Nina Simone

Born on February 21 1933 was one of the best Jazz singers to ever walk this earth, being nominated fifteen times for the Grammy award she has beckoned success ever since her career started. As well as a singer she was a pianist, songwriter and Civil Rights Activist. Much of her music has been used in media and still is heavily used today. I hope that I do her enough justice because her music is like no other, not one single other artist even comes close to her style.

The first thing you notice when you listen to Nina Simone is her voice it is like nothing you have heard before, some thinks she has a male voice. Her voice is that unique. She puts every ounce of passion she has into her music, her voice is so soulful but the kind of soul that give you chills down your spine (This is meant in a good way). It is the kind of voice that is hard to copy, that kind of voice can only be produced from the heart. Another thing is her genre of music, she herself did not like to think she had a genre of music and I don’t blame her. Her music was very diverse although she had a strong jazz voice she was also able to produce hits on R&B, Pop, soul, folk and gospel. It is a surprise how her voice is able to suit the different genres, she can reach notes that will surprise. A lot of her music has been re-mixed and has been sung over, a lot of her music was loved by people from many genre backgrounds. I think a lot of people used her music not only because of what it sounded like but the strong message that it came with.

Her music has been used so much in music (obviously), movies and adverts, it is quite crazy. Her music has had a heavy influence on the music industry as it is used in completely different genres like hip hop. A good example of that is one song that was sung by Mary J. Blige which features Simone and Wil.I.Am, it is very good to see how her voice fits in with this kind song.  A lot of artists are also influenced by Nina Simone too for example  Mary J. Blige, Alicia Keys, Jeff Buckley, John Legend and Lauryn Hill.

I first heard her voice in a shopping centre when I was really young at that time it had no effect on me. I remember because when I heard it again in the Cod Liver Oil Medicine Ad, it triggered a memory. The song was “Ain’t Got No Life, I got Life”. I started to listen to more of her music after I saw the ad at the time I was grown up and it was a lot easier to get hold of music. I got the Legend Album which I thought was great, it was like nothing I had heard before there was so much diversity in the album. I quickly began to like other tracks like “To Be Young, Gifted and Black” and “I Put A Spell On You”, she was achieving a range of notes that just amazed me and it was all on one song.

Nina Simone is a singer who came and influenced music all over the world in a massive and mesmerising way, there was and will be no singer like her. She is being remembered all the time, it was such a great thing that she was recognized for all her work outside music as Civil Rights Activist. When you listen to her music you notice that you have at least heard her voice before somewhere, because of her popularity people paid tribute anyway they could. Whilst alive her music was being used in the same way. It is sad she has come and gone but she and her music will  never be forgotten.


Adele – 19


I first heard of this girl when she appeared on the news, everyone was raving on about how she was destined for great things. I went ahead and heard her single ‘Chasing Pavements” and to be honest I did not like it much. Around the same time I was just getting into different into different genres and expanding my tastes. One of my new genres was jazz/soul and I immediately loved loved these genres and I continued so recently I heard Adele playing again but it was a song from her album called Hometown Glory. Once I heard this tune it immediately became the no.1 in my 25 most played songs on my ipod. i thought it was great and then I got the album and I loved that just as much.

Her voice is surprisingly good and sometimes you wonder how she can reach those kind of notes especially for her age. For example Right As Rain is a very high pitched song and so her voice is constantly high and peaking. I do like this song, it is very catchy and it fits her voice perfectly. I don’t think we have similar artists in the UK who have the diversity she has and especially for her age she has a big future ahead of her. She has a very sorrowful voice and if someone listen to the album “19” long enough, I will not be surprised that they will cry. She said her self that this album is a very sad one and is about what she went through as a teen turning to adult. Most of it being based on things she has experienced. My favorite song on her album is Hometown Glory, I really think this song is great as I said above her voice is amazing on that track. She has such range it starts from a very soothing to very high and more soulful ad high pitched. If I put the volume on my speakers loud enough her voice gives me shivers down my spine. I like the use of the keyboard in this song and throughout this album they are always in sync, it is amazing. When I listen to tracks like Hometown Glory it makes me think a lot about my future and the things and people in my life, I do like the fact it can affect me such a manner.

It was weird how getting into other types of music got me into listening to music I was previously apprehensive to. I am still am surprised that I listened to this kind of music, so now when someone asks me what kind of music do you listen to I just say “any music that is good”. I do like this album a lot, and I may go out on a limb and say that her voice is similar to the voices of the great jazz and soul singers. A song that reinforces my opinion “Best for Last” I don’t know it is great how her commands the whole song, one thing to mention she has no soft voice. Her voice also has this originality about it and is very very unique and will not be heard from other singers. That is one another reason I love her album the uniqueness of her voice is sublime. It is very strong and has so much range. She definitely an artist a lot people should check out if they like jazz and soul.

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