Words by Kevin Lyttle, as told to Jesse Serwer
It’s hard to believe but this month marks 10 years since Kevin Lyttle’s “Turn Me On” entered the Top 10 on the Billbord singles charts, culminating its rise from local carnival hit in St. Vincent to ubiquitous international smash. But its history goes back far earlier.
Even considering the slow pace with which it usually takes for Caribbean songs to rise to the pop charts, “Turn Me On” had a remarkably long-winded rise. The track was written and recorded in early 2001 for release at Vincy Mas that summer, making its way across the Caribbean in time to impact Trinidad Carnival the following winter. It had already been a hit in Canada for over a year and reached No. 1 in Holland when Atlantic Records signed Lyttle and officially released “Turn Me On” as a single featuring Spragga Benz in September 2003. Nearly a year, and two more music videos. later (a now forgotten first clip was shot in St. Vincent back in ’01), it peaked at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles charts, earning Lyttle a place on year-end hit lists and, a few years later, VH-1’s one-hit winder countdown.
On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of “Turn Me On”’s (as well as of Lyttle’s self-titled debut, which featured background vocals from a pre-fame Trey Songz), we spoke to Kevin Lyttle about his unlikely worldwide hit. Click here to read what he had to say.