Nina Simone is Really Hot These Days!

Miss Simone

Nina Simone aka  the High Priestess of Soul is enjoying somewhat of a revival and finally getting the recognition she deserves.  Last year the movie "Whatever Happened Miss Simone?" biographical documentary film about Nina Simone directed by Liz Garbus received an Oscar nomination. This year on Sunday, Feb 12th @ the 59th Grammy Awards, Dr. Nina Simone is part of the "special merit" class and will receive a lifetime acheivement award.

I choose to reflect the times and the situations in which I find myself. How can you be an artist and NOT reflect the times?

Dr. Nina Simone*,  was a child prodigy whose dreams of becoming a classical musician were deferred by the color of her skin. Her fearlessness and deep commitment to the civil rights movement gave birth to such classics as "Mississippi Goddam," "Four Women," and "To Be Young, Gifted, And Black." Her approach to music was so versatile she labeled her style black classical. From R&B and rock to jazz, gospel, blues, folk, and Broadway, Simone brought her unique style to each genre. Her interpretations of "Feeling Good" and "Sinnerman" are classics that fans around the world still enjoy. Her version of "I Loves You, Porgy" became a Top 20 single in 1959. Her rendition was inducted into the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame in 2000.

This Special Merit Award is presented by vote of The Recording Academy's National Trustees to performers* who, during their lifetimes, have made creative contributions of outstanding artistic significance to the field of recording. (*Through 1972, recipients included non-performers.)  Other Lifetime Achievement recipients include, SHIRLEY CAESAR, AHMAD JAMAL, CHARLEY PRIDE, JIMMIE RODGERS, SLY STONE, AND THE VELVET UNDERGROUND.


Nina Simoneimage/Getty Images