[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Laura_Nyro_1394.gif]]
-> ''"I donít 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 was an American SingerSongwriter and pianist. She wrote albums acclaimed by the critics whose songs were later covered by singers and bands like Music/BarbraStreisand and the Fifth Dimension (the latter had a career almost propelled by her songs, reaching more success than Nyro ever did herself).

One of her first songs, "And When I Die", was sold to Peter, Paul & Mary, 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, considering that, on one hand, there seemed to be a lot of booing, and, on the other, there were people actually enjoying the music (she was accompanied by her backing band and a couple of doo-wop singers, which probably didn't help, considering the spirit of the times).

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.

A year later, 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 was issued in 1970 and titled ''Christmas And The Beads Of Sweat'', 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, [[DownerEnding 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. She is also considered a precursor to female eccentric artists such as Music/KateBush and Music/ToriAmos.

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!!Tropes in her work and life:

* BigApplesauce: The songs on ''New York Tendaberry'' either take place in or are influenced by said city.
* 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, Gospel and Rock.
* GreenAesop: Some of the songs on ''Mother's Spiritual''.
* LighterAndSofter: the CoverAlbum. ''Mother's Spiritual'' is this UpToEleven.
* LyricalDissonance: "And When I Die", an upbeat song which also [[{{Foreshadowing}} foreshadows the birth of her only child]].
* MoodWhiplash: The song "Save The Country" and the upbeat section of "Time And Love" on ''New York Tendaberry''.
* NoodleIncident: The Monterey Pop Festival performance was kinda like this till recently.
* {{Neologism}}: The word "surry" (spelled different from and not to be confused with "surrey"), sung in "Stoned Soul Picnic".
* OneWomanSong: "Emmie".
* ProtestSong: Her song, "Broken Rainbow", for the documentary with the same name.
* 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: "Captain Saint Lucifer" has lines like these:
--> "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.
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