Official Bio (courtesy of Nina Vidal)
It is said that our destiny is written long before we're born. So then it would seem that Nina Simone Vidal was given little choice in the matter on what she would eventually become. Named after the legendary jazz and soul artist by her mother, Nina's future seemed pre-determined.
Growing up in a multicultural neighborhood of Flushing New York, Nina's musical studies began with piano lessons at age seven and continued through her high school years. In her early teens, while most of her peers were listening to Top 40 Hip Hop and commercial R&B, Nina's musical tastes were a bit more eclectic. Influenced by artists like Antonio Carlos Jobim, Miles Davis, Keith Jarrett, Anita Baker, Sade, Fiona Apple, Stevie Wonder and of course her namesake Nina Simone, she abandoned the typical teenager's playlist for something with a little more depth and musicality. It would all add to her creativity as a vocalist and songwriter in the years to come.
If there was any doubt in the beginning on where her path was taking her, by the time Nina graduated high school it was abundantly clear. With the same zeal and passion she gave to her music Nina focused on her studies. She applied to New York University, got accepted and was even given an academic scholarship to attend the prestigious Manhattan institution. At 18 She moved into the heart of bustling Greenwich Village and found herself in the center of a cultural melting pot. Poetry slams, open mics, late night jazz jams and Hip-Hop cypher's all added to Nina's college experience. She also began to come into her own as a songwriter. Though she'd been writing songs for a few years now, not many of even Nina's closest friends knew how talented she was but that was about to change. While attending one of the famous open mic nights at the now defected Ultra Violet CafÃ© on the NYU campus which had hosted such artists as Talib Kweli, Savion Glover, Erika Badu and others, Nina signed her name on the list, and waited for her name to be called. And when it was, she took to the stage, sat alone at the piano and flawlessly performed one of her own compositions. New York is known for its crowds, but the New York college crowds are particularly critical. Perhaps it was the 3 seconds of silence after Nina finished her song that made her heart pause, but it was a moment just long enough for her to contemplate her destiny before she looked up to see a standing ovation. Maybe her mother was right. Maybe this was her destiny.
After graduating from NYU with a degree in music, Nina has begun laying the foundation for a diverse and exciting career.
Nina's self-titled debut CD was released in December 2007.