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About Suzanne Vega


Suzanne Nadine Vega is an American singer-songwriter best known for her folk-inspired music. Vega's music career spans almost 40 years. She came to prominence in the mid-1980s, releasing four singles that entered the Top 40 charts in the UK during the 1980s and 1990s, including "Marlene on the Wall", "Left of Center", "Luka" and "No Cheap Thrill". "Tom's Diner", which was originally released as an a cappella recording on Vega's second album, Solitude Standing , was remixed in 1990 as a dance track by English electronic duo DNA with Vega as featured artist, and it became a Top 10 hit in over five countries. The original a capella recording of the song was used as a test during the creation of the MP3 format.The role of her song in the development of the MP3 compression prompted Vega to be given the title of "The Mother of the MP3".


Vega has released nine studio albums to date, the latest of which is Lover, Beloved: Songs from an Evening with Carson McCullers, released in 2016.


Suzanne Nadine Vega was born on July 11, 1959, in Santa Monica, California. Her parents divorced soon after her birth. Her mother, Pat Vega , is a computer systems analyst of German-Swedish heritage. Her father, Richard Peck, is of British origin. Her stepfather, Edgardo Vega Yunqué, also known as Ed Vega, was a writer and teacher from Puerto Rico. When Vega was two and a half, her family moved to New York City. She grew up in Spanish Harlem and the Upper West Side. She was not aware that Peck was her biological father until she was nine years old. Vega and her father met for the first time in her late 20s, and they remain in contact.


She attended the High School of Performing Arts, now renamed Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School, where she studied modern dance and graduated in 1977.


While majoring in English literature at Barnard College, she performed in small venues in Greenwich Village, where she was a regular contributor to Jack Hardy's Monday night songwriters' group at the Cornelia Street Cafe and had some of her first songs published on Fast Folk anthology albums. In 1984, she received a major label recording contract, making her one of the first 'Fast Folk' artists to break out on a major label.


Vega's self-titled debut album was released in 1985 and was well received by critics in the U.S.; it reached platinum status in the United Kingdom. Produced by Lenny Kaye and Steve Addabbo, the songs feature Vega's acoustic guitar in straightforward arrangements. A video was released for the album's song "Marlene on the Wall", which went into MTV and VH1's rotations. During this period Vega also wrote lyrics for two songs on Songs from Liquid Days by composer Philip Glass.


This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Suzanne Vega", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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