Despite her youth Nina has achieved a level of success and professionalism that artists many years her senior have failed to reach. To chart this career we must reach back into her beginnings – that isn’t too far.
She has been deeply influenced by both her parents, who have prestigious musical and technical backgrounds. Her father switched gears from being an electrical engineer to an audio engineer. This moved the family from Colorado to California. While in California Nina applied to the music program at UCLA where she was denied entry due to lack of technical knowledge. The powers that be failed to realize they had a natural talent on their hands. Undaunted Nina continued on her own unique path to success.
Her mother’s role in her career would take place on a creative level. To this day she assists in the writing and arranging process. Currently father, mother, and daughter complete a musical team that is geared for success.
Nina is not only a provocative singer she is a lyricist, composer, and arranger. All of this comes without formal instruction. In that vein, she retains a level of purity and dedication that creates a refreshing and powerful end “product”. She admits being an independent artist can make the road to success much more difficult, but different avenues exist today that were not available a few years ago. This being the case she has taken full control in every aspect of her career. It appears she is as brilliant on the business end of the music industry as she is on the creative end.
She didn’t spend much time working with bands other than her own. Her first project was with an acoustic trio Lost Generation that she headlined. The band was renamed Nina and The Lost Generation a short time later. They played the local clubs in and around the Denver area. Not only was she building a following but she was also gaining the support of the community that included the Denver Broncos. She credits much of her success by being surrounded by those who have supported her.
Since her beginnings she has toured extensively appearing at numerous blues festivals across the country, gaining well deserved recognition and exposure. She appeared at Lilith Fair in 1998 and Woodstock in 1999. She has an extensive tour schedule planned through 2000 that includes The Waterfront Blues Festival in Portland Oregon on July 3rd.
Nina’s personal musical tastes vary a great deal. This is reflected in her latest release Shades. Shades is a refreshing blend of gospel, funk, and blues that keeps the album from being predictable. Her vocal quality ranges from soulful to angelic with a power and clarity that is rarely heard.
Other albums include Guilt And Honey ’93 and Bootleg ‘95
Article written by: Leslie
Leslie Sallee is a former audio engineer and is currently trying to figure out what to do with the rest of her life.
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