||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (March 2011)|
Heather Nova in Hanau, Germany 2005
|Birth name||Heather Allison Frith|
|Born||July 6, 1967|
Heather Nova was born on the Atlantic island of Bermuda, a British overseas territory. Her mother is a native of Nova Scotia, Canada, and her father is a native of Bermuda. Her uncle, Michael K. Frith, worked for The Jim Henson Company, and was a creator of Miss Piggy, and of the television shows Fraggle Rock and Between the Lions. His son, Heather's first-cousin, is folk singer, Jonathan Frith.
Nova spent most of her childhood with her family, including one sister, television reporter and fashion model Susannah, and one brother, reggae singer Mishka, on a 40 ft (12 m) boat (named Moon) built by her father, where the Friths spent most of 1970s and part of the 1980s, sailing throughout the Atlantic and Caribbean waters and coasts. Since her idyllic childhood, Heather has played over 600 concerts, sold over 2 million albums and has a career of 20 years in the music industry.
Nova started playing guitar and violin at an early age, writing her first song when she was 12. Her family relocated to New England where she attended the Putney School in Putney, Vermont. Following her graduation in 1983, Nova enrolled at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where she majored in film in 1989. She also sat in on poetry classes and wrote music to go with her student films. Later, she gave up film study in favour of music.
After graduating from RISD, Nova briefly relocated to New York City (where she unsuccessfully tried to interest some major labels in a demo), before moving to London, England, a place she called home for twelve years (she already had British citizenship due to her Bermudian origins). In 1990, she released her first recording, Heather Frith, an EP; she had not yet changed her name. The name change came a year or so later, in an effort to create a name with more buzz.
The new name debuted in 1993 with her second EP entitled Spirit In You and her first full album, the critically acclaimed Glow Stars, after being discovered by producer Felix Tod and introduced to Big Cat label manager Steven Abbott. The success of the album led her to record and release her first live album Blow the same year, which she supported by a tour of Europe.
In 1994, she released Oyster, for which she toured for almost two years. Another live album, Live From The Milky Way, was released in 1995. Siren, the follow-up to Oyster because of the hit single "London Rain", was released in 1998, after which she joined Sarah McLachlan and others on the North American Lilith Fair, a music festival with only female performers.
After the release of Siren and a world tour to promote the record, Nova took a break while various television show and film soundtracks licensed some of her songs and her record company (Sony Records/The WORK Group) released various singles from the album, which received only moderate play on America's MTV2, Europe's MTV and Canada's MuchMusic and on mainstream radio, although she was popular on college radio. Also during this time, she recorded a version of the often covered traditional song "Gloomy Sunday", for the German WWII feature film drama Ein Lied Von Liebe Und Tod (released under the international title, Gloomy Sunday). In 2000, Nova released yet another live album entitled Wonderlust.
Over the years, Nova has written and recorded over 120 songs. With the release of South (2001), she returned to the international spotlight with an appearance on the soundtrack of the John Cusack movie Serendipity. She also appeared on the soundtrack to the Sean Penn film, I Am Sam and sung on The Crow. A collaboration with Swedish indiepop band Eskobar, for a song called "Someone New", led to its music video being played primarily on America's MTV. Storm, Nova's fifth studio album, recorded with Mercury Rev as her backing band, was released in late 2003 on her own Saltwater label, went top 5 in Germany, followed by a tour during which Nova became eight months pregnant. She quickly followed the birth of her son with her next record Redbird, released in 2005, again Top 10 in Germany.
In 2002, she self-published The Sorrowjoy, a 72-page book of her poetry and drawings. An album of the same name was released in March 2006, which featured Nova reading the poems from her book set to ambient music.
She also collaborated with the German trance artist ATB on tracks like "Love Will Find You", "Feel You Like A River" and the international hit "Renegade".
In 2008, Nova released an album called The Jasmine Flower, a solar powered acoustic album recorded in Bermuda, before touring as an acoustic tour. In the fall of 2010 she embarked on another European tour promoting her The Jasmine Flower album. On this tour, she played four unreleased songs ("Save A Little Piece Of Tomorrow", "Everything Changes", "Burning To Love", and "Turn The Compass Round") that are included on her current album, 300 Days At Sea. This full-band album was released on May 27, 2011.
Nova lives in Bermuda with her husband, music producer Felix Tod. Their son, Sebastian, was born in 2004.
- 1993: Glow Stars (1993)
- 1993: Blow (live)
- 1994: Oyster (UK #72)
- 1995: Live from the Milky Way (live)
- 1998: Siren (UK #55)
- 2000: Wonderlust (live)
- 2001: South
- 2003: Storm
- 2005: Redbird
- 2006: The Sorrowjoy
- 2008: The Jasmine Flower
- 2011: 300 Days at Sea
- 1993: "Spirit in You"
- 1993: "Frontier"
- 1994: "Walk This World" (UK #69)
- 1995: "Maybe an Angel"
- 1996: "Truth and Bone"
- 1998: "London Rain (Nothing Heals Me Like You Do)"
- 1998: "Heart & Shoulder"
- 1999: "I'm the Girl"
- 1999: "Gloomy Sunday"
- 2000: "Love Will Find You" (with ATB)
- 2000: "Feel You Like a River" (with ATB)
- 2001: "I'm No Angel"
- 2002: "Someone New" (with Eskobar)
- 2002: "Virus of the Mind"
- 2003: "River of Life"
- 2005: "Welcome"
- 2006: "Done Drifting"
- 2007: "Renegade" (with ATB)
- 2007: "Made of Glass" (with ATB)
- 2008: "Ride"
- 2011: "Higher Ground"
- 2011: "Beautiful Ride"
- 2013: "Save A Little Piece Of Tomorrow"
Heather Nova is popular in New Zealand with "Oyster" peaking at #23 and "Siren" peaking at #18 in the RIANZ Top 40. The single "Walk This World" peaked at #19 and still gets occasional radio play.
- 1990: Heather Frith
- 1993: Spirit in You
- 1995: Live from the Milky Way
- 1997: The First Recording (1990 Heather Frith reissue)
- 2005: Together as One
- 2011: Higher Ground
- 2004: Live at the Union Chapel
- The Sorrowjoy, ISBN 0-9542115-0-2
- "Allmusic: Heather Nova". Allmusic. Retrieved 2008-05-16.
- The Bermudian magazine, October, 2001, Page 13. Profile, by Rosemary Jones: READING BETWEEN THE LIONS. Bermudian Michael Frith takes his passion for learning to TV.
- POTSI (archived): Heather Nova Biography
- The Royal Gazette: Mishka to perform in front of home crowd at Snorkel Park Published Aug 17, 2011
- Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 398. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Heather Nova.|
- Official Heather Nova website
- Discography and song list
- POTSI (archived): Heather Nova Biography
- POTSI (archived): Heather Nova Discography
- Biography at Allmusic