Alinka has played alongside a wide array of artists, including: Mark Farina, Jesse Rose, Claude VonStroke, Jackmaster, Derrick Carter, DJ Heather, Infinity Ink, Kim Ann Foxman, Julio Bashmore, and countless others over the course of her 14-year career. In 2013 she and Shaun J. Wright started their monthly party Twirl at Berlin Nightclub in Chicago. The party has since featured guests such as: Derrick Carter, DJ Heather, The Black Madonna, Eli Escobar, Lauren Flax, JD Samson, and The Carry Nation. In addition Alinka is currently a resident at Primary Night Club in Chicago along with Gene Farris, Henry Saiz, and John Mork to name a few.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do. Hello! My name is Alinka, I was born in Ukraine and grew up in Chicago. I spend most of my time making and playing House music. I own a record label called Twirl Recordings with my bff Shaun J. Wright. I love NYC pizza, queers, feminists, vinyl, animals, and Kid Robot toys.
How has living in Chicago affected your music? It’s really changed my life; I don’t know if any of it would have happened this way had I not grown up here. The music I play and create was born here. The people that influenced me the most are all from here. I can go out any night of the week and find inspiration. It’s a city that teaches you to push yourself to the fullest because you’re surrounded by greatness.
How long have you lived in Chicago and what brought you there? I’ve lived in Chicago since 1988. I was born in Kiev Ukraine and spent my first 8 years living there and in Vienna. My family had relatives in Chicago that helped us leave the USSR and get to America.
Where do you plan to travel next? I’m off to NYC next, and then back to Europe in the fall.
Favorite dessert? Crème Brulee
How did your interest in music begin? It began with my family. My mom was a pianist so had a piano in my room and started lessons pretty much as soon as I could sit up. The lessons sadly ended when we left Kiev, but my interest in music remained. I got really into pop music when we came to America, as I had no exposure to any of that growing up in the USSR. I spent a lot of my childhood making mix tapes and collecting music. My initial exposure to dance music was from the radio in Chicago, though I didn’t really know what I was listening to or become knowledgeable until later in life.
What other musicians are you interested in right now? There’s a lot of musicians that I’m interested in it’s hard to make a list without leaving anyone out but Midnight Magic is my favorite band wise, and I recently stumbled upon a UK artist called Spatial Awareness and we’ve just signed him to our label Twirl. I’m really excited about his work!
Who would you ideally like to collaborate with? Damon Albarn
What was your first paying job? Scooping ice cream at Baskin Robbins!