Caribbean countries are punching way above their weight in terms of cultural output, and the rest of the world is paying attention. So, too, should the Caribbean. So said Josanne Leonard, director of Miribai Communications. She is the scout for SONY MUSIC/SYCO ENTERTAINMENT UK, which is searching for a young male Caribbean pop artist for a record deal. This search is for anyone with a great voice, passion for music and personality who is ready for a career in the music business. Leonard, from Trinidad and Tobago, said: “It’s a very exciting opportunity for a young man in his late teens to mid-20s. Rihanna has put Barbados on the map and, by extension, the region.” The group wants to attract talent that may be totally undiscovered, so the gifted young guys in Barbados came out to give it a shot at the Open Mic session at the Walcott Warner Theatre, Errol Barrow Centre for Creative Imagination, Cave Hill Campus recently. “The Caribbean has a long, rich legacy of creative talent . . . . Everybody’s looking for the next big thing and it makes sense for the next big voice or talent to come from the English-speaking region,” said the media and entertainment consultant. Leonard has also done the Open Mic in Trinidad and Jamaica. “I have been trying to include, ambitiously, the entire Caribbean . . . . Just need one to make it.” The scout said she was really pleased and surprised at the talent. “I am hoping those back in the UK like what they hear. . . .” Many aspiring singers sent music links, electronic press kits (EPKs), demos and bios with a head shot were sent via email and those who didn’t have those at their disposals came out to audition. About 35 people were at the Open Mic and some were well known faces, such as Teen Talent’s David Howard, Nyron, Altek and Maloney from the group Most Wanted, and National Independence Festival Of Creative Arts winner Joshua Gay. Sony Music Entertainment is a global record music company with a roster that includes the works of a broad array of international superstars such as Alicia Keys, Carrie Underwood and the late Michael Jackson.