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Nikka Costa Biography

Home > Music > C > Costa, Nikka > Biography

Born: 1972
Years Active: 1981-present
Genres: R&B, Blue-Eyed Soul, Pop, Rock

Nikka Costa was born June 4, 1972 in Tokyo, Japan and is a singer whose music combines elements of funk, soul, and blues. Her father Don Costa was a notable producer and a musician with many connections in the music business. During her childhood Costa was surrounded by famous musicians and traveled around the world with her father.

At age 5 Costa recorded a single with Hawaiian singer Don Ho. Italian producers Danny B. Besquet and Tony Renis were working with her father on the album Don Costa Plays The Beatles when they had a brainstorm to produce an album with Nikka singing while her father played acoustic guitar. The album was well received in Europe and Costa became known as a child star.

Costa's solo music career began in 1981, when she recorded the song "(Out Here) On My Own" from the musical “Fame.” The song peaked at #1 on the Italian, Spanish, and French Singles charts. Costa's aforementioned self-titled debut album, “Nikka Costa,” was released in 1981, followed by a world tour. Costa's second album, “Fairy Tales” was released in 1983. The pop album, “Here I Am... Yes, It's Me,” was released to fulfill a contractual obligation in 1989, though it still topped some charts in Europe

After graduating from high school, Costa decided to move away from pop and moved toward funk and soul, becoming influenced by Motown artists. While already a music business veteran, in the early 1990s Costa transitioned away from childhood pop to mature soul. She married Australian producer/songwriter Justin Stanley and moved to his country. She formed the short lived band Little Mona & The Shag Daddies and the more successful Sugarbone, the latter of which toured Australia in 1994.

After Sugarbone, she signed to the Mushroom label in Australia. In 1996 Costa released the album “Butterfly Rocket” in Australia, where it reached the Top 20.

In 2001, Costa's career began to take off in the U.S. with the album, “Everybody Got Their Something,” which peaked at #120 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart. In 2005, Costa released the album “can'tneverdidnothin'.”

Her next album, “Pebble to a Pearl,” was issued in 2008. The album was produced by Costa's husband Justin Stanley

Costa co-wrote the song, “Diamonds Made from Rain,” on Eric Clapton's 2010 album “Clapton.” Her six-track EP, “PRO★WHOA!” was released in 2011.