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Named one of the top three dance artists of the decade by Billboard Magazine, Kristine W’s latest single pays homage to her musical hero, Donna Summer. “On the Radio,” the third release from her Straight Up with a Twist album (Fly Again Music), is the first jazz recording of Summer’s disco smash. The dreamy lounge-ready arrangement, cut live in a studio with Kristine and a four-piece brass band, has become a runaway hit on smooth jazz stations across America.

“I have been a huge fan of Donna Summer since I was little girl,” says Kristine, whose 16 #1s ties Mariah Carey for most consecutive #1 Billboard club play hits. Her last dance album, The Power of Music, yielded seven #1s.

“My new jazz projects are exciting because they allow me to be heard during the chilled moments in life,” she continues. “Music is supposed to take people on a journey, and that’s exactly what I’m creating on Straight Up with a Twist.”

Her version of “On the Radio” has a funky Latin feel to it. The disco beats and musical accompaniment have been stripped, allowing the spiritually moving lyrics to take center stage while Kristine’s passionate vocals take the song to a new romantic depth.

Hear for yourself when Kristine W performs “On the Radio” and all her jazz hits live at the grand opening of XL Cabaret Friday, February 3, with an encore show Saturday, February 4.

Why did you decide to make a jazz version of “On the Radio”?
I have been a huge fan of Donna Summer’s for as long as I can remember. “On The Radio” was especially significant to me because it is about finding your lost love through the radio. For a musician, what’s more romantic than that?

Would you say that Donna Summer has influenced your career?
Of course! Donna Summer was the first face of dance music. It was called Disco back then. We call it house today. But without her contribution, today’s dance floor would not be the same.

How would you describe your version of “On the Radio”?
The band and I cut it live together in the studio. It’s a raw sound with a funky Latin feel. You can really hear the story because it’s stripped down musically.

Does the main message of the song remain the same?
Oh yes. In both, the message is that anything in life is possible.

Speaking about radio, how do you feel about today’s radio?
There is not enough diversity in radio. All the stations are playing the same five artists.

Is today’s radio supporting dance music?
The dance stations play dance remixes by Top 40 artists. They’re not playing what we’re hearing in clubs. Dance music is fun and happy and man, we need it now more than ever. Taking our problems to the dance floor can really help us get through these tough times.

Would you say that Donna Summer has influenced your career?
Of course! Donna Summer was the first face of dance music. It was called Disco back then. We call it house today. But without her contribution, today’s dance floor would not be the same.

How would you describe your version of “On the Radio”?
The band and I cut it live together in the studio. It’s a raw sound with a funky Latin feel. You can really hear the story because it’s stripped down musically.

Does the main message of the song remain the same?
Oh yes. In both, the message is that anything in life is possible.

Speaking about radio, how do you feel about today’s radio?
There is not enough diversity in radio. All the stations are playing the same five artists.

Is today’s radio supporting dance music?
The dance stations play dance remixes by Top 40 artists. They’re not playing what we’re hearing in clubs. Dance music is fun and happy and man, we need it now more than ever. Taking our problems to the dance floor can really help us get through these tough times.

– By Arielle Suchow

Kristine W performs her jazz hits at the grand opening of XL Cabaret (512 W 42nd St between 10th & 11th Aves)
Friday, February 3 & Saturday, February 4. Show begins 8 p.m. sharp! Seating: $20. For tickets, visit: xlnightclub.com

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