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Soca fraternity mourns the death of Kes the Band’s Ricky Bobby

Ricardo Rameshwar aka Ricky BobbyRicardo Rameshwar aka Ricky Bobby

Ricardo Rameshwar’s passing on Monday Tuesday sent shockwaves through the music fraternity in Trinidad and Tobago and the Caribbean.

Rameshwar, who was the musical director and lead keyboardist of Kes the Band since 2012, died on Tuesday morning following an asthma attack.

He was a well-known figure in the Caribbean music scene, starting in gospel music and moving to soca where he worked with Destra Garcia in Atlantik and later as her musical director in her band Bakanal.

Rameshwar was also a well-known producer, having worked as one half of the Madmen Productions team alongside Johann Seaton. Together they produced songs such as AOA (Machel Montano) and Show Me Where Yuh From (Kes the Band).

With the news of his passing, many took to social media to pay their tributes to the musician and father of three. We also spoke to those who worked closely with him and considered him to be more than a friend.

Destra Garcia

Rameshwar became friends with Destra Garcia’s fiancée Brian Morris when he worked at Chines Laundry’s Link Up studio. That was where he was introduced to Destra and convinced Atlantik to hire her as a frontline vocalist.

“We became really close, we were really good friends,” she recalled of their relationship.

She said she and Ricky Bobby, as Rameshwar was popularly known, worked closely together to decide on how to keep the performances young, fresh and hip when she sang alongside Ronne McIntosh and Burton Toney.

When she became the lone vocalist in the band, he helped her to make the transition as a solo performer. As her own musical director, Rameshwar assisted her with her gospel songs, which she included on every album. She said even after he left to work for Kes the Band, he provided accompaniment whenever she had to sing at a funeral.

She said Rameshwar would always hang out at her house and loved to cook. He maintained a strong friendship with Morris, who is also an asthma sufferer. She said they last spoke to Rameshwar on Sunday.

“We were always really close. This hit me really hard, he was a brother for real,” Garcia said.


Johann Seaton, Madmen Productions/Ultimate Rejects

Ricky was one of the greatest persons you could interact with, no one has anything bad to say about him, he is the light in the room,” said Johann Seaton, who worked with Rameshwar as Madmen Productions.

Reeling from the death of his close friend, who was the best man at his wedding, Seaton said Rameshwar taught him every single thing he knows today.

He revealed that they had begun working together again recently as Madmen. They did a song for Kes the Band which was due to be released soon.

He said the last time they worked together was to produce Kes the Band’s “People”.


Teddyson John via Instagram

“I don’t even know what to say or feel. I’m so lost for words. This was not the news I was expecting today….. Thank you Ricky for all our conversations and encouragement, thank u for always showing me love and bringing pure vibes at rehearsals in the bandroom @kesthebandofficial . To Kes and the team please accept my condolences, I know this is a hard pill to swallow. RIP Ricky. Heaven just gained an amazing Musical Director.


Edwin Yearwood via Instagram

“Soca music took a huge blow! I'm stunned! Ricky thank you for everything over the years! The love for soca was infectious on and off stage you were and are a true Trinidadian Ambassador of the highest caliber! Thank you for all of your encouragement and support we the soca movement will never forget you! Rest my friend in peace! Teach them to strum up there bro!”

Machel Montano via Instagram

Rest In Peace Ricky Fly high fellow Sagi My deepest condolences to his family, friends and all the teams who were blessed by his joy, laughter and music. He will be missed.

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