Nicols began training as a classical pianist at the age of seven and continued for five years. Then she stopped studying until at nineteen, during her junior year of college in Florence, Italy, she was lucky enough to have been mentored by master pianist and teacher, Vanda Scaravelli.
Two years later she moved to Tokyo, immersing herself into the art, music and traditional culture of Japan's rich heritage. There she began sitting in with jazz musicians as a vocalist at the Shinjiku-Inn and the Pitt Inn.
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