Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Nikara Warren is a vibraphonist, composer, arranger, and educator. Her triumphant debut album, Black Wall Street, celebrates Black excellence in music, while creating “something new and modern from the Black Diaspora music culture in the West.” The provocative and evocative title commemorates the horrific Tulsa massacre when white mobs in Tulsa, Oklahoma attacked Black residents and their destroyed homes and businesses.
As a composer, a musician, and an educator, Nikara is reimagining vibes. She is taking the instrument to the people with her infectious compositional sense, her post-modern patchwork of influences and cultural signposts, and her fearless musicality. Her bold quest comes from being well-versed in the vibraphone lineage, but seeking to adventure beyond it.
Nikara earned a scholarship to the esteemed Berklee College of Music, and she was selected for the prestigious Betty Carter Jazz Ahead program for original composition in 2013 and 2014. Here she was able to study under the close tutelage of Jason Moran, Marc Cary, Carmel Luny, Dwayne Burno and many more.
Nikara has performed as a part of SF Jazz’s “Women on The Rise” program, highlighting notable upcoming women in the jazz industry. In addition, Nikara has performed Black Wall Street compositions at NYC Winter Jazz Fest and at The Kennedy Center. In addition, she has shared the stage with many musicians, including Charenee Wade, Jeff Tain Watts, Camille Thurman,Tia Fuller, Steve Wilson, Hailey Niswanger MAE.SUN, most recently, Kenny Barron and many more.