The Record Collection

Nina Simone: Nina Simone At Town Hall

Colpix CP/SCP 409 (1959)

Track list:

01 – Black is the Color of my True Love’s Hair
02 – Exactly Like You
03 – The Other Woman
04 – Under The Lowest
05 – You Can Have Him
06 – Summertime (Instrumental)
07 – Summertime
08 – Cotton Eyed Joe
09 – Return Home
10 – Wild Is The Wind
11 – Fine And Mellow


Nina Simone – Vocals, Piano
Jimmy Bond – Bass
Albert “Tootie” Heath – Drums

Arranged by Nina Simone
Produced by Bob Blake, Jack Gold
Liner Notes – Don Ross, Howard Berk
Photography – Herb Snitzer

Recorded live at The Town Hall on 12 September 1959 and released as her second album for Colpix Records that same year.

The Town Hall is located at 123 West 43rd Street, between Sixth Avenue and Broadway, in New York City. It seats approximately 1,500 people.

[…]Nina Simone’s stay with Bethlehem Records was short lived and in 1959, after moving to New York City, she was signed by Joyce Selznik, the eastern talent scout for Colpix Records, a division of Columbia Pictures.

Months after the release of her debut LP for the label (1959‘s The Amazing Nina Simone), Nina was performing at her first major New York City venue, the mid-Manhattan-located Town Hall.

Sensing that her live performances would capture the essential spontaneity of her artistry, Colpix opted to record her September 12, 1959 show.

“You Can Have Him,” a glorious torch song previously cut by Peggy Lee and Ella Fitzgerald, was one of the highlights of the evening.

The song opened with a dazzling keyboard arpeggio that would become her signature for decades.

So momentous was the Town Hall performance that it inspired some of the same musicians, featuring the vocals of Nina’s only daughter, Lisa Simone Kelly, to do a tribute to a sold out audience over forty five years later.

Eunice Kathleen Waymon (aka Nina Simone) (February 21, 1933 – April 21, 2003).