Waterstreet Boyz, Caribbean singers, Riddim Tribe show 'We Got This'
Some of the singers featured on We Got This
One message - that is the connecting string behind the new track 'We Got This' penned by Waterstreet Boyz and featuring 25 voices from 14 countries.
COVID-19, curfew restrictions, closed borders and social distancing have all caused artistes to push their creative boundaries even further. This disease has had a severe impact on the creative arts, the artistes, the dancers, songwriters and has impacted some of their biggest stages and platforms with the cancellation of several island festivals and carnivals around the region.
So how did they manage to come together to make this inspirational track without physically coming together?
Understanding that music can cross waters and bridge spaces even in a time of a health crisis, Waterstreet Boyz took the initiative to create the vessel and channel.
"I think it was more of a need. We sensed a need and a void and that void needed to be filled. And what greater time than this when everyone is experiencing the same thing than to seek to bring the region together through something universal - that thing being music," explained Webster.
The track was written in a 10-hour period.
Connecting with over 25 different singers across the region the duo has been able to create a unifying message when hope is very much a necessity.
Jones said: "Hope is very important during dark times when there seems to be no end. I truly believe that once people have hope they will be buoyed to do the right things for us to get past this."
Award-winning producer Chris Allman worked alongside the duo from his Slam Home Studio, instead of his regular Slam City Studios because he too is making musical magic from within quarantine and under curfew in Barbados. Barbados' contingent amongst the bevvy of Caribbean talent included Mahalia of 2 Mile Hill, Rochelle, Khiomal, Shontelle Layne and Marzville.
Speaking about the onboarding process, Jones said: "Most of the voices on the song quickly agreed to do it.
"The recording process presented its own challenges because of COVID-19 regulations and people had to record on their phones, so there was a lot of back and forth and some tedious work."
But the final product does not show any of the challenges or the hiccups as the voices gel, meld and even harmonised at points.
We Got This from Waterstreet Boyz
Other Caribbean acts involved were College Boy Jesse from Trinidad, Claudette Peters from Antigua, Tasha Peltier from Dominica, Motto from St Lucia, Karisa Willett from St Kitts, Shaunelle Mckenzie from St. Vincent, Queen B from Anguilla, Timeka Marshall from Guyana, Jadine from Monserrat, Adrian Dutchin from Guyana, Adana from Tobago, Devine Songs from Dominica, Victor O from Martinique, Arthur from St Lucia, Tara Layne from The Bahamas, Drew Dean from Nevis, NISA from Trinidad, Josh Berkley from Grenada and Kaay Jones from Jamaica.
"The varying tones, textures, and accents of the voices came together beautifully to underscore the need for all walks of life to unify in the battle against COVID-19... From the Caribbean connection to the rest of the region - WE GOT THIS!" said Jones.
The video also includes Barbados' very own Riddim Tribe Dancers who added their incredible flair and talents to the project's visual elements.
Aisha Comissiong of Riddim Tribe told Loop:
"When Cheyne reached out about our participation, the answer was a resounding 'Yes'. An anthem that promotes unity amongst our Caribbean brothers and sisters? And that reinforces the strength and commitment we have to conquer this virus? We definitely replied with 'We got this!'"
But that's not all, Comissiong revealed, "We're hoping to execute something dance-wise on a larger scale to the song because that is how inspiring and motivational it is. It brought the regional artists together in a meaningful way and we're hoping that it can do the same for dancers."
The video was put together by Selwyn Browne of Vibe Barbados.
Offering their perspectives on how they were impacted by the coronavirus disease 2019 the duo felt very optimistic and were still able to tap into their creative spaces despite the obvious loss of revenue the virus has caused them and many other artists.
Webster shared: "From an economic perspective, yes there has been an economic impact, but everything doesn't boil down to money. In this situation, I think we have done some of our best work and we have been extremely creative. Working on a number of different projects and talking back and forth and allowing our creativity right now to flourish."
With so many other artists locally, regionally and internationally using this period to inspire others with varied lockdown concerts and new songs to lift spirits, 'We Got This' comes along as a very strong dose of much-needed inspiration during this fight against COVID-19.