Kristine W is riding dance floors full speed ahead this season with her new single, “Can’t Look Back”, the first release from her upcoming album. Produced by James Hurr, one of the masters of UK House, the song is a lush, soulful club groove, made even more powerful with its message of rising up and appreciating the day. It was inspired by the passings of Kristine’s mother and sister. She says she found solace through writing the song and hopes by sharing “Can’t Look Back” now with the world that it helps those experiencing similar loss to move forward too.
You have faced some big personal challenges these past few years.
Kristine W: My older sister Viki passed away from colon cancer two years ago. None of the family could believe that she died from a cancer that was treatable. I was grieving my sister and trying to be there for my mom, but I intuitively knew that she was not going to survive the loss of her oldest daughter and best friend. Mom passed away due to complications from a stroke last year. These two angels were always on either side of me, cheering me on. It has been very difficult staying motivated without them. I can’t believe they are both gone. Somedays, I experience a crippling grief. At shows, I have had the opportunity to meet others experiencing similar loss. We hug and cry together over our lost ones. Thankfully, I am blessed with my music. It has been a lifeline.
What have you learned about yourself and your ability to overcome obstacles?
KW: I have learned that God gives his toughest battles to his strongest soldiers. I try to be brave and remember how much my mother and sister contributed to my success. I owe it to them to push forward.
When did you begin the work on “Can’t Look Back”?
KW: Tony (Moran) sent me the first draft of the track two years ago. It was very sparse at the time, but I could tell that it had a magic to it. I started playing around with it, writing and rewriting. Tony didn’t like the first verse melody I presented to him, but he loved the chorus, so I kept working on making the verses stronger and the lyrics more relevant. I then met with my collaborator, Mark Matson, to record the first vocal demo. It was pretty good, but not perfect. We let the song marinate for a few months before giving it a second look. The last part we recorded was the “Rise up” section. When I looked up from my congas and saw the look on my engineer’s face, I knew that we had made something special.
Does the song serve as a prelude to what’s in store for your next album?
KW: This song has a message that everyone needs to hear. I know listening to it during its many rewrites helped me get through some rough days. There was a reason Tony sent me that simple blank canvas. I feel like this song and others on the upcoming album are good medicine. We have all been through some traumatic challenges these past few years, and it’s important that we do not let the pain defeat or define us. It’s natural and healthy to look back and reflect every once in a while, but we can’t live in the past. We need to keep pressing on.
Kristine W’s “Can’t Look Back” is available now on all digital retailers via Kristine’s own imprint, Fly Again Music Productions. For more information, visit http://kristinew.com.