-> ''"I dont think you should categorize yourself as an artist. You should allow yourself to grow. Growth is the nature of the creative process. You have to accept it, respect it, and move on."''
-->-- From an interview with Bruce Pollock.

Laura Nyro (October 18, 1947 April 8, 1997) was an American pop SingerSongwriter. She wrote albums acclaimed by the critics and songs that were later covered by singers and bands like Music/BarbraStreisand and the Fifth Dimension (the latter had a career almost propelled by her songs, enjoying more commercial success than Nyro ever did herself).

One of her first songs, "And When I Die", was sold to Music/PeterPaulAndMary, since she was under the management of Artie Mogull (she also recorded her debut ''More Than a New Discovery'', which was practically ignored). Later she got rid of him when she sued him due to her being taken and protected by David Geffen. She performed at the Monterey Pop Festival, but the performance was strangely mixed in terms of reception; Nyro herself believed that she had been massively booed, but filmmaker D.A. Pennebaker, who documented the festival, found no such negative reaction in his footage of her performance.

She signed a contract with Creator/ColumbiaRecords, receiving greater artistic control. She then released, in 1968, what is generally considered to be her greatest album, ''Eli and the Thirteenth Confession'', centered around the themes of love, passion, romance, drugs and death. Also, an unusual thing happened to the lyrics sheet (itself still quite rare in 1968): copies of it were perfumed, and fans reported that it still has a pleasant aroma nowadays.

The following year, she released the album ''New York Tendaberry''. It achieved greater success commercially (but not to the point of being lucrative) and critically. It is also a bit DarkerAndEdgier compared to the predecessor, but also more sensual.

Her fourth album, ''Christmas and the Beads of Sweat'', was issued in 1970, concluding the "unofficial" trilogy that had started with "Eli". She retired from music business a year later (after releasing her most famous album, ironically a CoverAlbum titled ''Gonna Take a Miracle''), while having a short-lived relationship with Music/JacksonBrowne and, later, marrying to a Vietnam War veteran and carpenter, David Bianchini.

Five years later, she returned with a new album, ''Smile'', after ending her marriage and her mother dying from ovarian cancer at the age of 49. She then embarked on a tour and, two years later, released another album ''Nested''. The latter was recorded while she was pregnant with her only child. In the early 1980s, she started a relationship with Maria Desiderio, a painter, which lasted for the rest of her life.

She returned in 1984 with ''Mother's Spiritual'', and four years later, she embarked on a tour dedicated to the animal rights movement. Her final album of original material was ''Walk the Dog and Light the Light'', released in 1993. She received new offers for film and soundtrack songs, but she refused all of them , with the exception of a song to an Academy Award-winning documentary called "Broken Rainbow" (which got the same title), about the unjust relocation of Navajo people.

She died on April 8, 1997, at 49, [[GenerationXerox at the same age and with the same disease (ovarian cancer) that had claimed her mother]].

Her legacy and influence is acknowledged by artists such as Music/ToddRundgren (who wrote a song about her, "Baby, Let's Swing", and assisted in the recording of ''Mother's Spiritual'', being also great friends with each other), Music/JoniMitchell, Rickie Lee Jones, Music/EltonJohn, and Music/SteelyDan, among others. Vocalists Judy Kuhn and Audra [=McDonald=] and jazz pianist-arranger Billy Childs have recorded respective tributes covering Nyro's music, and at least one music theory scholar has conducted extensive analysis proving Nyro to be the link from the Great American Songbook compositional style to the 1960s.

!!Tropes in her work and life:

* BigApplesauce: The songs on ''New York Tendaberry'' either take place in or are influenced by said city.
* BiTheWay: Nyro was romantically involved with both men and women over the course of her lifetime, and her work reflects as much. Her heralded 1968 album ''Eli and the Thirteenth Confession'' notably includes both "Emmie" and "The Confession"; the former is a love song about a woman, while the latter is one about a man.
* BirthDeathJuxtaposition: The theme of "And When I Die".
-->And when I die
-->and when I'm dead, dead and gone,
-->There'll be one child born and
-->a world to carry on, to carry on
* BreakupSong: "You Don't Love Me When I Cry".
* CarefulWithThatAxe: On her most "operatic" moments.
* CoverAlbum: ''Gonna Take a Miracle''.
* DarkerAndEdgier: ''New York Tendaberry''.
* EpicRocking: "Map to the Treasure" and "Christmas in My Soul".
* FadingIntoTheNextSong: "Upstairs by a Chinese Lamp" → "Map to the Treasure".
* GenreBusting: ''Eli and the Thirteenth Confession'', which incorporates elements of Jazz, Soul, Broadway, Gospel and Rock.
* GreenAesop: Some of the songs on ''Mother's Spiritual''.
* LighterAndSofter: the CoverAlbum. ''Mother's Spiritual'' is this UpToEleven.
* NoHitWonder: While other artists had hits with her songs (see CoveredUp on the YMMV page), her own highest-charting single (a CoverVersion of "Up on the Roof", from ''Christmas and the Beads of Sweat'') peaked at #92 pop and #30 AC.
* {{Neologism}}: The word "surry" (spelled different from and not to be confused with "surrey"), sung in "Stoned Soul Picnic".
* OdeToIntoxication: "Sweet Blindness".
* OneWomanSong: "Emmie".
* ProtestSong: Her song, "Broken Rainbow", for the documentary with the same name.
** "Christmas in My Soul" combines this with AntiChristmasSong.
* SelfBackingVocalist: In some of her songs.
* SomethingBlues: "Billy's Blues", "Wedding Bell Blues" and "Woman's Blues".
* TrainSong: "Been on a Train" and "Poverty Train".
* UrExample: Her song "Emmie" is considered Pop's first lesbian love song.
* WhenImGoneSong: "And When I Die".
* WordSaladLyrics: A large percentage of Nyro's early output fits this trope. An example from "Captain Saint Lucifer":
--> "He gives to me
--> Buckles off shingles
--> Off a cockleshell on norway basin
--> Coke and tuna
--> Boots and roses from russia
--> Now I'll live and die and rise.