Singer, songwriter















Diane Nalini Biography


concerts2Jazz singer/songwriter Diane Nalini started singing at the age of three and never stopped. Born in Montreal to Belgian and Goan parents, her multilingual repertoire draws from her lifelong passion for jazz, French Chanson, Brazilian popular song, and great literature. “She captures jazz at its most sophisticated and joyous level,” writes Elle Magazine Canada. “I just love Diane Nalini’s voice. This is a sassy, ‘ripe plum in the Italian sun’ kind of voice… She has such sweet and effortless pitch, it’s beautiful.” (Katie Malloch, former host of CBC radio’s Jazzbeat and Tonic).

Diane has released four wide ranging and warmly received albums, and has given gala performances for President Bill Clinton and Sir Paul McCartney. She was one of two finalists for the UK’s Young Jazz Vocalist of the Year in 2001, and was nominated for the Grand Prix de Jazz General Motors at the 2002 Montreal International Jazz Festival. Her most recent album Kiss Me Like That, is a collection of 13 songs celebrating humanity’s fascination with the sky. From the title track’s infectious rhythms, to ‘Cuando sale la luna’ – Diane’s sultry ode to the moon, her original compositions on this album are all influenced by the wonders of the sky and stars. Her six original songs are perfectly complemented by classic jazz standards chosen carefully for this project, like “Stardust”, “Skylark”, “They All Laughed”, as well as her intimate interpretations of folk & pop songs such as James Taylor’s “Sweet Baby James” and Sting’s “Valparaiso.”

Diane&BillHer previous album, Songs of Sweet Fire, is a collection of 15 songs and sonnets from the plays of William Shakespeare, for which Diane composed original jazz, blues, gospel, folk and bossa nova settings. Diane launched the album at Guelph’s “Shakespeare: Made In Canada” festival in 2005. The Kitchener Waterloo Record wrote: “A gifted arranger and vocalist… Nalini made an auspicious Guelph concert debut… the highlights were three passages from literature she set to jazz – “Sigh No More” from Much Ado About Nothing, and “The Lover and His Lass” from As You Like It, as well as Alfred Lord Tennyson’s “Cradle Song.”

In a review of Diane’s second album, Tales… My Mama Told Me, Irwin Block of the Montreal Gazette wrote: “Diane Nalini has the voice, the phrasing, confidence, clarity and control to make a tune her own and turn it into a nuanced thing of beauty.”

Her debut album After dusk was described by London’s Time Out UK magazine as “a gorgeous collection, sung with quiet enunciated power”. “Her artistry shines through on two wide-ranging albums, After Dusk and the newly released Tales… My Mama Told Me“, wrote Canada’s Globe and Mail.

Her music has been heard coast-to-coast on such national CBC radio programmes as The Sunday Edition with Michael Enright, Morningside with Peter Gzowski, Tonic and Jazzbeat with Katie Malloch, and Jurgen Gothe’s Disc Drive. On Radio Canada’s Espace Musique, she has been featured on shows hosted by Dan Behrman, Stanley Péan, Dorothée Berryman, and André Vigeant, amongst others.

Diane has opened for legendary 3-time Grammy winning songwriter Jimmy Webb at Guelph’s River Run Center, and had the pleasure to perform with David Knopfler (founder of ‘Dire Straits’) for the North American launch of his album Ship of Dreams in Montreal. Other highlights have included performances at the London Jazz Festival, the Montreal International Jazz Festival, the Malta Jazz Festival, the Celebrate Toronto Festival, as well as Montreal’s 350th Anniversary Festival.

Diane has performed and spoken about the intersection of music, physics and education at numerous events, including Google’s SciFooCamp at their Mountain View headquarters in California. She has been a keynote speaker at the Saskatchewan Teacher’s Association and the Bell Science Fair. More recently, she was an invited speaker on music and astronomy at TEDx Dawson College. She has taught jazz singing and given jazz and songwriting workshops at the University of Oxford and at the Millennium Scholarship “Think Again” conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Canada. Diane has chaired panel discussions at the Guelph International Jazz Festival Colloquium and the Dawson College SPACE roundtable. She was also a guest presenter at a one-day conference on “Art and democracy,” hosted by Concordia University’s Center for Continuing Education.

