Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 15th 2014 Contents 4 Friday, August 15, 2014 • Issue 153
The top ten finalists for the
Face of T&T (FOTT) have been
revealed. Amanda Chedu,
Amanda Gosein, Anastasia
Tomkin, Avionne Gloudon,
Daniella Seebaran, Gabrielle
Solomon, Kayla Bostic, Rebeca
Aird, Ria Highley, Vanessa Man-
garoo will be formally presented
to the public at a media launch
on Tuesday at Stechers Fine Gift
Stores, Long Circular Mall.
With the slogan "Face the indus-
try, Face the intensity, Face of
T&T!" this project's central focus is
on the face of contestants, and is
geared towards exposing many
faces of varying ages, ethnicities,
lifestyle and geographical composi-
FOTT was conceptualised and
created by Kirk Thomas, an award-
winning, beauty professional
whose extensive client portfolio in-
cludes Nicki Minaj, Alison Hinds
and The Tyra Banks Show. The
mission of the competition is to
break barriers in highlighting the
often-understated importance and
perceptions of beauty to the local
fashion, entertainment and adver-
The FOTT Executive also in-
cludes photographer Gary Jordan,
fashion runway coach and stylist
Nigel Celestine, marketing and
event consultant Kristy Ramnarine
and media and public relations
Specialist Tenille Clarke.
If Meghan Trainor had her way, soca
would be starring on her debut album.
And even though Epic Records didn't go
for it when she signed her deal in Febru-
ary, she still managed to get some soca
inflections in her music, she said.
Local audiences will have to wait till later
this year to hear the soca influences when
she launches her EP, Title, and her so far un-
named full-length album in November and
Trainor, in case you don't know, is a new
artist currently making waves on the charts
with her debut single All About That Bass.
The song is currently number one in iTunes
video, number eight on Billboard and number
one in Australia and New Zealand. On
YouTube, the video has over 14 million views.
So what does a 20-year-old from Nan-
tucket, Massachusetts, and Nashville, on the
verge of pop stardom, know about soca?
Between the ages of 13 and 16, Trainor
was actually part of Island Fusion, a soca
band fronted by her aunt Lisa and uncle-in-
law Burton Toney. Toney is a former lead vo-
calist with Atlantik alongside Destra Garcia.
"When Burton joined my family he taught
us everything," she said. "At first it (soca)
sounded like vacation music because we
went there (Trinidad) for vacation," she said
of her first taste of soca.
Toney taught her more than just apprecia-
tion of the music, the always-energetic per-
former also taught Trainor stage presence.
"Burton was a star and I wanted to be like
that. He taught me presence on stage, talking to
the crowd and confidence, I owe him everything.
I always call him for a pep talk. I had him come
for the Kelly and Michael show last Thursday. I
wanted him there for the first big thing I did,"
she said of her relationship with Toney.
Trainor is currently doing the TV talk show
circuit since the song is already a radio hit
she said. That she has had to skip that part
of the development process was scary but
she has relied on her uncle for support.
Trainor said while performing in the band,
her aunt and uncle always told her she was a
star. "I wouldn't believe it cause I didn't look
like Rihanna. I thought I would be really hot
at 25," she said laughing. Her song, All About
that Bass, co-written by Kevin Kadish, is an
empowerment song for the curvaceous girls.
Trainor said she always dealt with self-ac-
ceptance and when she heard the title of the
song, she immediately thought of writing a
fun song celebrating those with a little extra
junk in the trunk. The song was an instant hit
with CEO of Epic Records, LA Reid, who, she
recalled, was snapping his fingers and nod-
ding his head when she auditioned for him
and about 30 executives.
Trainor's voice and the music are reminis-
cent of the doo-wop style the late Amy
Winehouse made popular.
"I grew up listening to doo wop, 50s stuff,
Frank Sinatra, Earth, Wind and Fire and since I
was seven, I have been listening to soca," said
Trainor, revealing that when she was signed
to her label she told them she was a soca star.
"One of my biggest goals is to bring soca to
America," she said, expressing a desire to col-
laborate with Kees and Machel Montano.
"I love Kees' style. I like Patrice Roberts;
she has awesome songs. I love Destra songs
and Bunji too. Kees is a huge star that can
cross over. I want to collaborate with him so
bad. Me and my Aunty Lisa have dance par-
ties and we dance to Machel and Kees all the
time," she said.
Trainor promises that once she is at a level
where she can do what she wants soca will
definitely make it to her album.
"I will do soca and mess people up," she
• Makeup: Kirk Thomas for
L'Oréal Paris - Trinidad & Tobago
• Hair: Bally
• Photography: Kerron Riley
• Styling: Nigel Celestine
• Costume pieces:
• Swimsuits and Coverups:
• Dresses: NOOR
• Jewelry: Anoushka by Ilmes for
Stechers Fine Gift Stores
Meghan with her Uncle,
soca singer Burton Toney.
Links Archive August 14th 2014 August 16th 2014 Navigation Previous Page Next Page