If you got a team of the greatest children’s book writers in the world together, they couldn’t invent Greenlandic indie pop singer Nive Nielsen. In her case at least, band bios are simply stranger than fiction.
A few facts about her: The first concert she ever played was for the Queen of Denmark on national television; she acted in the Hollywood movie The New World starring Colin Farrell and just landed the female lead role for AMC’s The Terror TV series (2017); and she actually is Inuit — well, Inuk — an indigenous Greenlander. Also, it’s daylight all summer where she lives.
A few more facts: She plays a little red ukulele in a band called the Deer Children with her best friend, multi-instrumentalist Cowboy Jan. She writes songs about love and reindeer and kicking life in the nuts. She won an IMA independent music award in the US, got the much coveted Danish Crown Prince’s Couple’s Stardust Award, was nominated for the Scandinavian Grammys, worked with Tchad Blake, Howe Gelb & John Parish and friends from such indie royalty outfits as The Black Keys and Wolf Parade. Really, I’m not making it up.
What’s even more surprising is that her fanciful back story is matched by her own ability to tell stories or sometimes just hint at them with her warm, reedy voice. Sometimes she sings out with and old-timey quaver; sometimes she sings in a soft, childlike murmur. The songs themselves are straight out of a storybook that never was. They could be from anywhere, and they are hard to place in time. They are hummable melodies with a streak of menace, or cowboy ballads with an elfin side and a sprinkle of danger. They have a way of sticking in your mind — and not just because they were written by the only Greenlandic Inuit indie ukulele player that you can think of. Snow Songs? Inuit Indie? Do check them out!