November 1, 2023

Introducing Nina Simone’s Debut Album to New Audiences


Nina Simone’s debut album, Little Girl Blue, foreshadowed her career’s lasting impact on American music. The album blends the blues, jazz, and intricate classical piano compilations that defined Simone’s style as she became a hallmark for popular and resistance music. Just as Nina Simone reimagined these genres for her generation, nearly 70 years later, her label and estate have released a new way for audiences to immerse themselves in her work with a spatial mix of Little Girl Blue.

Mixing older albums into new formats is an important creative and business opportunity for labels and artists alike. When creating a spatial album, sound engineers require the individual audio components so they can construct a 3D listening experience around the audience. Undoubtedly, the producers from Bethlehem Records weren’t considering the possibility for a digital remaster seven decades later when they first produced the album in analog format.

Working closely with Nina Simone’s estate, BMG approached AudioShake with the original master tapes of Little Girl Blue. They needed stems from her songs so that the audio engineering team at Immersive Mixers could build a high-quality mix. Using AudioShake, Immersive Mixers created stems that they could work with in the final mix of the album.

“Where multi-track recordings aren’t available, [creating high-quality stems] effectively unlocks content that is frozen in time… Things that you can do to their catalogs so that the music can be fresh again, used in commercials and used in soundtracks of movies or TV shows, gives them something that makes a difference in their lives.” — Steven Ames Brown, Administrator of Nina Simone‘s estate (Billboard)

Read more about the work AudioShake is doing with legacy artists like Nina Simone in Billboard.