DIY Spotlight: Aimee Nolte

Los Angeles-based jazz singer, pianist, and YouTube star Aimee Nolte started playing music when she was just three years old, taking classical lessons between the ages of 5 and 15.

“I performed everywhere I could and always had the need to be trying new things and figuring out everything I could about music the whole time I was growing up,” Nolte says. “Mostly as a kid, I wanted to reproduce whatever songs I heard on the radio and play and sing them myself. I also wrote a lot of music from a young age.”

Taking inspiration from the likes of Keith Jarrett, Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, Bonnie Raitt, Edie Brickell, Peggy Lee and Karen Carpenter, among many others, Nolte ran with her talent and found a home, and an audience, on YouTube.

“I’ve gotten a lot of opportunities because of YouTube in the last six years,” she says. “I got to play a duet with the great jazz bass player, John Clayton, on my album, Looking For The Answers, and the only reason I met him was because he saw one of my videos and came to my gig one night. I also am asked frequently to be the featured artist at jazz festivals all around the nation and I really enjoy that.”

YouTube, of course, offers an outlet for everyone, but standing out form the crowd can be a challenge.

“I think maybe the fact that I came from a small town, grew up with a lot of siblings, and have four kids of my own has given me a kind of relatable nature that lets me teach concepts in a unique way,” Nolte says. “I try to keep things really real on my channel. I don’t like to pretend that I’m better than I am, and I don’t mind showing my mistakes or my thought processes. Even if they seem unorthodox.”

Nolte continues to perform regularly, while imparting her knowledge to others on YouTube, and in her jazz education classes on the Nebula streaming service. 

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