Nina Simone

~ Person

Legal name: Eunice Kathleen Waymon


Nina Simone (/ˈnnə sˈmn/; born Eunice Kathleen Waymon; February 21, 1933 – April 21, 2003) was an American singer, songwriter, pianist, arranger, and civil rights activist who worked in a broad range of musical styles including classical, jazz, blues, folk, R&B, gospel, and pop.

Born in North Carolina, the sixth child of a preacher, Simone aspired to be a concert pianist. With the help of the few supporters in her hometown of Tryon, North Carolina, she enrolled in the Juilliard School of Music in New York.

Waymon then applied for a scholarship to study at the prestigious Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where she was denied despite a well-received audition. Simone became fully convinced this rejection had been entirely due to her race, a statement that has been a matter of controversy. Years later, two days before her death, the Curtis Institute of Music bestowed an honorary degree on Simone.

To make a living, Eunice Waymon changed her name to "Nina Simone". The change related to her need to disguise herself from family members, having chosen to play "the devil's music" or "cocktail piano" at a nightclub in Atlantic City. She was told in the nightclub that she would have to sing to her own accompaniment, and this effectively launched her career as a jazz vocalist.

Simone recorded more than forty albums, mostly between 1958, when she made her debut with Little Girl Blue, and 1974, and had a hit in the United States in 1958 with "I Loves You, Porgy".

Simone's musical style fused gospel and pop with classical music, in particular Johann Sebastian Bach, and accompanied expressive, jazz-like singing in her contralto voice.

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Album + Compilation

Year Title RatingReleases
The Gold Collection: Classic Performances 1
The Masters 1
The Other Woman 1

Album + Live

Year Title RatingReleases
1959 Nina Simone at Town Hall 5
1960 Nina Simone at Newport 2
1962 Nina Simone at The Village Gate 5
1964 Nina Simone in Concert 4
1968 'Nuff Said! 2
1970 Black Gold 4
1972 In Concert: Emergency Ward! 2
1972 Right On! 1
1974 It Is Finished 3
1974 The Great Show of Nina Simone "Live in Paris" 1
1984 Nina Simone Live 1
1987 Let It Be Me 3
1987 Live at Ronnie Scott's 5
1989 In Concert 2
1993 Angel of the Morning 1
1997 NINA SIMONE 4 1
1998 At Newport, at The Village Gate, and Elsewhere… 1
1999 Gifted and Black 2
2002 Emergency Ward / It Is Finished / Black Gold 1
2005 Let It Be Me 1
2005 Nina Simone at Carnegie Hall 2
2007 Theatre Royal, Drury Lane 1977 1
2013 Black Gold 1

Album + Remix

Year Title RatingReleases
2006 Remixes One 1
2006 Remixed & Reimagined 2


Year Title RatingReleases
1960 Don’t Smoke in Bed / African Mailman 1
1969 To Be Young, Gifted and Black / Save Me 1
1982 My Baby Just Cares for Me 3
1989 It's Cold Out Here 2
2002 See-Line Woman 1
2002 Funkier Than A Mosquito’s Tweeter / Save Me 1
2003 Sinnerman 1


Year Title RatingReleases
2006 Ain't Got No, I Got Life (Remix) 1


Year Title RatingReleases
2015 The Nina Simone Mastertakes 1

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