A Dedication to Nina Simone
Friday, October 19, 2012 | 8:00 pm
The singer, songwriter, and bassist Meshell Ndegeocello is one of the most beloved and elusive musicians of our times. A pioneer of the sophisticated welter of urban pop styles called neo-soul, she remains unmistakable for the dazzle of her bass playing and the “dark, stoic clarity” (NY Times) of her singing.
Funk, jazz, hip-hop, soul: across eight critically acclaimed albums, Meshell Ndegeocello tested and excelled at them all. Her forthcoming album Pour une âme souveraine (“For a sovereign soul”), due October 9, takes another sharp turn — this time, into the songbook of Tryon, North Carolina native Nina Simone. Simone’s self-directed fusion of jazz, classical, and gospel music makes her a clear kindred spirit of Ndegeocello. Simone was “pressured to make hits,” Ndegeocello has said, “but her own sound was still irrepressible.”
This Reynolds Theater concert will feature Ndegeocello’s homage to Nina Simone and, with a full backing band, interweave those songs with originals from across Ndegeocello’s remarkable career, providing a fresh look at a musician who built a devoted following by skirting the spotlight.