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Kristina Train

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Kristina Train

Kristina Train
Background information
Born (1986-01-17) January 17, 1986 (age 28)
New York City, USA
Origin Savannah, Georgia, USA
Genres pop, soul, jazz
Instruments singing, violin, piano, guitar
Years active 2001-present
Labels Blue Note Records EMI (2009)
Mercury Records (UK) (2011- )

Kristina Train (born January 17, 1986 in New York City) is an American pop singer-songwriter and musician who has lived in London, United Kingdom since 2011.[1] Her music blends influences from country, soul, gospel, blues, folk, and jazz.[2]

Kristina was born in New York City and raised in Savannah, Georgia.[3] She is of Norwegian, Italian, and Irish heritage. At the age of four, Kristina started studying classical violin and ballet. She taught herself to play piano and guitar at an early age. Kristina was a dancer in the Garden State Ballet, Savannah Danse Theatre, and Ballet South where she studied under Karena Brock-Carlyle (Principal dancer of the American Ballet Theatre sharing roles with such stars as Natalia Makarova, Cynthia Gregory and Carla Fracci; and partnering with stars such as Rudolph Nureyev, Ivan Nagy, Fernando Bujones, and Mikhail Baryshnikov).

Kristina spent her youth volunteering at the Savannah Music Festival where she eventually returned to perform.[4] She sang in school and church gospel choirs and played in community orchestras and jazz bands.[4][5] Kristina was a member of the Garden State Philharmonic Youth Orchestra and the Savannah Civic Orchestra. She was a selected member of The American Children of SCORE (String, Choral, Orff and Recorder Ensemble). At 13 years old, Kristina was the youngest member accepted to play in the Beaufort Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Maestro Fred Devyatkin. She was a recurring guest soloist with the Savannah Symphony Orchestra under Maestro Philip Greenberg, starting at age 16.

While growing up in downtown Savannah, Kristina also immersed herself in the jazz and blues scene by hanging around local clubs. She performed regularly with the legendary Ben Tucker who performed and recorded with Quincy Jones, Peggy Lee, Dexter Gordon, Ellis Marsalis, Wynton Marsalis, Buddy Rich, Billy Taylor, and hundreds of other jazz greats. Tucker co-wrote the song Comin' Home Baby released by Mel Torme, Herbie Mann and Michael Buble.[6] Tucker was a great influence in fostering Train's interest in jazz music which lead to her performing in the Savannah Jazz Festival with the Savannah Jazz Orchestra led by trombonist, Teddy Adams (Cab Calloway, Art Blakey, and Irene Reid among others). Kristina continues to play jazz shows upon returning to Savannah with friend and jazz guitarist, Howard Paul (Bucky Pizzarelli, Howard Alden, Joe Beck and Jimmy Bruno among others). While in high school, she received the Louis Armstrong Jazz Award. Kristina was also influenced by the strong ties to blues music in Savannah. She performed regularly with Eric Culberson at Savannah Blues which attracted musicians such as Dick Dale, Robert Randolph and the Family Band, and the North Mississippi Allstars. This lead to Kristina's friendship and collaboration with Mike Mattison and Paul Olsen of Scrapomatic, Derek Trucks, and Susan Tedeschi.

Train began singing and playing violin with The Looters in 1999. They backed European musicians Rosa King and Saskia Laroo on tours of the US. At 12 years old, Kristina's uncle began sneaking her in the back entrance of Kevin Barry's pub to sing and fiddle traditional Celtic music with performers such as Mary Black and members of Cherish The Ladies, and other Irish greats.

Although originally planning to attend Trinity College, Dublin, Train resisted family pressure and decided to stay closer to her budding musical career in the South. While attending college in Athens, Georgia, she was a member of The Park Bench Blues Band.[4] In 2001 Train played a showcase in New York City for Blue Note Records EMI. Executives Bruce Lundvall and Arif Mardin subsequently invited Train to sign to Blue Note.[7] Train left school to pursue music full-time, moving to New York and signing with Blue Note.[4] Kristina continued to maintain a friendship with mentor, Bruce Lundvall.


