Hope this finds you enjoying your day!!!!
Thank you for taking a minute to read this blog post. You didn't have to take the time out of your busy day to do it, and so I'm appreciative that you wanted to pause & read what I've got for you today.
And I'm also hoping that by giving yourself a break from the overwhelming world out there, that you'll feel a bit more refreshed when you go back to it.
So let's get on with the show, shall we?
In today's blog post we'll talk more about this first piece in my newest body of work, Becoming Visible: Nina.
This series is meant to honor the female artists who, because they had the courage to be seen & heard, greatly changed the course of our lives in the most profound ways. And they did so during a time when the world wasn't always quite ready for them.
As I was telling you last week, I do want to tease this reveal out a bit. Since Nina Simone & her music had such a huge influence on the civil rights movement — as a celebration, I've decided it's only appropriate to do the final reveal on Juneteenth.
So more about Nina Simone in a minute.
In addition to sharing more about this new piece today, you'll also get introduced to this week's featured print, Dragonfly Springs.
So grab a cup of joe, settle in for a few minutes, and get a big dose of art & creativity!
I talked a bit about Nina Simone's early childhood in last week's post. She was born in Tryon NC (about 45 miles south of Asheville), and her given name was Eunice Waymon.
She took on the stage name Nina Simone when she began performing at bars in Atlantic City, and didn't want her mother (who was a preacher) to find out what she was up to, even though she was doing so to help her family out financially.
She started playing piano when she was 4, and it was then her family knew she was gifted.
Nina's mother was a housekeeper in the home of a well-to-do white woman, Katherine Miller. When Mrs. Miller first heard Nina play, she saw the talent Nina had and volunteered to pay for lessons so that her piano skills could be developed further.
Nina took her first of what would be many lessons from the classical piano teacher, Mrs. Mazzonovich, at the age of 6.
It was during these lessons from "Miss Mazzy" that Nina Simone fell in love with the music of Johann Sebastian Bach — she was convinced that this passion for classical music and for Bach, would lead her to become a classical pianist as an adult.
But as many of you know, the world had other plans for her.
Over the course of the six years of classical piano lessons from her beloved Miss Mazzy, the town rallied around her talent and raised the money, not only to continue her piano lessons, but to also pay for her education at Allen High School for Girls in Asheville NC.
This is just a taste of Nina Simone's story, I'll be adding more to it as we go.
“Everything that happened to me as a child involved music. It was part of everyday life, as automatic as breathing.”
And if you want to sample another of her powerful & uplifting songs, then go listen to this one — it will get you feeling good!