Dance with Me
Drew's Musical Journey Andrew Charles was born to lift spirits through the magic of music. The Grenada native set his sights on a music career at age nine, when he wrote, "Jammin," his debut soca composition. "Drew," as he's widely known, knew even then, that one day he'd perform his music onstage with his own band. In 1989, Drew's family moved to the United States, bringing with them their cultural heritage and the island rhythms as familiar as their own heartbeats. At Brooklyn's Ditmas Jr. High, and later at Grady High School, he continued to nurture his talent and after graduation he came together with other aspiring musicians to form Spice 1 Crew in 1996. The group quickly became a popular neighborhood fixture, performing at the local Grenada Independence Day celebration as well as at numerous talent showcases and charitable events. Drew was in his element, waking each day eager to make music and inspired by the work of artists such as Beres Hammond, Third World, R. Kelly and Machel Montano. Spice 1 Crew outgrew it's own success and under the leadership of Johnny Adams and the management of Shawn "Roots" Mitchell, reformed as The Request Band, with Drew on lead vocals. The Request Band, soon in demand, was thrilled to open for and perform with various established artists and bands, including: Krosfyah, Alison Hinds, Xtatik, The Mighty Sparrow, Burning Flames and others. The time had come to take the next step. In the year 2000 The Request Band released it's first recording, Is We, featuring eight tracks, seven written and sung by Drew. The varied compositions provided fans with new favorites and attracted a wider audience for Drew's musical vision. The track "Life Sentence," with it's lament of a man arrested for winin', soon became a radio and dance party hit. The Request Band was asked to take it's soca music mission on the road and subsequently performed at Miami Carnival, in Washington D.C. and various states in the U.S. and in Montreal, Canada. Drew took a break from the band in 2003 to focus on family. He did not abandon his first love, however, but continued to write songs and to perform, from time to time, at various venues with local bands. In 2005, Drew made the decision to pursue his music career once again. He returned to the industry as a solo artist under the management of Stage One Productions, another Adams and Mitchell collaboration. He is featured on two tracks on the 2005 compilation CD, Soca Stage and will soon release his new single, "Dance with Me," featuring Anna Assing, lead vocalist for Island Vibes, an acclaimed Trinidad-based band. Clearly, Drew's talent lies not only in making sweet-hot soca, but also in making his musical dreams come true.