2009: Spilt Milk

Kristina Train's debut album, Spilt Milk, was released on October 20, 2009.[8] Blue Note had initially been interested in pairing her with Norah Jones producer Lee Alexander,[9] but Train instead went to London and asked Jimmy Hogarth to produce the album. Train co-wrote eight songs on the album, collaborating with Hogarth, Eg White, and Ed Harcourt. Train also arranged and overdubbed strings on three tracks on Spilt Milk. Kristina Train possesses a singing voice from another era… Her sound recalls Dusty Springfield, Aretha Franklin, and Laura Nyro… she lives up to the legacy of the great voices that inspired her. -NPR Music [10] Spilt Milk is poised to make a big splash in the pop music world. Train’s voice is husky, rich and dark with a big range and maturity of style that belies her age… She’s confident – and with good reason. She’s got game. -BLURT [11]

2012: Dark Black

On 26 October 2012, Kristina Train's latest album, Dark Black was released for online purchases in the UK,[12] and on 5 November 2012, the CD was released in the UK.[13] The new album, where she has collaborated mainly with Ed Harcourt, Cherry Ghost's Simon Aldred, and Martin Craft,[1] features "Train’s dreamy, intense and intoxicating Southern American vocals."[14] The BBC reviewed it as An extraordinary record from a singer previously overlooked. [15] If you aren't in love with Train's voice by the end... there is something seriously wrong with your ears. -Huffington Post [16] The album was released by Mercury Records (UK).

Other projects

Train often plays with the band Scrapomatic and contributed vocals, violin, and songwriting on their 2006 album Alligator Love Cry.[17]

On October 10, 2007 Train performed at Carnegie Hall honoring Sir Elton John and Bernie Taupin for New York's Music For Youth.[18]

In 2009, Train toured the United States with Chris Isaak, Susan Tedeschi, and Keb' Mo[19]

Train performed at the T.J Martell Foundation 34th Annual Awards Gala alongside Willie Nelson, Dianne Reeves, and Wynton Marsalis on October 28, 2009.

From 2009-2010 Train performed with Al Green, Tony Bennett, The Roots, and Darius Rucker.

Train contributed vocals to Marc Cohn's 2010 album Listening Booth, and contributed vocals and fiddle on Collin Rocker's 2010 debut album Milkbox Love, Jukebox Blood, & Other American Favorites.[20]

Train toured the world with the legendary Herbie Hancock[21] as his lead singer and violinist for nearly two years appearing on American television programs: The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, Late Show With David Letterman, Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, Larry King Live, Today, and Good Morning America. The band included musicians: Lionel Loueke, Vinnie Colaiuta, James Genus, Pino Palladino, Tal Wilkenfeld, Greg Phillinganes, and Trevor Lawrence Jr.

Train performed at the star-studded bi-coastal 70th birthday celebration for Herbie Hancock which took place at New York's Carnegie Hall and Los Angeles' Hollywood Bowl alongside Wayne Shorter, Ron Carter, Jack DeJohnette, Dave Holland, Joe Lovano, Terence Blanchard, Wallace Roney, Zakir Hussain, Esperanza Spalding, Derek Trucks, Susan Tedeschi, Lisa Hannigan, Alex Acuña, Paulinho Da Costa, Juanes, Niladri Kumar, Bill Cosby, and Tavis Smiley.

Train co-wrote the closing track Salvation on Robert Randolph & the Family Band's album We Walk this Road which was produced by T-Bone Burnett.[22]

On 11 December 2010 Kristina Train performed with Herbie Hancock, India.Arie, Florence And The Machine, Robyn, Colbie Caillat, and Barry Manilow at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert hosted by Denzel Washington and Anne Hathaway in Oslo, Norway.

In June 2011 Train collaborated with Dr. Dre in studio sessions for his forthcoming album, Detox.

On 30 October 2012 Kristina Train made her debut performance on Later... with Jools Holland on BBC 2.[23]

Kristina Train was featured on the soundtrack of 2013 British Comedy I Give It A Year singing the Coldplay song, Sparks.[24]

On 30 January 2013 Kristina Train was the first artist to sing live at the grand opening of The Shard marking this as the highest performance in Europe.[25]

On 7 March 2013 Kristina Train made her debut performance at London's Royal Albert Hall with Ron Sexsmith.[26]

Train is featured on vocals and violin on Iko's third studio album, The Victory Hall.

Kristina Train is the voice of the Lexus Amazing In Motion 2013 global campaign, singing the song I'm Wandering previously released by Jackie Wilson (1958) and Aretha Franklin (1962).[26]

Kristina Train sings Waltz With Me Under The Sun, the theme song of the 2013 film The Queen of Carthage starring Shiloh Fernandez and Keisha Castle-Hughes.[27]


Studio albums

Title Album details
Spilt Milk
Dark Black


External links

  • Kristina Train Official Website Retrieved 2012-11-05
  • Kristina Train Retrieved 2012-11-05

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