PRESS RELEASE – As Claudia Edward and her band Naked Chords get ready for the St. Lucia Jazz and Arts Festival 2016, they would like to take the opportunity to introduce the band to the world – the individuals that make Alternative Rock music in St. Lucia sound so awesome!
Benton Jules: Keyboardist
Benton was raised in a quaint community called Odsan in Saint Lucia and was exposed to music since his early childhood years due to his father’s musical background and having a greater understanding around 10 years of age began to seriously pursue music.
To date, Mr. Jules has accumulated at least twenty (20) years of experience in the entertainment circle. From playing the drums in church in his earlier years whilst attending school, to attending the Saint Lucia School of Music where he honed his reading and writing music abilities, and later learning the piano Mr. Jules has never stopped pursuing his musical dreams.
When satisfied with his accomplishments at the school of music he then went on to perform with the Saint Lucia Royal Academy police band where he worked with some of the finest musicians playing tuba, drums, and percussion. Benton has had the privilege to perform at a number of shows and festivals around the island like Calypso stage, Soca stage, Saint Lucia Jazz Festival just to name a few and has also performed at most of the hotels and schools on island.
After serving five (5) years with the police band he then went on to join the entertainment scene on the cruise ship having performed on cruise ships such as the Carnival and celebrity cruise ships. He has played alongside International Artists such as The Mighty Sparrow as well as alongside some of Saint Lucia’s finest musicians: Barbara Cadet, Mr. Carl Gustave, Rob Zi Taylor, Mr. Teddyson John and now completes the band Naked Chords.
KC Aurelien: Bassist
Kc Aurelien is a self-taught musician who started in church firstly and mainly played keyboards. He moved on to rhythm/lead guitar and drums. He also played a Bass Steel Pan. He did music part – time for a while since he had the vision of getting into business for myself. However he started playing professionally in 2007 . He is 9 years young in the business, started off playing with Alpha, former Party and Road March Monarch, then Vert-X with Derek Yarde.. then forming DYP with Derek Yarde; moved on to Phaze Band, TEM,Rob Zii Taylor, played with Shayne Ross; Grammacks New Generation of Dominica/St.Lucia collaboration with Jeff Joseph (Deceased).
After those stints, he has played for Teddyson John,Evalucian Band and Claudia Edward (Naked Chords). The events he has participated in spans from Opening of St.Lucia Carnival, Opening of St.Lucia Jazz, Soca Monarch, Heineken Kalalu Festival, U4RIA, Carriacou Maroon and Strings Fest, ARC Festival, Soufriere Creole Jazz, Jazz on the Square, Mainstage St.Lucia Jazz, Stanley’s Private Jazz Party and so much more.
Theo ‘Toffee’ Joseph: Lead Guituarist
‘Toffee’ started playing music in the late eighties with a band called Uprising Original ,then ventured on to the cruise ships where he spent 15 years as a band leader, developing his skills in playing, performing and entertaining. Since being back he created the Prolific Reggae Band, played with some of the great St Lucian performers, such as Rob “Zi”Tailor, Babara Cadet just to mention a couple. Now he is very proud to be the lead guitarist for the band Naked Chords and the incomparable Claudia Edward.
Randolph Henry: Drummer
Randolph first started playing drums as a youngster in church and joined his first band in 1993. He too has gained experience working on the cruise ship circuit, honing his skills as a drummer.
He has worked with a number of bands and artists over the years. His real passion is Art and it was quite a battle choosing between Art and Music but Music seemed to have won. He has intentions on pursuing Art once again, but in the meantime his incomparable love for music and performing with Naked Chords is proving to be quite enjoyable.
Shem Meluce: Backup Vocalist
Shem is a singer, songwriter and musician. He became interested in music as early as eight years old in Church. A natural born talent, he discovered his skills as a songwriter when he wrote his first song, which was sung by a local church group at a Christmas event.
He later composed songs for weddings, dedications, competitions, baptismal, and graduation ceremonies locally, regionally and internationally. He blends smooth vocals with conscious lyrics to produce a unique style of gospel music. His message is one of redemption, highlighting both social and spiritual issues that affect today’s generation. It is one that expresses his passion for the people and spreading the good news as it motivates, comforts and encourages faith in God.
His sound; timeless, skillfully weaving vibrato with melodic falsettos backed by Reggae, acoustic and Zouk rhythms. He has since produced one album and has worked with home grown producers such as Werner ‘Semi’ Francis of Fourya Studio, Christopher Neil of Big As Life studio, Marvin St. Ange of Truevine Reords, Shomari Maxwell of Sweetnotes Studio, Benton Jules of I productions and Danyl Daniel of Daniels Den to name a few.
In the year 2014 Shem was nominated in four categories at the annual Caribbean Marlin awards held in the Bahamas. Those categories include Album of the year, Song of the year, Contemporary Vocal Performance of the Year-Duo/Group and Pop Recording of the year of which Shem is the successful winner for the year 2014.
Look out for Claudia and her talented band Naked Chords for this year’s St. Lucia Jazz and Arts Festival 2016.