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Zola Jesus

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Biography

Merrill, Wisconsin, USA (2008 – present)

Zola Jesus is the stage name of Russian-American Nika Roza Danilova (born 11 April 1989 in Phoenix, Arizona and raised in Merrill, Wisconsin, USA). Her music style combines , , , , and influences.

Nika Roza Danilova was raised in Merrill, Wisconsin, on over 100 acres of forest. Danilova started singing early on, buying voice lesson tapes and opera sheet music at the age of 7; soon she began working with a vocal coach. It was not her parents’ idea: “I begged them to do it. For some reason, I really wanted to sing opera even though I wasn’t really exposed to it as a kid. I think my little baby toddler mind heard some opera song and then became fixated on how powerful it sounded,” she later remembered. Danilova started performing opera when she was 10 years old, but experienced serious psychological difficulties. “I would too often lose my voice before performances due to anxiety, and was so hard on myself. I would beat myself up about any imperfections or flaws in my voice. I was such a perfectionist, and my voice was still so young so it couldn’t do everything I wanted it to, and I resented myself for that. But since performing as Zola Jesus it’s been getting easier,” she later recalled.

In her teens, Danilova started to experiment in a more rock-orientated format. By naming her alter ego after Jesus Christ and the French writer Émile Zola she said she consciously wanted to alienate peers. “It worked perfectly – a lot of people wouldn’t even say Zola Jesus because they thought it was sacrilegious”, she said in an interview.

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  • ChateauDeChat

    So good!

    13 Mar 9:08pm Reply
  • gah1amaral

    Curtam Zola Jesus Brasil ! primeira fan page dedicado a cantora > https://www.facebook.com/ZolaJesusBR

    24 Feb 9:46pm Reply
  • gah1amaral

    Hope she release another b-sides with the next singles

    16 Feb 5:13pm Reply
  • flou-rish

    TAIGA: This is what it sounds like when an artist matures, discovers a confidence they perhaps never knew they had, and return, revitalised. (The 405) ♥♥♥♥

    16 Feb 12:59am Reply
  • CookiePolice

    Compass is great. could have easily replaced Long Way Down.

    15 Feb 5:05pm Reply
  • johnonymous

    Compass is incredible, everyone should get together and petition she unleash the rest of the Taiga demos.

    14 Feb 4:19am Reply
  • colorful0

    The whole quote : "The day the record came out, and the weeks surrounding were some of the darkest. In all honesty, i resented how people thought the record was a bid at commercial success - based on some out-of-context quotes and headlines made to sensationalize my innocent efforts of creativity. [...] it only reinforced my lack of desire to participate in civilization." - Zola Jesus. thank you guys

    12 Feb 4:44pm Reply
  • nonnen8

    Judging an artist by his musical preferences is so obnoxious and irrelevant. One can be an artist creating most alternative music in the world and still be a fan of some major mainstream acts only. [4]

    12 Feb 3:08pm Reply
  • gah1amaral

    Judging an artist by his musical preferences is so obnoxious and irrelevant. One can be an artist creating most alternative music in the world and still be a fan of some major mainstream acts only. [3]

    12 Feb 3:35am Reply
  • gah1amaral

    GOD. I'm so fucking tired of coming here and seeing all of this shit comments people make on Taiga. Don't like it? then don't. fucking. listen to it. [2]

    12 Feb 3:34am Reply
  • AlanisParodi

    GOD. I'm so fucking tired of coming here and seeing all of this shit comments people make on Taiga. Don't like it? then don't. fucking. listen to it. I don't care if it's your opinion or that you have a right to express it. She worked really hard on this album and was extremely anxious when she released it. And now just because your pretentious ass don't like it or think it's "mainstream" doesn't mean it's not good or that she lost her essence. Go ramble elsewhere, her fans don't need to hear it.

    11 Feb 8:12pm Reply
  • trent576

    Judging an artist by his musical preferences is so obnoxious and irrelevant. One can be an artist creating most alternative music in the world and still be a fan of some major mainstream acts only.[2]

    10 Feb 5:54pm Reply
  • music-o-maniac

    Judging an artist by his musical preferences is so obnoxious and irrelevant. One can be an artist creating most alternative music in the world and still be a fan of some major mainstream acts only. On the other hand - Compass really should be on Taiga, but I guess I wouldn't leave out any of the songs instead, even though I am not really a fan of "Dust" or "It's not over".

    10 Feb 12:57pm Reply
  • clash_vinny

    @charlie_charl more respect please, taiga was released 4 months ago, get over it

    8 Feb 9:36pm Reply
  • gah1amaral

    Compass is amazing

    7 Feb 2:48pm Reply
  • MarcusLMosnter

    Compass is indeed better than some songs on the album, like Long Way Down for example

    6 Feb 6:33am Reply
  • AlanisParodi

    Compass <3 so unexpected!

    5 Feb 10:19pm Reply
  • colorful0

    oh my god compass is so good. why is it not on the album?

    5 Feb 6:06pm Reply
  • flintxxx

    so much love. i feel she puts her whole soul into her music.

    4 Feb 8:26pm Reply
  • AlanisParodi

    new http://www.lastfm.com.br/music/Zola+Jesus/+images/103301383 http://www.lastfm.com.br/music/Zola+Jesus/+images/103301329

    4 Feb 5:58pm Reply
  • All 1872 shouts