“There are at least a few people in this thing determined to keep House Music weird. Chicago’s Alinka is one of them.” – Terry Matthew, 5Magazine
ALINKA , a.k.a., Alena Ratner, fell in love with House Music in the 90’s like many growing up in Chicago. She began collecting records and DJing in the year 2000. By 2001, Alinka landed the opening slot at Justin Long’s reknowned .Dotbleep night at Smart Bar, which she was a regular at until 2009. She began producing music in 2003, releasing a multitude of tracks on labels such as Igloo Recordings, Greenhouse, D’Lectable and Smart Bar’s Area DJ Records. In 2004, Alinka began touring globally, playing gigs throughout the U.K. and Europe.
Over the course of her 13-year career, Alinka has played alongside a wide array of artists, including: Mark Farina, Jesse Rose, Claude VonStroke, Toro Y Moi, Derrick Carter, DJ Heather, Peaches, Kim Ann Foxman, Crystal Castles and countless others. In 2013 she and Shaun J. Wright started their monthly residency Twirl at Berlin Nightclub in Chicago. The party has since featured guests such as: Derrick Carter, DJ Heather, Eli Escobar, Lauren Flax, JD Samson, and The Carry Nation. In addition Alinka is currently a resident at the successful Chicago monthly, Nü: The Outer Space Disco Dancing Society of Chicago at Neo.
The last two years have been particularly fruitful and rewarding for Alinka, due in large part to her friendship and musical partnership with singer, producer and DJ, Shaun J. Wright. Wright, whose rich, resonant voice has lended soul to music by Hercules and Love Affair, and Stereogamous, met Alinka in 2012 and the two instantly bonded over their love of Chicago House music. It wasn’t long before their evolving friendship resulted in what would be the first of many musical collaborations. Their first EP, “Twirl Vol.1,” was promptly signed to Derrick Carter and Luke Solomon’s esteemed house label, Classic Music Co. The EP went on to be lauded by the likes of Chris Duckenfield, Tensnake, Joyce Muniz, Hannah Holland, Doc Martin, Simon Baker, and many more. The release was followed by a 12″ remix compilation with remixes from Derrick Carter, Neville Watson and Chris E. Pants. The EP’s lead single, “Love Inspired,” was featured on Defected Records Compilation “Defected Presents The Closing Party Ibiza 2013,” as well as Defected’s In The House Radio show. In addition, Alinka and Wright have collaborated on a plethora of remixes for Hi Fashion, The Carry Nation, JD Samson & MEN, and Baby Alpaca. The pair is currently getting ready launch their label Twirl Recordings. Their first release titled “Journey Into The Deep” features remixes by Kim Ann Foxman, and Stereogamous, and will be out this fall! The pair also recently completed “Twirl Vol. 2” for Classic Music Company.
Beyond her collaborations with Wright, she has a multitude of new releases and remixes in the works. Her track, “Something New,” released on NBD Music Co., has garnered support from Tensnake, and Moonboots. Alinka’s ‘Basic’ EP which features remixes from Lil’ Mark, and Lauren Flax, was recently released on Get Up Recordings. The EP has already won approval from legendary artists Tyree Copper, Terry Francis, Brett Johnson, Justin Harris, Quentin Harris, and Inland Knights. Her most recent remixes include Eli Escobar’s track Anotha Luv for Get Up Recordings, and Asher Diamonds’ Got to Know for NBD Music Co. Her remix of Anotha Love was featured in Roger Sanchez’s Release Yourself Podcast #211 and #213, and was chosen into the Beatport Staff Picks as well as Top Exclusives of Week 22.