Black History is, like the history of any race, creed or country, the biography of individuals who helped shape that history in the minds of those who lived it. One such individual was pianist, singer-songwriter Nina Simone. A child prodigy, she aspired to a career as a classical pianist. An unsuccessful attempt to earn admittance to the prestigious Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, along with financial exigency, forced her to seek other outlets for her prodigious talent. The rest is musical history and, directly as well as indirectly, a unique contribution to Black history. We’ll explore the extraordinary journey of Eunice Kathleen Wayman: the modest, apolitical Black girl from Tryon, North Carolina, who grew up to be Nina Simone—the daring, innovative composer-performer who blended musical genres to become one of the most respected musicians of the 20th century and, arguably, the most controversial and powerful musical voice of the American Civil Rights Movement.