In the mainstream music industry today soca music is not a worldwide product and is mainly known by ethnic minorities from the Caribbean
Soca music is known for having strong rhythmic sections done by drum sets. Due to its strong influence from Africa. More recently soca has used synthesized drum sounds and has taken on more of a pop influence.
The biggest soca hit is the 1982 song (Feelin’) Hot Hot Hot by Arrow. Other leading artists include,
Above is one of Machel Montano’s album covers, showing his various stages through his long-running career. He is well-known for his high-energy performances as well as catchy, unforgettable songs MACHEL MONTANO
DESTRA GARCIA Destra Garcia is soca’s vixen, she is one of the biggest and best soca artists of all time.
Within the media there are very few TV channels that show soca music, these are:
These are mainly shown in the Americas
Question – One In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?
A music video is a film/video that accompanies a piece of music or a song. In more modern times it has been developed as a marketing device for the promotion of an artist or album. Because of this, music videos’ complexity has increased.
To answer this question I have referred to Andrew Goodwin’s Generic music video Forms and Conventions.
USE – There is a relationship between the lyrics and the visuals
Bright text appearing in our video, reading out the lyrics that were being sung in the song. This added a bit more life to the video. This is similar to ‘Palance’ by JW and Blaze where text also appears in a similar fashion.
Lip-syncing of the lyrics being sung in the song was used in various shots. Like in many modern music videos where the artist is lip-syncing the lyrics of the song.
Cont. Lip syncing the first verse to the song, illustrating movements that match the lyrics.
We used this through the editing style of the video. By cutting the shots to match the beat. We enhanced this between 02:01 and 02:11, where we fast cut the shots in time with a specific drum beat.
We also used this through dancing, laughter and the bright coloured text matching the upbeat rhythm within the music.
These techniques are used both in soca music videos as well as mainstream music videos.
USE – There is a relationship between the music and the visuals
By showing women/girls of different ages and sizes, not being shown as sexual items, just being normal and having fun. I believe we challenged and developed this convention in a positive way. It showed that it was possible to show women/girls in non-sexual ways but still make the video look exceptional. Unlike in the majority of modern videos.
CHALLENGE and DEVELOP – T here is likely to be reference to voyeurism, particularly in the treatment of women
Soca music videos are quite simple in terms of what conventions, style, iconography etc. They usually contain women in revealing clothing, dancing, carnival/partying, beaches, islands.
We used the dancing within our video and requested a small routine be formed to perform throughout the video. We also used the fact that soca music videos are usually non-narrative in the production of the film.
USE, CHALLENGE and DEVELOP – Particular music genres may have their own music video style and iconography
We challenged and developed the concept of showing women in a certain way, and showed women/girls of different ages and sizes, in non-revealing clothes, dancing, laughing and having fun like normal girls. Their not like the girls that are seen on television.
Question – Two How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?
Digi-pack The digi-pack had to have a Caribbean feel. Which is why we chose the bright, almost-neon colours for the front and inside. We also added a palm tree to the front cover because we felt that this would connote the Caribbean and that this digi-pack would link to the Caribbean. The font for the wording was chosen to give a superstar, name in big, bold lights feel. As if the band are a huge success. I like the digi-pack because it shows the true colours of what Soca stands for. Which is standing out and having fun.
Music Video These are some signature images from the music video. Very bright, summertime, happiness, fun directed. Which is exactly what we wanted to connote. Because the music is very upbeat and carnival orientated we had to try our hardest to show this through our video without involving an actually carnival. Which meant we had to focus on other things that were well known for carnival, such as sunshine, fun, dancing, bright colours etc. We added shots of London because we are from London and we --> -- > wanted to bring the carnival/Caribbean feel to London
A brand is the identity of a specific product, service or business.
Branding is mainly known to be used on products and companies such as McDonalds or Coca-Cola.
Many of the major music artists are known to be ‘branded’. Celebrities such as Lady GaGa, who is famously branded for her crazy, wild, extravagant antics, music videos and outfits. This is known as ‘personal branding’
I felt that when it came to our artist, we should give them a brand that would make them stand out, like Lady GaGa.
Their brand name is ‘Kes the Band’. So we felt that the best way to help them to stick out was through the design of the digi-pack and through the music video. By making the video unlike any video in the mainstream, but still noticeable.
I feel we did this in the music video by putting predominantly a female cast in the video and having a female miming the lyrics to the song despite the band/artist being all males. We also made sure to show females of different ages, sizes, colours etc. in non-revealing clothing. Which is the opposite of what the majority of soca products show. I think the fact that our products are completely out of the norm makes them stand out.
Cont. The front cover of a well-known Soca compilation album The front cover of our digi-pack
Cont. A printscreen shot of a clip from our music video A printscreen shot of a clip from Ricardo Drue’s soca video ‘Car Key”
So how effective do I think the combination of the main product and the ancillary text is?
