What do Machel Montano,Alison Hinds and Bunji Garlin all have in common?...Soca duets with Walker. Walker Hornung(Q-South and The Brotherhood of the Grape) is an American singer/songwriter with an honorary Trinidadian passport. Walker has shared the stage with legends in Caribbean music including those mentioned above and many more. In 1998 his debut Rock/Soca with Machel and Xtatik gave him a unique place in the History of Trinidad's Soca music and opened the door to a hybrid sound that is now often imitated but never repeated. His love of Soca music and the people of Trinidad are evident in each individual track.
(From Ian of Barbados wrote)
I remember in the early 80's when Sting was in the Police and people were shocked how a white man was doing reggae even though Eric Clapton gave Bob Marley one of his earliest # 1's by remaking "I Shot The Sheriff" in the 70's and in the same era, Barbra Streisand had a Top Five hit with "Guava Jelly," yet here was a full Caucasian group attempting a [black] Jamaican artform a decade later and there was a bit of a stir.
The same Eric Clapton apart from nodding to reggae, also was totally entranced with the blues (as were many British artists like John Mayhew, Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin), but when New Jersey's Billy Hector came to Barbados about two years ago and was playing at Crock's Den, there were some Bajans who asked why is it that a white man is looking to do a black artform?
Conversely, if a black group wants to do Rock/Alternative or folk music, there is a hidden undercurrent that "they" have sold out, yet Leontyne Price, Kathleen Battle and other black divas of the opera (where the word has its genuine value, albeit a diva is not too pleasant a person in the search for excellence) are considered highly respected members of their community if not worldwide – can you relate? As Prince would say…
Why am I talking about this? Barbados has no problems right? That is another column and in fact, series of columns… I talked about "white" reggae and "white" blues to lead into another area where some Caucasian people are expanding their horizons – Soca!
Ignoring your collective gasps, the man under review has done extensive work with Machel Montano, Alison Hinds and Bunji Garlin.
He started off in a rock group known as "Brotherhood Of The Grape" – once he met Trinidad, apparently he fell in love and hasn't really wanted to look back.
Walker Hornung has appeared at Trinidad's Carnival on more than one occasion, as well as at Madison Square Garden, Woodstock '95 among other grand or intimate venues.
Don't judge or just take my word for it go and listen for yourself!