What Happened, Miss Simone?


052017031020170311 (R4)

By Alan Light. The story of soul legend Nina Simone.

Inspired by the Oscar-nominated TV documentary, Alan Light's biography draws on Nina Simone's early diaries, rare interviews, childhood journals and input from her daughter Lisa Simone Kelly to paint a picture of the classically-trained pianist who became a soul legend, a leading civil rights activist and one of the most influential artists of our time.

Episode Five: Mississippi Goddam

"There were two things that people in the (civil rights) movement would fight over. One was if you took their books. The other was if you took their Nina Simone albums." - Andrew Young

Music journalist Alan Light is the author of The Holy of the Broken: Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley and the Unlikely Ascent of Hallelujah, and Let's Go Crazy: Prince and the Making of Purple Rain, among others. He was editor-in-chief of the music magazines Vibe and Spin, and is a frequent contributor to the New York Times.

Writer: Alan Light

Abridger: Pete Nichols

Reader: Alibe Parsons

Producer: Karen Rose

A Sweet Talk production for BBC Radio 4.