|Birth name||Whitney Margaret Wolanin|
June 29, 1990 |
Albany, New York, United States
|Genres||Pop, pop rock|
|Instruments||Piano, drums, guitar|
Whitney Wolanin (pronounced WHOA-Lan-in), born June 29, 1990 (New York), is a singer and songwriter, who also plays piano and drums. Whitney is a mezzo soprano vocalist with an octave range of nearly 4. Her father, Vincent, is a developer (Wolanin Companies Ltd.) who also started TopNotch Entertainment in the late 1980s. Wolanin records for TopNotch Records, which she and her sister Victoria own.
Growing up in Florida, Wolanin first told her father of her desire to record an album when she was 11, after "pretending to be Janet Jackson" at a young age. When she was 13, her father relented, and over her summer break she recorded an album with legendary Funk Brothers bassist, Bob Babbitt, in Nashville. The album, Funkology XIII, released two years later in 2005, was made up of twelve R&B covers (mostly of Motown origin) and one original.
A version of Marvin Gaye and Kim Weston's "It Takes Two", sung with Jimi Jamison of Survivor, reached #9 on radio trade publication Friday Morning Quarterback's AC40 Chart, and was a #1 most added song, Wolanin's song “Good” (which she co-wrote with Babbitt and her father) peaked at #7.
In late 2005, Wolanin released "Christmas (The Warmest Time of the Year)"—another original she co-wrote with Babbitt and her father. The song made FMQB's Top 100 airplay chart at #87 in 2005.
The following year, Wolanin released her second album, Christmasology, a collection of Christmas songs recorded in 2005. Christmasology featured 15 songs, including "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree”, "Frosty the Snowman”, "O Come All Ye Faithful" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", as well as "Christmas (The Warmest Time of the Year)". "Frosty” was the Most Added Christmas song at radio in the weeks of November 5, 2006 and November 19, 2006. In December 2006, "Frosty" peaked at #11 on R&R's Media Base Top 40 Radio Airplay Charts, and was played on over 800 radio stations.
"Loud and Clear", a song Wolanin co-wrote with her older sister Victoria, was released as a single on June 4, 2007 to dance and club radio. At the time, four more single releases were planned. "Loud and Clear", was featured on an episode of the MTV series The Hills.
Wolanin released a six-song EP, Girl, in 2009, composed of six songs written both by herself and with her sister, some dating to when she was 13 years old. An acoustic version of that EP's "So Close" was included on the compilation album Majic Miracle Music Vol. 3, a benefit for the James Whitcomb Riley Hospital for Children.
Wolanin released Whitney Wolanin 1 in April 2011, a six-song EP of original compositions, which she recorded while attending Vanderbilt University.
Wolanin, at age 21, released her radio single "Honesty" on January 9, 2012. The single, which she wrote and recorded, spent over 36 weeks on the national airplay charts, and peaked at #21 on Mediabase, and #23 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart in April 2012.
A new mini-album, Let's Be Honest Part 1, was released on August 14 in the US and internationally on iTunes. It featured five new original songs and the previously released "Honesty".
In December 2012, Wolanin released a new recording of "Frosty the Snowman" which peaked at #13 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart.
Wolanin released her next single, "Wrong Guy (I Did It This Time)", on February 11, 2013. She wrote and recorded the song, which is about wanting someone that you shouldn't. "Wrong Guy (I Did It This Time)" peaked at #16 on Mediabase, and #17 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart.
On November 5, 2013, Wolanin released "Run, Run Rudolph", which peaked at #2 on the Mediabase Holiday Chart and also on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. The single was taken from her Run, Run Rudolph mini-album, which included a country mix of "Run, Run Rudolph", "Frosty", and a new recording of "Silver Bells". In conjunction with the release, "Run, Run Rudolph" exclusively premiered on Yahoo! Music.
To coincide with the release of the song to radio, a "Run, Run Rudolph" HD parody music film was created. The parody, based on the Christmas classic A Christmas Story was shot on location at the A Christmas Story House in Cleveland, OH using actual movie props. With all parts being played by family members, and under the direction of Carl Diebold, the film in its entirety was shot in one day.
On March 17, 2014, Wolanin released the single "Forever", which is went to 22 on the Mediabase charts. The song has received steady airplay on 3 formats including Top 40, Hot AC, and AC. With Forever charting, it was her fifth consecutive song to chart.
For the 2014 Holiday season, Wolanin released "Silver Bells (2013)", and debuted on the Holiday charts at #3, behind renditions of "Baby It's Cold Outside" by both Idina Menzel and Seth MacFarlane, making this her 6th consecutive Billboard charting song.
Currently, Wolanin has stated publicly that she is working on her full length album to be released in late summer/early fall of 2014.
Wolanin was a celebrity spokesperson for the now-defunct Youth Crime Watch of America, helping young people avoid problems on the internet. Wolanin also participated in Rockin' Christmas Fund charity fundraiser events to benefit the Rockin’ Christmas Scholarship Fund. Her involvement included visiting Children's Hospitals with other celebrities and providing autographed CDs to children at the Shriners Hospitals at Christmas. At 6 feet tall, she played on her high school basketball team.
Wolanin enjoys doing Improv comedy in her spare time. While at Vanderbilt University, she was a part of the group Tongue-N-Cheek, and is currently a member of the Improv group LOL Nashville. Whitney has also performed in several off-Broadway musicals.
- Funkology XIII (2005, TopNotch)
- "Christmas (The Warmest Time of the Year)" single (2005, TopNotch)
- Christmasology (2006, TopNotch)
- "Loud and Clear" single (2007, TopNotch)
- Girl EP (2009, TopNotch)
- 1 EP (2011, TopNotch)
- Let's Be Honest, Pt. 1 EP (2012, TopNotch)
- "Wrong Guy (I Did It This Time)" single (2013, TopNotch)
- "Run, Run Rudolph" Mini Album (2013, TopNotch)
- "Forever" single (2014, TopNotch)
- A long-distance goal, The Business Review, January 30, 1998
- Whitney Wolanin's Rising Star, Jim Sullivan, Hall of Fame Magazine
- Star on the horizon, Jennifer Sutcliffe, Naples Daily News, November 3, 2006.
- "Bubbling Under: Zendaya Hits 'Replay' For The First Time - Billboard". 26-08-13. Retrieved 07-02-14. Check date values in:
- AC Top 40 Radio Chart, Friday Morning Quarterback, April 19, 2006
- AC Radio Weekly Report, Friday Morning Quarterback, April 2006
- AC Top 40 Radio Chart, Friday Morning Quarterback, November 2, 2005
- Annual Summary Report, Friday Morning Quarterback, December 2005
- R&R, December 4, 2006
- AC Radio Chart, R&R, December 11, 2006
- AC Radio Media Base Holiday Summary, Radio & Records Weekly, December 30, 2006
- Local singer, 16, rises above with new single, Mark S. Krzos, The News-Press, May 18, 2007.
- Majic Miracle Music Volume 3
- "Whitney Wolanin Chart History". Billboard. Retrieved 13 May 2014.
- Get in the Holiday Spirit With First Listen To Singer-Pianist Whitney Wolanin’s ‘Rudolph’, Wendy Geller, Yahoo! Music, November 4, 2013.
- Sounds of Motown, Tiffany Yates, Naples Daily News, March 24, 2006.
- "Whitney Wolanin: The Songstress" Inside Vandy by OLIVIA KUPFER, February 2, 2011