the creole speaking side of Caribbean who love carnival and soca
IBIZA SOCA (Team) Successfully brought a soca festival to Ibiza, Spain.
INTENSITY fetes throughout the year
JUST VIBEZ (Promotional team) Events throughout the year, helped introduce soca to places like Singapore, Reunion, Southbank events showcasing Caribbean culture and music.
KONATA ALLEYNE (Brand) Events during the year, Bonnfire Fest, boat fete, podcast
LIVE LOVE SOCA (Brand)
LAVA BY SHIPWRECKED (Brand) Friday Events throughout the year
MARTIN JAY (DJ, Radio Presenter) Been promoting soca for over 20 years, boat rides, involved in youth training
MINGLE UK (BRAND) Events throughout the year, jam J’ouvert, all white, camouflage fete
Mr GENERAL (DJ) Travels internationally
PARTY CARIBBEAN (Media House)
PON DI UK (Media House)
PRINCE VERN PROMO (Events throughout the year)
RELEASE D RIDDIM (Brand) plays internationally throughout the year
REMEDY EVENTS (Events)
SOCA FRENZY (Promotional Team) Soca Events every month, over 10 years
SOCA LOCO (Promotional Team, Events)
SOCA NEWS (Media House)
SOCA PARTY UK (Promotional team)
SUN BALIANTE (Promotional Team)
SWEAT IN THE CITY (Health) Health events at least three times a year. Music primarily soca.
TRINIS IN LONDON (Media House) Been doing their thing since May 2003)
UCOM ( Offers Mentorship programme)
UK SOCA SCENE (Media House)
WORL MAG (Media House)
So, who you think should definitely be on our list and isn’t? Have we missed some teams/brands/DJs who have done more than one event throughout the year outside of Notting Hill Carnival Season? Who should be off our list? Who in your view are the most active throughout the year?