Nina Rao learned traditional chants (bhajans) from her grandfather in a village in south India when she was nine years old. The chants quietly stayed with her until she rediscovered chanting with Krishna Das in New York in 1996.
In 1998 she met her guru, Sri Siddhi Ma in the foothills of the Himalayas and spent time with her regularly for 19 years. Her childhood was spent living in and moving between many countries around the world and when she settled in New York her working life began in the banking world, moved into organizing and leading photographic wildlife safaris in Africa and India, and now since 1996, is Krishna Das’ business manager and accompanist as well as chant leader on her own.
Nina tours with Krishna Das, and was honored in 2013 to accompany him at the Grammy Awards webcast performance. In 2007, she recorded the track ‘Nina Chalisa’ on Krishna Das’ CD “Flow of Grace – Chanting the Hanuman Chalisa“.
In January 2013, she released her debut album, “Antarayaami – Knower of All Hearts”. Her second album “Anubhav” was released in 2018 entirely crowd-funded. Since 1998 she has supported conservationists in preserving the sacred wilderness and forests of India via her charity SavingWildTigers.org.
She is a podcast host on the widely heard Be Here Now Network exploring spirituality, practice, and conservation of wilderness and Nature. Nina regularly leads kirtan, chanting workshops, and virtual and in-person retreats in New York and beyond.