Pop Diva Performs Revolution
Interview by Mark Dawson
“So Close To Me is a celebration of the magic of spending time with loved ones,” explains Vegas’ leading party diva Kristine W about the next single off her New and Number Ones record. She will perform the song, along with several other dance floor hits from the album, June 14th at Long Island Pride.
Kristine hopes So Close To Me will serve as a reminder to club fans that no matter how many electronic gadgets are invented, there is no stronger connection than real human contact. “People need to turn off their devices,” she says. “Real face-to-face quality time with the people you love is key to a happy life.”
That’s why she chose to include her back-up dancers in the song’s music video. “We’ve been working together for years, traveling the world, performing songs like Land of the Living, One More Try, Stronger and Feel What You Want together. It felt right to include them.”
“My dancers are my support system on the road,” she continues. “We laugh, cry, share ideas… We appreciate the special time we get to spend with one another on the tour bus. Sure, it can be tight at times but it’s allowed us to build such a wonderfully unique and close bond and I wouldn’t change it for anything.”
Are people out of control with technology?
I think we all rely too much on our gadgets. Phones and computers have become a safety glass separating real life from the cyber world we create. We are losing our ability to truly connect with one another.
Do you monitor the amount of time you spend online?
I have the ringer on my phone set to off quite a bit. That way, I can focus on what I’m doing at the moment or really listen to that person who needs me to be totally present.
What one technology could you not live without?
I Skype a lot, especially for business. It’s useful for speaking with producers and remixers in other countries. It has saved me a lot of time I would have spent traveling.
So you’re not anti-technology?
Not at all. Technology is an amazing! It’s only when we overuse and abuse it that it becomes harmful. We shouldn’t substitute technology for real life connection.
How do you get away from the technology?
I hang with my kids and friends. I ride my horses. I write songs and play my instrument. I love to hike, power walk and go to fitness classes and, of course, church. There are lots to do!
You also spend a lot of time on the road. Does it get lonely?
Not at all. Every show is a creative adventure. I’ve been traveling with the same dancers and musicians for almost a decade. They’re my other family.
Do you fight like family?
We don’t argue. That would be counterproductive in a creative environment. But we have had strong conflicting opinions about choreography and show ideas. We are all secure enough in our relationship to be honest about how we feel. In the end, the best ideas win, even if they aren’t mine. (Laughs)
Whose idea was it to release so many remixes of So Close To Me?
We were only going to release the two CDs of remixes but as the single got more popular, we received more offers from DJs and producers. Soon, we had over 30 remixes and I was blown away by how great they all were! I wanted them to be available to the fans. I couldn’t fit them all on two CDS so we had to make a third.
Releasing three albums has to be expensive.
Oh yes. It’s a labor of love really because artists don’t make much money selling physical CDs these days. You have to pay the graphic people, the mastering house, editors who make sure all the info is correct. It’s a lot but I do it for the collectors who prefer their CDs over mp3s. CDs are something tangible. Collectors enjoy the artwork and the overall personalization of having a physical copy.
How did you pay for it?
We were out of money after the second remix album so the third is a literally a gift to fans from everyone on the New and Number One team. I really have to thank the tribe of talented remixers who agreed to make it happen with me.
Do you have a favorite remix?
I love them all. They offer such a wide variety of sounds. It’s truly amazing. But so is the team we have assembled for this project. Every day I count my blessings for the first class people in my life that I am lucky to have so close to me.
For more information, visit KristineW.com