With income from her album sales and concerts, Nina Simone had a net worth of $5 million at the time of her death in 2003. Nina Simone was one of the twentieth century’s most recognizable American musical icons. She was a well-known singer, pianist, songwriter, and social activist. Nina was born and raised in North Carolina in a religious family.
She began studying music at the ‘Juilliard School’ in New York City in 1950, but had to drop out due to financial constraints. She soon began performing in nightclubs and hoped to make a career in music. Her breakthrough song, ‘I Loves You, Porgy,’ was released in 1957. This was the start of Nina Simone’s career.
Throughout her career, she dominated the blues and jazz music charts. She rose to prominence as one of the most popular female music and fashion icons of the 1960s. She faced major mental and financial problems in the 1970s, sparking speculation that her career was over.
She did, however, make a comeback in the 1980s and became an icon. She has released 40 albums in her career. ‘Sinner Man’ and ‘Feeling Good’ were two of her most well-known international hits.
Today we’re going to discuss how much money Nina Simone has and how she builds her net worth.
At the end of this article, we will also tell you how to get rich like Nina Simone. So be sure to read to the end.
Nina Simone Net Worth at Death
Nina Simone had a net worth of $5 million at the time of her death in 2003. Legendary performer Nina Simone sang a mix of jazz, blues and folk music in the 1950s and ’60s. A staunch Civil Rights activist, she was known for tunes like “Mississippi Goddam,” “Young, Gifted and Black” and “Four Women.” She earned more than $1 million at the height of her career.
Nina Simone attended the Juilliard School of Music in New York City but dropped out when she ran out of money. After performing in nightclubs, she became interested in jazz, blues, and folk music, releasing her first album in 1957 and scoring a Top 20 hit with the song “I Loves You Porgy.” Simone expanded her repertory in exemplary fashion during the 1960s, becoming known as a leading voice of the civil rights movement. She later lived abroad and struggled with major mental health and financial issues, though she had a career comeback in the 1980s. Simone died on April 21, 2003, in France.
To calculate the net worth of Nina Simone, subtract all her liabilities from her total assets. Investments, savings, cash deposits, and any equity she has in a house, car, or other similar asset are included in the total assets. All debts, such as student loans and credit card debt, are included in total liabilities.
Here’s the breakdown of her net worth:
|Net Worth:||$5 Million|
|Annual Income:||$1 Million+|
|Source of Wealth:||Singer, Jazz Pianist, Songwriter, Pianist|
How Much Money Did Nina Simone Make From Her Music, Songs, Albums, and Tours?
Nina Simone earned more than $5 million from her songs, albums, and tours during her music career. Simone began recording under the Bethlehem label in the late 1950s, releasing her first full album in 1957, which included “Plain Gold Ring” and the title track, “Little Girl Blue.” It also featured her only Top 20 pop hit, “I Loves You Porgy,” from the George and Ira Gershwin musical Porgy and Bess.
From the late 1950s to the early 1970s, Simone released a slew of albums on various labels, including The Amazing Nina Simone (1959), Nina Simone Sings Ellington! (1962), Wild Is the Wind (1966), and Silk and Soul (1970). (1967). She also covered popular songs, eventually putting her own spin on songs like Bob Dylan’s “The Times They Are A-Changin'” and the Beatles’ “Here Comes the Sun.” And she revealed her sensual side on songs like “Take Care of Business” from 1965’s I Put a Spell on You and “I Want a Little Sugar in My Bowl” from 1967’s Nina Simone Sings the Blues.
Simone’s music defied categorization in many ways. Her classical training shone through in every song she performed, and she drew from a well of influences that included gospel, pop, and folk. She was often referred to as the “High Priestess of Soul,” but she despised the moniker. She, too, disliked the moniker “jazz singer.” “If I had to be labeled, I should have been a folk singer because my playing was more folk and blues than jazz,” she later wrote in her autobiography.
Prominent Civil Rights Singer: “Mississippi Goddam” and “Four Women”
By the mid-1960s, Simone had established herself as the Civil Rights Movement’s spokesperson. In response to the 1963 assassination of Medgar Evers and the Birmingham church bombing that killed four young African American girls, she wrote “Mississippi Goddam.”
She also wrote “Four Women,” which chronicled the complicated lives of four African American female figures, and “Young, Gifted, and Black,” which borrowed the title of a play by Lorraine Hansberry and became a popular anthem. After Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968, Simone’s bassist Greg Taylor wrote “Why (The King of Love Is Dead),” which she and her band performed at the Westbury Music Festival.
Simone had notable hits in England during the 1960s, including “I Put a Spell on You,” “Ain’t Got No-I Got Life/Do What You Gotta Do,” and “To Love Somebody,” the latter written by Barry and Robin Gibb and originally performed by their group the Bee Gees.
Struggles and Career Renaissance
Simone grew tired of the American music scene and the country’s deeply divided racial politics as the 1960s came to a close. She grew up in Mount Vernon, New York, next door to Malcolm X and Betty Shabazz, and later lived in Liberia, Switzerland, England, and Barbados before settling in the south of France. Simone also battled severe mental health issues and financial issues for years, as well as clashes with managers, record labels, and the Internal Revenue Service.
Simone, who had taken a break from recording in the mid-1970s, returned in 1978 with the album Baltimore, which featured a cover version of a Randy Newman song as the title track. The album received positive reviews from critics, but it did not perform well commercially.
