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Download What Happened, Miss Simone?: A Biography Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample What Happened, Miss Simone?: A Biography Audiobook, by Alan Light Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Alan Light Narrator: Adenrele Ojo Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: February 2016 ISBN: 9780399566325
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An intimate and vivid look inside Nina Simone’s legendary life as a fiery singer, demanding mother, and tirelessly committed civil-rights activist, told using previously buried material from the Netflix/Radical Media documentary What Happened, Miss Simone?

From music journalist and former Spin and Vibe editor-in-chief Alan Light comes a biography of incandescent soul icon and activist Nina Simone, drawn from a trove of rare archival materials, including Simone’s remarkable private diaries, published alongside Radical Media’s much buzzed-about documentary of the same name, which debuted to great acclaim at Sundance in January 2015 and will premiere on Netflix this summer.

What Happened, Miss Simone? explores the many facets of this complicated and gifted woman, excavating her lifelong passion for classical music and painful rejection from that field, along with her soaring success as a soul singer and the stresses put upon her as an African American pushing against the tide of racial discrimination in civil rights battles. Harnessing the singular voice of Miss Simone herself through her private correspondence and incorporating candid reflections from those who knew her best, including her only daughter, Light brings us face to face with a legend, examining the very public persona and very private struggles of one of our greatest artists.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A spellbinding portrait…Alan Light resurrects the High Priestess of Soul with profound sympathy and masterful storytelling.”

    Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, New York Times bestselling author

  • “Simone was a genius. Her triumphs and troubles share the stage in Light’s pitch-perfect biography.”


  • “[Nina Simone’s] willingness to speak her mind shines out of every page of Alan Light’s biography.”

    Times (London)

  • [An] engaging biography…As Light shows, her intensity fueled music that reflected and transformed the volatile America of her times.”

    Rolling Stone

  • “A probing account of Simone’s inner struggles…Far from detracting from her civil-rights heroism, it makes that achievement all the more astonishing.”

    New York Review of Books

  • “Alan Light has written an electrifying, humane, and dimensional biography…I learned so much about a woman I admire, the woman whose fiery piano and voice is a powerful reminder of what artists are meant to do! What Happened, Miss Simone? captures how unique and real she was on every page.”

    Alicia Keys, multiaward–winning singer, songwriter, producer and actress

  • “Adenrele Ojo narrates the biography of jazz singer Nina Simone…When the biography includes song lyrics or a letter, Ojo makes Simone’s own voice sound stern, fierce, or sultry. Overall, however, Ojo maintains a distance that allows listeners to observe Simone and empathize as the ups and downs of her life unfold.”


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About the Narrator

Adenrele Ojo is an actress, dancer, and audiobook narrator. She made her onscreen debut in My Little Girl, starring Jennifer Lopez, and has since starred in several other films. She has also performed extensively with the Philadelphia Dance Company. Currently she works as the general manager of Tupu Kweli Theatre Company in New York, which is under the artistic direction of Curtiss Cook.