I feel that the main product and the ancillary text match each other perfectly. They both include bright colouring, and have a Caribbean feeling. The music video is very fun, active and involves a lot of happiness. The digi-pack matches this through the layout, the text and certainly through the colouring used.
This unique differentiation from the norm of Soca products makes our products distinctive, which is why I think our main product and ancillary text is excellent and will be very accomplished.
Question - Three What have you learnt from your audience feedback?
We came up with several relevant questions that wouldn’t be time consuming to fill out and handed the questionnaires out to various members of the public with hopes to find information that could help us to decide on different factors for promoting the video. Questions such as:
Are music video’s important to you?
What do you find is the most successful advertisement for promoting music?
Where do you think is the best place to listen to music?
We asked these questions to find out about our audience and find out what they thought about artist promotion, which would help us on how we would go about promoting the band.
The majority of the replies we got were as we suspected. People said that music was a part of their everyday lifestyle and they listened to it daily. Also we learned that people felt the best way of promoting music was using clubs, where they would listen to such music. Lastly we found that hardly anybody felt that their dress sense is strongly influenced by the music they listen to. Which meant that when promoting the artist, we did not need to focus strongly on creating a brand clothing for the artist that would be influencing the way their fans dressed. Although I feel this would be a good thing to do and would advice it.
I did a interview with a fellow soca lover before going into the production processes of creating the music video. The interviewee told of how they liked to see people having fun and dancing in the videos, especially when it matched the music. They felt that this made them feel happy to see others being happy and it took them to a different mindset.
We also discussed issues to do with representations of women in music videos. They felt that modern video’s portrayed women in a certain way and that they wanted women to be portrayed for being beautiful for things much deeper than their material gains.
Feedback Throughout Production
Once we had done some filming and captured the footage, we found that the original idea given was not the direction we wanted the video to go. After various feedback from people saying they could not understand where the video was going and how it matched the music style we scrapped the idea and came up with a fresh one.
However, again, once we had captured the footage and began editing we and other members of the audience constantly thought that something was missing from the video and that we needed to add something to bring a bit more happiness and flavour to it.
So we did some more shooting, after receiving some careful feedback and guidance and luckily found more vibrant, useful shots. Once we added these in and edited it to our likings we all decided that the video was to a suitable standard and put it onto the website youtube.com and facebook.com in order to get feedback from an audience.
Final Video Positives
After the video had been finished I posted the video onto the social networking site facebook and got feedback from various people. Both soca lovers and non, the majority were very positive. This showed me that our video had achieved the conventions of what soca music video’s are meant to do. Inspire feelings of happiness, unity, love, togetherness etc.
We got comments such as:
‘ I really, really enjoyed watching that video. It looked liked everyone was having fun and the shots of London were well edited. The video looked very natural. Good job everybody’ – Angela
‘ This video is very good, I enjoyed watching it, actually love the ending , very good..’ – Jasmine
‘ Love it! Love it! Love it! Charming infectious fun! Yea!! Go Performers. Top Marks from me! I really really love it.’ - Maureen
Final Video Improvements
However, and gratefully we did get some comments that sought to give the video improvement. Or point out what they felt was missing from it that would’ve helped to make it slightly better. These people also felt that we had improved massively from the original video we had, which helped us to see that from the last video we needed to add more sunshine, cutaways and just general happiness in order to match the music style. The majority of these comments were from non-soca listeners.
‘ I liked the fact that they were taking the mickey and having fun. Loved the bit where the roller-skater was going through the cups. Also I liked when the guys popped up from behind the car and that everyone was taking it in turns to dance. I thought that the parts where the writing flashed up were good too. It would have been good to see boys miming the words of the song as well as the girls. It was great. Hope my comments are off use.’ – Asabi
‘ That looks better from the last time I saw it. I liked that u added the other random shots of London.’ – Aline
‘ Perhaps some party or BBQ or even shots that just show people chillin’ socially could have enhanced the sort of feeling you get from the music but otherwise I agree with Aline ^ and also I like that its just a happy and natural video, very suitable to the song..I like it.’ – Amit
Question - Four How did you use media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
In regards to the planning, research and evaluation stages of production we used different Microsoft software.
For the evaluation we also used Final Cut Pro and filming equipment in order to record and edit members of the group answering evaluation questions and talking about the various equipment we used.
With the construction of the video, we used equipment like a canon filming camera, a tripod (for steady/stable shots), still camera (for taking pictures of locations), and a handheld tripod in order to fulfill tracking shots that needed to be filmed.
When it came to editing the video we went to a editing suite equiped with apple-mac computers and all the editing software we needed such as Final Cut Pro and PhotoShop (PhotoShop was used for the colourful backgrounds with the text)