Diplo on Island Parties in Trinidad and Tobago

A travel diary from Diplo, the musician and D.J., as he ventures through the Caribbean paradise during its famous party season. He shares his personal photographs and a travel-journal entry about how to survive Carnival, what the Justin Bieber of the islands is like onstage, and the sex-war paradox of soca-music dancing.

By Diplo

Photographs by Shane McCauley

Should I play this Harry Belafonte mash-up?

Machel brought in confetti cannons for a two-song performance—that’s l

The crowd shows solidarity for Machel’s cause to become the soca monarch and rule all the Trinidadian constituencies worldwide for two years.

Sometimes wining takes serious, serious concentration—the woman on on the left is quite stunning.

Hard to balance, but apparently this was the best view of the Machel concert.

Something about these Indian girls that just makes me a wee bit uncomfortable.


Apparently the best place for your shirt is in your mouth during the show.

I decided that I must eat doubles at four a.m., after my show and some club-hopping, but I didn’t take into consideration the spices of street chickpeas.

Posing in front of the Mitsubishi.

This is the biggest dubstep-and-electro fan in all of Trinidad and Tobago.

We snapped a quick photo of Anya Ayoung-Chee, the winner of Ms. Universe Trinidad in 2008. In 2010, she was tied up in a huge sex-tape scandal that she ended up owning and using to her advantage. She had a good time at our show.

Just some fun-loving guys in the parking lot.

On the country roads, the landscape is breathtaking. The graffiti on the left wall says, “Justic

We spent some time at the Temple in the Sea in Waterloo; these prayer flags were breathtaking. Our guide told us that West Indian Hindu is a sort of 150-year time capsule of the religion that takes things to a level you don’t find in the homeland.

This is where I did an awkward Q&A, after my film ran 40 minutes over its run time due to condensation on the projector—caused by the unexpectedly large crowd. We managed to get all the way through, and the crowd’s reaction was positive.

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