“Trinidad” is the refrain to “What’s Your Name”, the lit Soca anthem launched recently by the New York-based artiste Julius (Rodney Julius). “It’s a powerful patriotic song… and it will still have you going in a fete,” said Julius on his trip home to Trinidad and Tobago in October.
“When Trinidadians the world over listen to this song, it must ignite them to come home for 2020 Carnival, and walk bare foot on the beach in Tobago and eat some doubles, hug up Granny and pelt a mango. It must create that spirit of euphoria, and spirit of Trinidad and Tobago. “What’s Your Name” is a love song dedicated to Trinidad and Tobago.
“We have a lot of people invested in this project,” Julius said. The song is co-written by Julius and Ian ‘Fojo” Corbin. Rebel Musik produced it, Darren Gilbert was the arranger, Fojo was the vocal producer. And Parry Jack mixed and mastered it. Clyde Barrow played live guitar and the brass licks on the track; Larry Marsden also played guitar and IBA played bass. “We were sitting on it for months, trying to get it as perfect as we could,” Julius said.
Julius is noted as “Soca royalty,” as he rapped on the famous David Rudder / GB song “The Future Belongs to Me” when he was just a kid. He was a solo artist, becoming a frontline singer with the big East Coast Caribbean band Impack2, and his own band 7IghQ (pronounced ‘Seven IQ’) before taking a hiatus from the stage to do vocal training. He jumped back into Soca a couple of years ago and since then Julius has been hitting with new music. “Good Morning Trinidad”, another patriotic song, is one of those 2018 releases and it’s still getting attention. But while that song laments the crime epidemic in T&T, “What’s Your Name” is a joyful, flirtatious party song.
Julius was in Trinidad for the funeral of his beloved grandfather, Joel Vincent, who helped raise him in Sea Lots, Port of Spain. “He always was an advocator for us to do better, never wanted to see us liming on the block, always encouraging educating yourself and pushing the envelope.”
In the spirit of his grandfather, Julius took the opportunity to launch the new single on T&T Radio Network while he was home. “I already planned to come in November to release the song. Knowing him and his personality and what he stood for, he would have wanted me to do this even though it’s in the midst of celebrating his life. He would want me to do it, to go out and do what you have to do.”