After years of being in the background, musician Derwin Vallie has decided to step into the limelight with the release of his first single, a love song entitled Deep. The song is the first installment of a three- part project out of his Loreless Folk Production studio and was done in collaboration with Lyndon “Stonze” Livingstone’s Razorshop Studio. The mix was done by Giandre Diaz of The Myth Lab Studio. According to Vallie the song has so far generated a positive response from the public, especially from the ladies and was voted to the number one spot on The Street 91.9FM Indigenous Chart. The song has also been receiving airplay on Hot 105 in Cayman Islands and Rainbow FM in Anguilla. He also appeard on Synergy on Thursday night. “Everyone is going to have his/her own perception of the song. But because of our nature as Trinidadians people are going to understand it. As a composer I wanted to show the importance of being in love with someone who inspires you to be the best; a person who encourages you to keep pushing for greatness. Basically it’s a song that gives props to women who motivate their partners to be better,” said Vallie.
The trilogy will be released in conjunction with videos that, in the end, would tell one story. The second and third parts are due to be out in September and November respectively. The first video will explore local folklore as its theme. Vallie has always considered himself to be an innovator and keeps pushing himself to keep his ideas fresh. “I’ve never accepted the notion that as a Trinbagonian musician you have to stay in the box. In the 80s I was mixing reggae and calypso and some people didn’t like what I was doing because it was just too strange at the time. It’s now a common thing to fuse music. I don’t need to stick to the same three chords. I’m at a point where things are ripe. I’ve done my homework and I have a lot of material,” said Vallie who has played in bands such as Machel Montano’s Pranasonic Xpress, Upstream with OC Blackman. He was a member of Shaman, Trinidad’s first reggae band as keyboardist and vocalist, providing keyboards and background vocals for live stage performances for stars such as Tony Rebel, Cutty Ranks, Gregory Isaacs, Dirtsman, Supa Cat and Junior Demus. He even opened for Shabba Ranks as a member of Shaman, along with Montano and Xtatik, for Shabba’s maiden performance in Trinidad in 1990.
After a stint with a variety of cruise ships in the Florida-based cruise ship industry as a musician and vocalist, Vallie returned to join Xtatik as a keyboardist, composer and producer. He worked on four of the band’s albums, Any Minute Now (1999), Here Comes the Band 2000, Same High 2001 and On the Cusp (2002). Post-Xtatik, he continued to rack up an impressive résumé, composing and producing Saucy Baby for Denise Belfon, Sassiness for Destra Garcia, and Boom Boom Tonic for Alison Hinds as well as producing “Fiery” for Bunji Garlin, with which he won the Soca Monarch title. “I’ve been fortunate to work with the big names locally, regionally and with some interesting people internationally. Life is a series of experiences and it adds value to your life. Working with Machel taught me discipline, hard work and self-belief. Every experience is about learning and developing and it has shaped my own perception of the music I create,” said Vallie. Despite his vast experience on the music scene he still considers himself a new artiste and looks forward with excitement to see where this new journey will take him. “This should be interesting; I’m accustomed to being in the background. I love what I do …I go to bed at night and I can’t wait to get up in the morning to do it again,” he said.