SANDRA L BLOOD
Youni-T, also known as the Ivory Queen of Soca, is said to be the first pure Caucasian all-American to solidify herself in the soca music genre, having started in 2013 when she sang her first soca tune at the Carnival Village, Trinidad, then-initially linked to T&T by local soca artiste, Preacher.
A Floridian school teacher/educator, this singer/songwriter and soca artiste known as Youni-T (pronounced, unity), said she never really knew what soca was until she started to perform and saw SuperBlue perform, but what she grew to realise is that “soca is a spirit that speaks directly to the soul, and it can be used in many ways to engender love.”
“I also sing Chutney Soca. I use soca as the foundation of my sound, but add a bit of American mainstream genre to create my own unique flavor which gave birth to my invention of the genre, Socamerica, as I also believe music and artistes are meant to unite the world. Socamerica is soca meets mainstream American music. I also love Carnivals. They are expressions of togetherness, love and freedom,” explained Youni-T.
On January 12, Youni-T dropped her new soca/Socamerica single, This Iz Freedom, on YouTube, but can be heard on all music platforms.
With the hook: start to wave, Youni-T said This Iz Freedom is an ode to Carnival. It’s a fiery soca that invites you to feel the love because it’s Carnival; it’s magical. It’s a call for unity and to free your soul. Enjoy the pan; take a wine; take a jump.
As the Ivory queen expressed, last year she collaborated with a few Trini soca artistes that caused her video to reach many soca lovers worldwide via social media. She also performed at quite a few Carnival fetes that were hosted by a series of top radio stations, nationwide.
In her native country, Youni-T is said to be found in the Carnival mix performing on the main stages which include Miami and Tampa Carnivals as recently as last year, NY, Orlando, San Diego, Key West, and South Carolina; sharing stages with big T&T acts such as Kes the Band, Bunji Garlin, Patrice Roberts, Nailah Blackman, SuperBlue, the late Ricardo Drue, and Nadia Batson, among others.
With a vision set on earning a Soca Grammy, Youni-T said she’s ready to expand her reach, dominate and ‘socafy’ the American mainstream airwaves – create a healthy evolution.
She has been featured on local (T&T) television and radio stations; in newspapers and magazines.
The platforms she has graced include: WACK Radio, Iconic 104.7FM, Red 96.7FM, I95.5FM, Maynard Radio, Our Radio, Gary Barrington, 94.1 Boom Champions, Next 99.1FM, The City Block, and TTT, in addition to having performed at various events such as: at The Pavement Lime Soca & Zess Live, Moiito Soca Wednesday, Soca Love Story, Fire Fest, A Team Band, J’ouvert Launch: Experience the Kingdom, among others.
Post Carnival 2023, Youni-T was found at Carnival Cabaret’s A Showcase of Super Power. Youni-T said she honors T&T’s Welcome Home theme, and proudly flies the T&T flag as an Ambassador of Soca Music and Caribbean Culture.
In 2019 she was nominated Florida Soca Artist of the Year by the International Soca Awards Commission in Miami, Fl.
Showing true unity and interest in spreading the T&T culture, Youni-T belted out a soca parang at Jacksonville, USA, Soca Parang Fiesta last year, and on Christmas Day at the birthday celebration of US-based professional executive Christopher “Chris” John, in his VIP suite, with Preacher and Rikki Jai.
Some of Youni-T’s other new releases are "Gyal on Fiya", "Phantasy" and Early Morning (J’ouvert Love), and apart from This Iz Freedom, her other brand, new works are the remixed Black Luv (Raize Yuh Voice and Make sumNoiz), Badda Dan Barbie, and The Game.
This Iz Freedom was written by Youni-T, produced by Anthony “Palmi” Alexander, Engineered by Eddy Beethoven (NH Records), and released by Socamerica.
Online booking: youni-t.com
For further information: (1) 786.348.1304