Karisa Winett
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Karisa Winett


Band Rock Pop


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Live performances
Genghis Cohen
San Diego Indie Fest 2010
Northridge Park Festival
Art Evolution Revolution
The Gig
B.B Kings
14 below
Live at the Lounge at the Comedy & Magic club



She's good enough to be a pro boxer, but Karisa Winett's passion is music. Though she's only 22 and her career just getting started, Winett already has quite a story to tell. Her tone is upbeat and engaging—and the word “driven” doesn’t just refer to Karisa hitting the road behind the wheel of her beloved candy-apple red ’68 Camaro. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ She sings with a degree of skill and power that recalls Heart’s Ann Wilson, one of her big inspirations, as are the Beatles and John Lennon, Hendrix and Cream. Her primary collaborator, veteran producer/multi-instrumentalist Michael James (whose credits include New Radicals, Hole, Jane’s Addiction, Robben Ford and Maia Sharp) and his production partner Bill Kole have tailored the arrangements on Karisa’s album-in-progress ("I Want It All"), to her innate feel for late-’60s and early-’70s rock. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ As to how this talented and determined young woman got to this place, well, it wasn’t without a great deal of effort… Karisa’s parents were young and struggling financially when she was born, and she learned the value of hard work while maintaining a positive attitude and a code of ethics based on the Golden Rule. From the very beginning Karisa was surrounded by rock music—her dad’s favorites were the Stones and Aerosmith—and she took to it naturally. “By the time I was four, I was driving my parents crazy in the car, singing ‘Start Me Up’ at the top of my lungs,” she says. “Even then, I knew exactly what I was going to do with my life.” But she had to overcome a couple of obstacles first. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- “I’ve had a weight problem all my life,” she says. “When I got serious about music, the people advising me would say, ‘You have a pretty face—you’re just too fat, you have to lose weight or you’ll never make it.’ That’s the sort of thing that could literally give you an eating disorder.” Or cause a quick shift in career plans. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Karisa, however, proceeded at full throttle. She took up boxing and now trains with veteran heavyweight and California champion (1978) Stan Ward (a well-known figure in the boxing world who served as sparring partner to Joe Frazier, George Foreman, Evander Holyfield, and others). Karisa also is an accomplished kickboxer having trained with the legendary Benny “The Jet” Urquidez. She is fearless in the ring and puts her pink gloves to the test against her male counterparts who have learned to cut her no slack. Ward has encouraged her to turn pro but making music remains Karisa’s passion and goal. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Between working out seven days a week, paying close attention to her instructors and learning how to eat properly and in moderation, Karisa eventually shed 40 pounds from her barely five-foot fame. “I did it the right way,” she says. “I still love my burgers and fries, but common sense is my philosophy. If you don't workout and you don't watch what you eat, ever, then that Big Mac is going straight to your hips.” ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Karisa’s determination toward all facets of her career remains boundless. “I got a copy of the Musicians Atlas and spent days calling every number in the book,” she says, with no hint of exaggeration. Several “pros” impressed by her talent and tenacious energy offered to work with her, only leading to a series of wrong turns and false starts. Undaunted, Karisa went into overdrive and forged ahead. One session did yield a handful of tracks on which Karisa performed someone else’s tunes and then added a couple of her own songs on the resulting demo. That disc found its way to James, who agreed to listen as a favor to friend. He was ready to press “eject” when the first of Karisa’s originals began, stopping him cold. From the first fully committed note she sang, James could tell that this girl had something special and that was the beginning of what has blossomed into a fruitful musical partnership. The result of their efforts is Karisa’s debut, "I Want It All," currently slated for release in early 2008 on the independent record label Fresh Baked Music.

At 21 years old Karisa Bucked the prevailing trend of "manufactured" pop artists by being involved in every aspect of making her record, from finding a producer to co-writing and writing all her songs. She found inspiration in the great rock of the 60s and 70s, and mixed it with modern textures and sophisticated arrangements. The result is a guitar-driven collection of songs that are instantly catchy, yet deep enough to continue to resonate after many listens.

The album was independently f