On Sunday, August 19 she captured the 2012 UK Groovy Soca Monarch title in the final of the competition held at the Scala in Kings Cross, London with her popular selection Ready Fa Dis produced by Peter Coppin for the Monstapiece studios in Barbados. Her name is Louise Sterling-Jackman, and she sings under the sobriquet Ms Desire. She made her debut in the soca industry in 2008 with two songs—a groovy track titled Control It and an infectious power track called Move. “I love the feeling Soca music brings,” she says. “Its so carefree and fun. I don’t think any other music in the world has the same effect as Soca music does.” Ms Desire started singing at the tender of seven years, and is no stranger to the stage. Attending the United Kingdom’s most renowned Performing Arts’ schools the New London Performing Arts Centre and Sylvia Young Theatre School, she has some formal training, but more importantly, she possesses the intangible tools of passion, creativity and innovation. As a youth, singing in her church choir afforded her the fundamental skills she needed to begin her musical career. She has since developed and honed those skills in singing and dancing, performing all over the United Kingdom, and was one of the chosen few selected to perform before the Queen for her Golden Jubilee celebrations last June. The Caribbean is like a home away from home to UK-born Ms Desire, her parents being a Barbadian mother and Jamaican father. Spending most of her summer months yearly in the Caribbean, she soon discovered the love for soca, and began putting her song writing and vocal skills to work. It wasn’t long before the world started hearing her soca songs on the radio.
Ms Desire has shared stages with the best of today’s soca artistes, inclusive of Machel Montano, Alison Hinds, Destra Garcia and Edwin Yearwood, but is yet to perform in Trinidad and Tobago. “I have not performed in Trinidad and Tobago…yet!” she stated. “However my song last year was featured on the ‘I am Santana’ movie soundtrack, which was an honour. I am releasing my first-ever contribution to Trinidad Carnival very soon, just waiting on Precision to give me the release date which should be pretty soon, and may be as early as next week. It is a Groovy tune called Give it to Me produced by Precision Productions and written by Justin Ward of Barbados. I recorded the song in July in Trinidad with Kasey Phillips and Ashwin Seegboin. I was very nervous as it was my first time recording in Trinidad, and I know they are the best in the business; but they were lovely. They made me feel at ease and really got the best take of the song.” And how does she feel about traditional Calypso music? “I love traditional calypso music, that’s where it all started. I love Byron Lee and the Dragonaires. I listen to music from Grynner, The Mighty Sparrow, Shadow, SuperBlue, Gabby, the list could go on. I think it is very important for Soca artistes to listen to Calypso as you can learn a lot when it comes to working on your own productions.” Breaking Out, her debut album, showcases Ms Desire’s biggest hits to date, and features distinguished producers such as Peter Coppin, Anderson ‘Blood’ Armstrong and SocaChild 360. Already branded as the Soca Songstress she has set her sights on the album taking the industry to another level, promising to leave the music in the hearts of people worldwide as she takes soca global.
“Soca music is on the brink of going mainstream,” she said, “everyday there is something new that puts Soca on the map. I believe its all about looking in the right places. Many artistes fall into this social media trap and think that Facebook, Twitter and YouTube are the only ways that you can push your music. However, there are so many avenues and audiences that are more than happy to receive Soca music. I mean take MTV for instance. The Real World and MTV Iggy including Soca music in their shows for the world to hear, and that is only just the beginning. Hard work and determination is what I have planned to fly the Soca flag high. Along with creating opportunities for myself, I am not the kind of person to wait for something to come for me. My motto is ‘If opportunities don’t come knocking, build a door.’” Asked in which direction she saw her career going in the next five years, she replied, confidently: “In the next five years I would definitely like to be up there with the best of the best. I would like to see myself having my own band and performing all over the world, taking Soca to places where it’s never been before. I would like to be next top female Soca artiste, and I believe with hard work and perseverance I can definitely achieve that. I am currently working on my sophomore album which is due to be released in June 2013, date to be confirmed. My first album Breaking Out, which was released last November, has done very well, selling more than 2,500 copies worldwide, so I am hoping that this album will be just as or more successful as the last.”Desire’s World is a spin-off from Ms Desire’s weekly internet viral blog, which showcased a behind-the-scenes look at her UK Tour promoting her first album. Airing once a month, Desire’s World is screened on BEN TV (Sky Channel 184), with viewing figures in excess of one million viewers. Desire’s World is the first monthly television show to exclusively promote Soca music and the Caribbean culture in the UK.
Ms Desire’s consistently high quality recordings every year confirm that she is fully committed to the art form and definitely here to stay.