Diane studied Chinese watercolour painting and caligraphy for 10 years with the late Virginia Chang. She exhibited and sold paintings with the Montreal-based Ting Sung Group. For Songs Of Sweet Fire, she painted 16 original watercolour paintings inspired by the songs, to accompany Shakespeare’s lyrics in a full-colour, deluxe 20-page booklet.

Diane performed and studied classical ballet, jazz and modern dance for over 15 years. She was a soloist with Les Ballets de la jeunesse in her late teens. She also studied jazz ballet and modern dance for several years, and performed as a soloist in various shows by Montreal choreographers Sheila Lawrence and Claudine Bouchard. She combined her dance and singing experience when she performed the female lead in GLA Productions’ staging of “Fame – the musical”, at the Old Fire Station Theatre in Oxford in 2000

Diane obtained her bachelor’s in honours physics from McGill University, and then went to England on a Rhodes Scholarship to obtain her doctorate from the University of Oxford in applied physics. She stayed on at Oxford for post-doctoral fellowships in materials science and astrophysics. Diane taught physics at Marianopolis College in Montreal, and then held a faculty position in the physics department of the University of Guelph for five years. She then changed careers to pursue her interest in science-based policy. She now lives in Ottawa, where she works in environmental policy.


July 1, 2016
  • Performance at Renaissance Weekend, Banff, AB
    Friday, July 1, 2016, 9:30 pm
    Banff, AB, Canada

    With Adrian Cho on double bass
    This is an invitation only event

August 14, 2016
  • BlackRock Bistro, Parrsboro, NS
    Sunday, August 14, 2016, 2:00 pm
    BlackRock Bistro

    with Adrian Cho (double bass)

August 19, 2016
  • Immaculata Hall, Antigonish, NS
    Friday, August 19, 2016, 8:00 pm
    Antigonish, NS, Canada

    With Jake Hanlon (guitar), Adrian Cho (double bass)
    Tickets at the door: $20 ($15 for seniors, $5 for students)

September 17, 2016
  • Gigspace, Ottawa, ON
    Saturday, September 17, 2016, 7:30 pm
    953 Gladstone Ave, Ottawa, ON, Canada

    with Mark Ferguson (piano) and John Geggie (bass)

October 20, 2016
  • "Intimate Ellington," SOLD OUT
    Thursday, October 20, 2016, 7:30 pm
    The “Back Stage” at the National Arts Centre, Ottawa

    Diane will be guest vocalist on some of the pieces, performing with members of the Ottawa Jazz Orchestra
    Tickets: $30 (Discounts available for 4 concert packages, visit for more details)

December 31, 2016
  • New Year's Eve jazz quartet with musicians from the Ottawa Jazz Orchestra
    Saturday, December 31, 2016, 9:00 pm
    Madisons New York Grill & Bar, 189 Lyon St N, Ottawa, ON K1R 5C1, Canada

    with Adrian Cho (double bass), Peter Hum (piano) and Sandy Gordon (sax and flute)

March 18, 2017
  • "From Rio to Paris" with Ottawa Jazz Orchestra SOLD OUT
    Saturday, March 18, 2017, 7:30 pm
    The “Back Stage” at the National Arts Centre, Ottawa

    An evening of music exploring the connections between celebrated chansonnier Henri Salvador and Brazilian music. Featuring songs made famous by Henri Salvador, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Caetano Veloso, Chico Buarque, Djavan, and Gilberto Gil. Diane will also premiere six of her new compositions in French.

    Tickets: $30 (discount for OJO's 4 concert package, visit for more details)


Kiss Me Like That

  1. Kiss Me Like That Diane Nalini 3:48
  2. Moonlight Saving Time Diane Nalini 3:03
  3. Cuando Sale La Luna Diane Nalini 3:35
  4. Love In Outer Space Diane Nalini 3:57
  5. Sweet Baby James Diane Nalini 3:15
  6. Le Tournesol Diane Nalini 5:20
  7. Skylark Diane Nalini 4:25
  8. They All Laughed Diane Nalini 3:31
  9. Valparaiso Diane Nalini 3:18
  10. Stardust Diane Nalini 3:12
  11. Winter Eclipse Diane Nalini 3:12
  12. Mundos Escondidos Diane Nalini 4:13
  13. Blue Moon Diane Nalini 2:56


