Universal deal sees Nina Nesbitt playing among the stars

Nina Nesbitt, who only took up guitar three years ago. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
Nina Nesbitt, who only took up guitar three years ago. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
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SHE’S the teenage singing sensation tipped for the top after a string of lauded live performances.

Now Nina Nesbitt is set to rub shoulders with the likes of Madonna and Bono after signing a deal with music giants Universal.

The 17-year-old, from Balerno, is also set to record her first full album, which she plans to release early next year, and throw herself into the UK and European gig circuit after a critically acclaimed performance at the recent Rockness festival.

The deal cements a meteoric rise for the singer – last year she was still writing music in her bedroom.

Although she has performed at leading Capital venues, her name appeared well down the bill. But hard work, catchy melodies and supportive tweets from the likes of Katie Price and rapper Example have propelled her to stardom only three years after she first picked up a guitar.

Nina said: “It’s great to have a record deal. Obviously I was doing everything for myself before – the gigging, the promoting – and I was funding everything but having the backing of a company like that just enables me to do more of what I want to do.

“It’s a competitive deal which gives me creative control. I’ll be mixing an album and there will be two experienced co-writers – Jake Gosling and Chris Leonard – who I’ve worked with before.

“Example and I will also be writing something that could well feature on the album. He’s been quite inspirational to me. He was playing smaller venues in the beginning then sold out on his arena tour in the UK – it’s great to see someone who’s worked hard and has achieved something like that.”

Nina said the new album would build on material recorded for the two EPs she has already released.

She said: “The themes are a mixture of love and life, and growing up. It will be mainly guitars but there will be electric drums and stuff like that. I’ll find out when I start recording what instruments will be in there.”

News of Nina’s record deal has been hailed by key figures on the Capital’s live music scene.

John-Paul Mason, promoter at the Electric Circus, where Nina played some of her first gigs, said: “It’s massive for her. Universal’s reach is well beyond what any local label could do.

“When you are with that sort of label, they will look after you and make sure you get on the right sort of bill. It’s not beyond the realms of possibility that she could support someone like Jennifer Lopez.”

Tallah Brash, events and marketing manager at Electric Circus, added: “It shows it’s worthwhile having venues like ours that support singers like Nina. It gives people hope.”