When her song “My Baby Just Cares For Me” was used in a Chanel No. 5 perfume commercial in the United Kingdom in the 1980s, Simone’s career took off. As a result, the song reached the Top 10 in the United Kingdom in 1985. She also wrote and published her autobiography, I Put a Spell on You, in 1991. Her next album, A Single Woman, was released in 1993.
Simone maintained a loyal fan base that packed concert halls whenever she went on tour. In 1998, she made her first trip to the New York tri-state area in five years, performing at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark.
The concert was reviewed by New York Times critic Jon Pareles, who noted that “there is still power in her voice” and that the show featured “a beloved sound, a celebrated personality, and a repertory that magnifies them both.” Simone attended South African leader Nelson Mandela’s 80th birthday celebration the same year.
Nina Simone’s Death and Legacy
Simone performed at the Guinness Blues Festival in Dublin, Ireland, in 1999. For a few songs, she was joined on stage by her daughter Lisa Simone Kelly. Lisa, Simone’s daughter from her second marriage to manager Andrew Stroud, followed in her mother’s footsteps. Among her many accomplishments as a performer, she has appeared on Broadway in Aida under the stage name “Simone.”
According to reports, Nina Simone was battling breast cancer in her final years. She died on April 21, 2003, at the age of 70, at her home in Carry-le-Rouet, France.
While she is no longer with us, Simone has left an indelible mark on the worlds of music, art, and activism. She sang to express herself, and her work still carries a lot of emotion and power. Aretha Franklin, Laura Nyro, Joni Mitchell, Lauryn Hill, and Meshell Ndegeocello have all cited Simone as an inspiration. Her distinctive deep voice remains a popular choice for television and film soundtracks.
The Amazing Nina Simone, directed by Jeff L. Lieberman, and What Happened, Miss Simone?, a Netflix documentary, were both released in 2015. Liz Garbus directed the latter project, which included commentary from daughter Lisa and ex-husband Stroud, among others.
In addition to magnificent musicianship, the project detailed troubling aspects of Simone’s life, such as abuse from her ex-husband and, in turn, abuse from Lisa’s mother. What Happened, Miss Simone? was later nominated for an Academy Award for best documentary. Simone was also portrayed by actress Zoe Saldana in the 2016 biopic Nina, in a controversial casting choice.
When Simone’s childhood home in Tryon went on the market in 2016, four African American artists banded together to buy it before it was demolished. Two years later, the National Trust for Historic Preservation designated the house as a “national treasure,” saving it from demolition, with the organization reportedly looking for ways to restore it for future artists to use.
Nina Simone’s Early Life, Education, Family
Nina Simone, born Eunice Kathleen Waymon on February 21, 1933, in Tryon, North Carolina, began her musical career at a young age, learning to play the piano at the age of three and singing in her church choir. Simone’s musical education emphasized classical repertory such as Beethoven and Brahms, with Simone later expressing a desire to be recognized as the first major African American concert pianist.
Her music teacher assisted in the establishment of a special fund to pay for Simone’s education, and after she graduated from high school, the same fund was used to send the pianist to New York City’s prestigious Juilliard School of Music to train.
Simone taught piano and worked as an accompanist for other performers while at Juilliard, but she had to drop out due to financial constraints. Simone moved to Philadelphia with her family in order to save money and attend a more affordable music program.
Her career took an unexpected turn when she was denied admission to the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia; she later claimed the school denied her admission because she was African American.
In the 1950s, she abandoned classical music and began performing American standards, jazz, and blues in Atlantic City clubs. At the request of a bar owner, she soon began singing along with her music.
Nina Simone was her stage name; “Nina,” derived from the Spanish word “nia,” was a nickname given to her by her then-boyfriend, while “Simone” was inspired by French actress Simone Signoret. The performer eventually gained the admiration of writers such as Langston Hughes, Lorraine Hansberry, and James Baldwin.
Nina Simone’s Personal Life and Husband
In 1961, Nina Simone married her manager Andy Stroud. In the early 1970s, the couple divorced. She accused Andy of being violent and assaulting her physically. Prior to her relationship with Andy, she was briefly married to Donald Ross. Lisa Celeste Stroud, her daughter, survives her.
Throughout her life, she struggled with mental health issues. She was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1980, and she died of breast cancer in the last few years of her life. On April 21, 2001, she died peacefully in her sleep. Her ashes were scattered across the African continent in various countries.
What Houses Does Nina Simone Own?
Given Nina Simone’s wealth, her house is more expensive than ordinary people’s. She had bought and sold a number of beautiful houses during her lifetime. She paid $1.2 million to buy a 3,000-square-foot, four-bedroom house in the US. The three-story house also has a large living room that opens onto a terrace, a well-appointed kitchen, a spiral staircase in the main entrance, an office, a dining room, and a wine cellar.
Nina Simone Height and Weight
Nina Simone is 5 feet 6 inches (1.68 m) tall and her weight is around 63 kg.
Nina Simone Age and Birthday
Nina Simone was born on Feb 21, 1933, and died on Apr 21, 2003, at 70 years old.
Favorite Nina Simone Quotes
Jazz is a white term to define black people. My music is black classical music.
At this crucial time in our lives, when everything is so desperate, when every day is a matter of survival, I don’t think you can help but be involved.
I had spent many years pursuing excellence, because that is what classical music is all about… Now it was dedicated to freedom, and that was far more important.
Sometimes I sound like gravel, and sometimes I sound like coffee and cream.
I flirt all the time. I like men! I don’t think we can do without them.
I don’t like rap music at all. I don’t think it’s music. It’s just a beat and rapping.
View our larger collection of the best Nina Simone quotes.
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How To Become Rich Like Nina Simone?
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