Monday, November 30, 2009
Jango Song Of The Day-Nina Simone
Song:Ain't Got No/I Got Life
Album:A Very Rare Evening
Though classified as a jazz singer, Nina Simone was a very versatile singer capable of many music styles. She was very popular in the 60s and faded mostly due to personal problems. She was born Eunice Kathleen Waymon Feb. 21, 1933 in Tryon, NC. She studied classical piano at Julliard and during the 50s played small clubs in Atlantic City. Her mother was a Methodist minister and Eunice didn't want her to know that she was playing "The Devil's Music", so she changed her name to Nina Simone after French actress Simone Signoret. In 1959, she signed with Bethlehem Records and then moved to Colpix and then Philips. But the prime of her career came when she signed with RCA Records in 1967. At that time she worked a lot with arranger Weldon Irvine and he had a lot to do with her success as a live act at that time. Of course this version of Ain't Got No/I Got Life from the Broadway musical Hair demonstrates her versatility. It's from the 1969 live Recording A Very Rare Evening featuring Weldon Irvine on organ, Al Schackman on guitar, Gene Perla on bass, Don Alias on drums and Emiden Rivera on percussion. This recording was out of print for years but is now available through Mambo Maniacs. Sony BMG has also released some Nina Simone comps. Problems with her husband and manager Andrew Stroud forced Nina Simone to move all over the world. She eventually moved to France in 1993 and was very ill with breast cancer until her death on Apr. 21, 2003 at age 70. Here's Nina Simone performing Ain't Got No/I Got Life in New York 1969.