Christian John Wikane

Christian John Wikane is a NYC-based music journalist and essayist. He's a Contributing Editor for PopMatters and has interviewed more than 500 recording artists, songwriters, and producers, including Paul McCartney, Janelle Monáe, Donna Summer, Pete Seeger, Annie Lennox, Maurice White, Carly Simon, and Kenny Gamble. He is currently co-producer of the video interview series "Unscripted: Conversations with Christian John Wikane" on YouTube, which features his interviews with legendary GRAMMY, Tony, and Emmy-winning artists, and recently had the honor of contributing to HBO's Emmy-nominated Tina Turner documentary, TINA (2021), and serving as "History Consultant" on DIONNE WARWICK: DON'T MAKE ME OVER (2021). Christian has had the privilege of curating and moderating several events at the Apollo Theater for Apollo Education's "Live Wire" series, including "Legendary: A Conversation with Dionne Warwick and Melba Moore," "Bold Soul Sisters," a panel discussion featuring Nona Hendryx, Ruth Pointer, Kathy Sledge, and Rochelle Fleming, and "She's A Rebel: An Interview with Martha Reeves, Sarah Dash, and Joshie Jo Armstead." Among other live events, he's moderated "From Studio 54 to Number One" for the Brooklyn Museum's "Studio 54" exhibit, plus "The Soulfulness of David Bowie" featuring Carlos Alomar and Robin Clark as part of Brooklyn Museum's "David Bowie is" exhibit and Stevens Institute of Technology's CAL Dean's Lecture Series. Most recently, he conducted a Q&A with disco legends D.C. LaRue and Felipe Rose (original co-founder and Native of Village People) for Queer/Art/Film's screening of the Motown-Casablanca film Thank God It's Friday (1978) at IFC Center and hosted a conversation with West End legend Ray Shell at SpoonfedNYC to celebrate the 35th anniversary of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Starlight Express. Since 2010, Christian has authored extensive liner notes for more than 200 album re-issues by Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductees, Grammy winners, and other icons of R&B, rock, dance, pop, and jazz. He's also conducted interviews for several BBC Radio documentaries, Sirius XM's Studio 54 channel, Chase Bank ("Inside Access"), and hosted/produced more than a dozen concerts at Joe’s Pub (the Public Theater), the Blue Note, Iridium Jazz Club, and Wölffer Estate Vineyard. He's guest lectured for Barnard College's "Harlem Semester" Program and presented at EMP Pop Conference, the Parrish Art Museum, Apollo Education's "Master Class" Series, and NYU Steinhardt’s Department of Music. He's the sole author of Casablanca Records: Play It Again, a 50,000-word oral history that documented the 35th anniversary of Casablanca Records. www.christianjohnwikane.com
She Wants Her MTV:  How ‘Private Dancer’ Made Tina Turner a Video Queen

She Wants Her MTV: How ‘Private Dancer’ Made Tina Turner a Video Queen

In this PopMatters exclusive, the directors, choreographers, and dancers behind Tina Turner’s platinum-selling Private Dancer video 45 recall how the Queen of Rock went from MTV to number one.

He’s the Leader: An Interview with Aretha’s “Main Man” Fonzi Thornton

He’s the Leader: An Interview with Aretha’s “Main Man” Fonzi Thornton

From the Apollo Theater to the Kennedy Center, acclaimed vocalist Fonzi Thornton shares untold stories from his solo career and his prolific stage work with Diana Ross, Bryan Ferry, Aretha Franklin, and other music legends.

Making a Masterpiece: An Interview with Legendary Composer Valerie Simpson

Making a Masterpiece: An Interview with Legendary Composer Valerie Simpson

Fifty years after Ashford & Simpson gave Diana Ross her first number one solo hit with "Ain't No Mountain High Enough", Valerie Simpson reflects on a lifetime of writing chart-topping anthems for Motown and beyond.

Flowers for Hermes: An Interview with Performing Activist André De Shields

Flowers for Hermes: An Interview with Performing Activist André De Shields

From creating the title role in The Wiz to winning an Emmy for Ain't Misbehavin', André De Shields reflects on his roles in more than four decades of iconic musicals, including the GRAMMY and Tony Award-winning Hadestown.

“Let the Sunshine In” with Tony-Winning Legend Melba Moore

“Let the Sunshine In” with Tony-Winning Legend Melba Moore

After blazing trails at the Met and in the Broadway cast of Hair, Melba Moore reflects on her groundbreaking career while celebrating a pair of new gospel and dance releases.

Finding the Light: An Interview with Kathy Sledge

Finding the Light: An Interview with Kathy Sledge

With a timeless voice that's made her the "Queen of Club Quarantine", Grammy-nominated vocalist Kathy Sledge opens up her "Family Room" and delivers new grooves with Horse Meat Disco.

Going Beyond the Neutron Dance with Ruth Pointer of the Pointer Sisters

Going Beyond the Neutron Dance with Ruth Pointer of the Pointer Sisters

Ruth Pointer reflects on her multi-faceted career with the Pointer Sisters, honors the memory of her sister Bonnie, and shares the joy found in her music and fashion.

Reaching for the Sky: An Interview with Singer-Songwriter Bruce Sudano

Reaching for the Sky: An Interview with Singer-Songwriter Bruce Sudano

How did Bruce Sudano become a superhero? PopMatters has the answer as Sudano celebrates the release of Spirals and reflects on his career from Brooklyn Dreams to Broadway.

Cosmic Dust and Interstellar Grooves: An Interview with Nona Hendryx

Cosmic Dust and Interstellar Grooves: An Interview with Nona Hendryx

As guest Artistic Director for 'The Cosmic Synthesis of Sun Ra and Afrofuturism' at Harlem Stage, funk rock icon Nona Hendryx brings audiences to other dimensions.

Perfect Harmony: An Interview with Legendary Vocal Group the Waters

Perfect Harmony: An Interview with Legendary Vocal Group the Waters

From Phil Spector's Wall of Sound to 20 Feet from Stardom, Julia, Maxine, Luther, and Oren Waters reflect on their six-decade career, including historic sessions with Herbie Hancock, Neil Diamond, Michael Jackson, and countless other music legends.

The Reason for the Season: A Christmas Chat with Dionne Warwick

The Reason for the Season: A Christmas Chat with Dionne Warwick

Following the release of her latest album She's Back, the legendary Dionne Warwick delivers another musical gift with Dionne Warwick & the Voices of Christmas.

On the Raydio: An Interview with Ray Parker, Jr.

On the Raydio: An Interview with Ray Parker, Jr.

With a documentary and new album slated for 2020, GRAMMY-winning legend Ray Parker, Jr. reflects on his career from Motown to "Ghostbusters" and beyond.