NINA SIMONE Biography - Musicians


Biography » musicians » nina simone


Name: Nina Simone                                                                   
Born: 21 February 1933                                                               
Died: 21 April 2003 (aged 70)                                                       
Eunice Kathleen Waymon, better known by her stage name Nina Simone                   
(February 21, 1933 - April 21, 2003), was a Grammy Award-nominated                   
American singer, songwriter, pianist, arranger and civil rights activist.           
Although she disliked being categorized, Simone is generally classified as a         
jazz musician. She preferred the term "Black Classical Music" herself. Simone       
originally aspired to become a classical pianist, but her work covers an             
eclectic variety of musical styles besides her classical basis, such as jazz,       
soul, folk, R&B, gospel, and pop music. Her vocal style (with a rich alto vocal     
range) is characterized by intense passion, breathiness, and tremolo.               
Sometimes known as the High Priestess of Soul, she paid great attention to the       
musical expression of emotions. Within one album or concert she could fluctuate     
between exuberant happiness or tragic melancholy. These fluctuations also           
characterized her own personality and personal life, worsened by a bipolar           
disorder with which she was diagnosed in the mid-sixties, but was kept secret       
until 2004.                                                                         
Simone recorded over 40 live and studio albums, the biggest body of her work         
being released between 1958 (when she made her debut with Little Girl Blue) and     
1974. Songs she is best known for include "My Baby Just Cares for Me", "I Put a     
Spell on You", "I Loves You Porgy", "Feeling Good", "Sinner Man", "To Be Young,     
Gifted and Black", "Strange Fruit", "Ain't Got No-I Got Life" and "I Want a         
Little Sugar in My Bowl". Her music and message made a strong and lasting impact     
on African-American culture, illustrated by the numerous contemporary artists       
who cite her as an important influence (among them Mary J. Blige, Alicia Keys,       
Jeff Buckley, and Lauryn Hill), as well as the extensive use of her music on         
soundtracks and in remixes.