Kristine W: Mary Did You Know?
Named by Billboard Magazine as the #8 Greatest Dance Artist of All Time and the #3 from the Last Decade (trailing only Madonna and Beyoncé), Kristine W has proven herself a lasting talent. Through nearly twenty-five years in music, she has consistency delivered songs that touch hearts and souls and compel bodies to find the mighty groove out on the dance floor. This year, her latest single, Stars, the second single from her soon-to-be-released album, became Kristines 17th #1 single, tying her with Mariah Carey for the sixth-most Billboard #1 dance hits.
In addition, Kristine is making waves in the cabaret circuit, starring alongside her longtime friend, the Emmy-Award winning TV personality, style expert, fashion designer and New York Times best-selling author, Carson Kressley. Together, the dynamic duo are touring the USA, presenting lovely evenings of comedy and jazz music classics in a live stage show theyre calling Straight Up with a Twist.
Kristine W has made a career by focusing on the art and profession of being a singer, songwriter and musician. She enjoys a grassroots mutual affection with fans who revere her voice, appreciate how the aspects of life and emotions she sings about echo their own feelings and experiences.
So how did a ranch-raised small-town girl from rural Washington State end up as the most soulful vocalist in dance music, period, according to All Music Guide? Kristine credits Donna Summer for instilling the love of dance into her.
She had that big gorgeous voice, says Kristine of the late disco music pioneer and superstar. Her voice sounded almost like gospel to me. It was dance with the big background vocals and the layered harmonies and she also has a jazzy overtone to her voice. She was everything I would aspire to: Wow, thats what I want to do. How do I do this?
Kristines mother was also an entertainer. She showed Kristine that a singing career was possible. Mom did it because my Dad passed away when we were babies and it was a matter of survival. Thats what she got a job doing right away and how she was able to keep food on the table for us, Kristine explains.
Her maternal grandmother, who helped raise Kristine and her four siblings, was a classical violinist who was struck by lightning One of the few people to survive that, Kristine notes which threw her arms out of their shoulder sockets. After they were wired back in place, she could no longer play the violin, so she taught herself how to play the guitar set in her lap. It just showed me the power of music because she continued to be musical, and figured out ways to adapt to her situation. She was an amazing woman.
Kristines paternal grandfather was a rancher and competitive horseman. He was like John Wayne. Her late father was a rodeo champion and country music singer. I had a lot of inspirational people around and nurturing me. I was blessed, she says of her childhood.
From almost the time she could walk Kristine was singing in church, talent contests and local Oprys. The music she heard ranged from the sophisticated jazz her mother sang to hard-core country to the classical warhorses and all between, plus the pop music on the radio. When she first heard Summer, Kristine saw how all she was learning was also a part of her icons training and background.
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