The album “Kiss Me Like That” is a collection of Diane’s original songs as well as lovingly selected covers which pay tribute to the sky, moon and stars. The idea for the album came about when Diane was invited to appear on CBC’s The Sunday Edition to talk about Galileo and Newton’s contributions to astronomy and science. She performed live the premiere of her original song, “Kiss Me Like That”, which tells of a relationship gone cold. It gets its title from a well-known mnemonic she taught her students to help them remember the classification of stars. Other songs, like “Love in Outer Space” pay tribute to humanity’s search for life in the universe.

Songs of Sweet Fire

  1. The Cuckoo Song Diane Nalini 3:09
  2. Sigh No More Diane Nalini 5:04
  3. For Love Of You Diane Nalini 4:01
  4. Rain Every Day Diane Nalini 8:25
  5. Desi's Blues Diane Nalini 4:37
  6. Mistress Mine Diane Nalini 4:45
  7. The Fabulous Minstrel Diane Nalini 3:44
  8. Take Those Lips Away Diane Nalini 3:06
  9. The Lover And His Lass Diane Nalini 3:11
  10. The Beauty Of Your Eyes Diane Nalini 5:16
  11. Be Merry Diane Nalini 3:38
  12. She Loves Another Diane Nalini 2:59
  13. Goodbye To The Devil Diane Nalini 4:00
  14. Till The World Goes Round Diane Nalini 3:42
  15. Under The Blossom Diane Nalini 3:41

Songs of Sweet Fire” is a collection of 15 songs and sonnets from the plays of William Shakespeare, set to Diane’s original jazz, folk, blues, bossa nova and funk music. The songs were chosen from the following plays and sonnets:

  1. The Cuckoo song – Love’s Labour’s Lost
  2. Sigh no more – Much Ado About Nothing
  3. For love of you – Sonnet XV
  4. Rain every day – Twelfth Night
  5. Desi’s blues – Othello
  6. Mistress Mine – Twelfth Night
  7. The Fabulous Minstrel – Henry VIII
  8. Take those lips away – Measure For Measure
  9. The Lover and his lass – As You Like It
  10. The Beauty of your eyes – Sonnet XVII
  11. Be Merry – Henry IV, Part 2
  12. She loves another – Twelfth Night
  13. Goodbye to the devil – Twelfth Night
  14. Till the world goes round – Anthony & Cleopatra
  15. Under the blossom – The Tempest

Tales… My Mama told me

  1. Blues In The Night Diane Nalini 5:09
  2. Yellow Bird Diane Nalini 2:55
  3. Sometime Ago Diane Nalini 3:02
  4. La Vie En Rose Diane Nalini 4:24
  5. While You're Sleeping Diane Nalini 5:24
  6. Noturna Diane Nalini 4:00
  7. Mickey Diane Nalini 4:05
  8. Moose The Mooch Diane Nalini 2:39
  9. Les Feuilles Mortes Diane Nalini 4:51
  10. Cheek To Cheek Diane Nalini 3:56
  11. Corcovado Diane Nalini 4:12
  12. Cradle Song Diane Nalini 4:44
  13. Come Away Diane Nalini 3:46
  14. Lorelei Diane Nalini 5:14

After dusk

  1. Stars Fell On Alabama Diane Nalini 3:37
  2. My Funny Valentine Diane Nalini 5:24
  3. Quand Elle Rit Aux Eclats Diane Nalini 4:03
  4. After Dusk Diane Nalini 5:49
  5. Carolina Diane Nalini 4:01
  6. La Mer Diane Nalini 3:37
  7. The Portrait On The Wall Diane Nalini 3:40
  8. La Maison Sous Les Arbres Diane Nalini 5:02
  9. How Long Has This Been Going On Diane Nalini 4:22
  10. Every Time We Say Goodbye Diane Nalini 4:51


Below left is a short interview Diane gave while at the University of Guelph, explaining the astronomical metaphors in Kiss Me Like That. To the right is the talk and performance Diane gave at TEDx Dawson College (featuring Adrian Cho on bass and Mike Rud on guitar).


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