A Different Day - album # 5 - spring 2010
a violet inch records/last gang labels product
Emerging from a background of visual arts and a degree in Women’s Studies from Queen’s University, Kinnie Starr originally signed to Mercury/Island/DefJam after a massive bidding war in 1996. Even Clive Davis flew out to personally dine her in Vancouver in an attempt to bring the young artist into his roster of pop stars! Starr politely declined and has since enjoyed slow building working relationships with Lakeshore Records USA, Maple Music Canada, and Maple Music’s flagship 2006 label, Fontana USA. A prolific writer, Starr is currently signed to a prestigious publishing deal with Ole Publishing.
Starr has worked with industry heavy hitters Wendy and Lisa (Prince), David Campbell (Beck’s father), Carmen Rizzo (Alanis Morisette), Chris Bruce and Earl Harvin (Seal, The The), Tegan and Sara, and Nelly Furtado. Furtado acknowledges Starr as one of her key influences.
Starr’s songs have been featured on The L-Word, Thirteen, and in Zellers advertisements, as well as on Le Chateau’s regular national play lists (Canada) and Fashion Television Canada. She has toured Germany, Japan, Spain, England, the USA and Canada, and performed in Canada’s National Aboriginal Achievement Awards twice – Starr is of mixed European and Mohawk descent, a true Canadian to the core. In 2003 she was headhunted for her “rare and unique frame” and cast in Cirque Du Soleils sexy X-rated show, “Zumanity”. That same year she was nominated for a Juno as “Best New Artist”. Most notably, The Royal British Museum in Victoria, Canada recognized Starr as one of BC’s cultural icons in 2008.
Today, the tri-lingual Starr is set to release her fifth album, A Different Day, thru Last Gang Labels (Metric, Death Cab for Cutie). A Different Day (produced by Chin Injeti) is a focused collection of optimistic head-nodding songs exclusively about LOVE; 2009’s ticket for mass reconstruction. Platonic love, broken love, and love uncovered. Human relationships are at the center of her gaze for this 5th album. Often pegged for her fierce intelligence and ability as a rapper, A Different Day turns the page now onto Starr’s chanteuse-like grace. Bored of the bravado and posturing that goes hand in hand with hip hop, she delves into her love of songwriting with tenderly paced phrasing, electric and acoustic guitars, and soaring melodies evocative of originals like Neil Young, Tom Petty, Cat Power and Sade.
Starr is a ‘behind the scenes’ social activist, working with youth whenever possible. She visited over 60 schools in 2007/2008/2009 as a mentor through ‘Artstarts in Schools’ promoting literacy and authentic expression through hip hop and poetry. She also teaches part time for the Manitoba Audio Recording Industry Association, and co-founded Vancouver’s ‘Aboriginal Music Lab’ with Sal Fererras and Vancouver Community College in 2006.
- The New Yorker calls her “…edgy and enchanting.”
- Japan Times notes, “…never didactic, always intelligent.”
- Canada’s Globe and Mail cites her “…raw and feral talent.”
- Philadelphia’s The Record calls her a “sensual, spiritual, self-possessed original … blazing her own influential trail.”
After a handful of albums and a decade of international touring, Starr recently published a book of her own illustrations and poetry, entitled “How I Learned To Run” (House of Parlance, 2008/2009); a nod to her visual art background and a contemplative look at history, sexuality, love. Starr is also a certified yoga alliance teacher and teaches alignment and meditation privately for those un-interested in ‘pop yoga’ or ‘microwave yoga’. She has studied interdisciplinary physical arts since 1990.