As the daughter of renowned silversmith, Randy Stromsoe, Nicole grew up in the coastal village of Cambria, California with the sound of hammers accompanying an ever-playing stereo system. Music was revered in her household and she was introduced to a wide spectrum of musical artists and styles in her early years. Some of Stromsoe’s earliest memories include imitating every nuance of singer Ella Fitzgerald on an album of Gershwin songs at age five and playing a collection of Atlantic Soul Classic hits over and over again, studying one of her childhood singing favorites, Barbara Lewis.
She began singing in choirs at the age of eight and, during her high school years, assembled a jazz quartet. With her ever-increasing focus on music, she transferred to the Idyllwild Arts Academy and started seriously studying classical vocal technique, arias and art songs. While studying in Siena, Italy, Stromsoe became interested in jazz after hearing a quartet perform in a neighborhood alcove.
Returning to California’s Central Coast, she continued her musical education at Cuesta College while starting to perform locally as a jazz vocalist. Eventually, she decided to study at Berklee College of Music in Boston, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude. It was there, that she was re-introduced to the folk, Americana and roots music styles she heard as a child, mixing with the hammers of her father’s silversmith work. Stromsoe then began to incorporate these influences into her repertoire, creating an eclectic array of jazz, blues, old r &b, folk and roots music.
Of Nicole Stromsoe, jazz guitarist, Graham Dechter has said, “she effortlessly draws from her musical influences and presents her listeners with a sound and style that is soulful, authentic and uniquely her own”. “Her voice is over the moon with stunning emotion, depth, range and timbre. Nicole gives me goosebumps when she sings”, says Jacalyn Kreitzer, mezzo-soprano and vocologist.