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Exclusive Interview: Karine Hannah Pays Homage to the Classics with “Guilty Pleasures”

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Once famous for her Barbra Streisand’s resemblance, Karine Hannah’s upcoming ‘Guilty Pleasures’ proves that her voice is her own and timeless. To be hosted for a one night only event on November 1st, 2019 at the Feinstein’s /54 Below, Karine will be putting a twist on classic song favorites

Fans can expect to hear songs such as “Come Sail Away” (Styx), “How Much I Feel” (Ambrosia), “Baby Come Back” (Player), “Could This Be the Magic” (Barry Manillow), “Broken Wings” (Mister Mister), “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” (Elton John) and more.

“I think I tend to gravitate towards music from the 70s and 80s the most,” Karine says in an exclusive interview, “because that’s the music that was playing in the background on the radio when I was growing up. My mother loved listening to the radio. Do you remember radio?”

Folks might not listen to the radio as much anymore, but these classics are still popular on streaming services like Spotify, perhaps, in your Oldies but Goodies playlist. That’s what makes her voice so soothing, it’s reminiscent of a better time in music. Her sound is meant to connect with the heart, instead of a beat.

“It just reminds me of my childhood. I love singing them, and people love hearing them. They are all undeniable melodies. Some will be a surprise.” 

In regards to Streisand, Karine confesses that “She will not be coming out to play.” Her set will include 38 songs – a lot in the medley form – because, otherwise, it would take 3 hours to perform. 

“I tried to tone down the fact that there is a slight resemblance to Barbra Streissand. I won’t be bringing her out. I let that side of me show when I’m doing a Streisand show. This is really a pop/rock concert.”

All of the proceeds from “Guilty Pleasures” will benefit the Manhattan Children’s Center.

“There is someone in my family who is autistic, so I am a big supporter of autism awareness and charities. This school is located in New York City. They are a one-of-a-kind, world class, special needs school for kids in the autism spectrum. This school is special, and there’s no other place like it in North America. They really give these kids a fighting chance for a better future.”

Though this show is bound to be a defining moment in Karine’s career, she shared some of her most memorable moments…so far. 

“There’s probably three moments. The first moment is the earliest memory and most defining moment, when I was asked by Celine Dion to sing at her wedding. When does that happen!”

It doesn’t.

“The second one was when I landed a major record deal. It happened when I least expected it. The third was when I did my very first official music video for the record label. I think that I have dreamed of doing a music video since I was three-years-old.”

Karine has been singing her entire life, but her passion for music coincides with her passion to make others smile. 

“I love performing because I love seeing the reactions on people’s faces, and bringing them joy, obviously. Seeing that they are really happy and having a great night, that’s what it’s all about. I don’t do it for myself. I really do it for the audience. I see the effect I can have on them. When they walk away and tell me, after the show, that it was such a great night, that’s all that I can ask for.”

In regards to her next album, the singer assures us that it’s in the works. 

“We’re heading in a very different direction than I had ever done before. You know what they say, ‘All good things take time.’ So it will be worth the wait once it finally gets released.”

Karine has worked for every opportunity that she has had.  When asked what her advice would be for others still waiting to make it, her answer echoes that of the best in the industry. 

“Stop waiting. The minute that you stop waiting… you should just do it. Nowadays, you really don’t need to be backed by a record label. In my days you needed a record label to launch a career, because there weren’t that many social media platforms. Now, you can totally do it on your own. There are a lot of people who have gained a lot of success by doing it on their own. Then, the record labels come knocking.”

Follow Karine on Instagram @thekarinehannah

You can purchase tickets to her upcoming show here: https://54below.com/events/karine-hannah-guilty-pleasures/

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Jamie Valentino

Jamie Valentino is a Colombian-born writer based in New York City. His work has been published in Google's Art & Culture, W42ST Magazine, VULKAN, The Queer Review & STATOREC. He previously worked in the showroom at the Burberry U.S. Headquarters and freelanced in communications for Manhattan Renovations. He covers pop culture, entertainment, NYFW, premieres, events and interviews. Instagram: @Jamie_Valentino Jamievalentino26@gmail.com

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