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Julia Nunes

Julia Nunes at the Living Room, New York City
Background information
Also known as jaaaaaaa
Born January 3, 1989 (1989-01-03) (age 21)
Origin Fairport, New York, United States
Genres Acoustic, Indie music
Instruments Ukulele, Guitar, Melodica, Piano, Vocals
Labels Rude Butler Records, DFTBA Records[1]
Associated acts Jack Conte, Nataly Dawn, Pomplamoose, Greg Holden, Ben Folds, Lauren O'Connell

Julia Nunes (born January 3, 1989)[2] is a singer and songwriter from Fairport, New York.[3] Her career has progressed online through her videos of pop songs on YouTube[4] in which she sings harmony with herself and plays guitar, melodica, piano and ukulele.



Nunes was born into a musical family in New York. Her father is a pianist and a composer of children's songs. One grandfather was a composer of Portuguese fado music and the other a jazz pianist. Nunes started piano lessons at age seven before switching to the guitar in her teens. She started writing songs at age 14 and began playing the ukulele in 2005. She also plays guitar and melodica.[5][6] She indicated in the comments section of one of her YouTube videos (see below) that she holds dual USA-Portuguese citizenship.[7]



YouTube videos

Nunes is known for her videos on YouTube.[8] Among them are original songs, as well as covers of some of Nunes' favorite bands, such as Say Anything, Spoon, The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and Destiny's Child. Her original songs have been featured on the main page of YouTube twice, under the username 'jaaaaaaa', which she says was the result of holding down the "a" key randomly after the "j" key, the first and last letters of her first name.[citation needed]

On Good Morning America (June 30, 2008) Molly Ringwald said that she took up the ukulele after seeing Julia Nunes on YouTube. "I've always wanted to play the ukulele, and she completely inspired me," she said.[9][10]

Recent work

She opened four times for one of her idols, Ben Folds in May 2008 at the piano player's request[3][11][12] and performed at the Bushman Ukulele Luau in May 2008 after having won the 2007 Bushman World Ukulele Video Contest. She recently performed at The Knitting Factory in New York.[13] On October 25, 2008, she opened for The Bacon Brothers at The State University of New York at Geneseo.[14] On November 22, 2008, Nunes performed her song "Maybe I Will" on YouTube Live '08 in San Francisco. She was joined onstage by The YouTube Ukulele Orchestra, which is composed of fellow YouTube ukulele players Wade Johnston, Dustin Domingo, Philip Fernandez, and Narciso Lobo.[15] In January 2009 Nunes played four sold out shows in London, England, and was interviewed and performed on BBC Radio 1.[16] In June 2009, she played two shows, and participated in the artist signing tent, at Bonnaroo, the independent music festival in Manchester TN,[17] and a second tour of England.[18] She began recording her third CD of original music in August 2009.[19], working with Jack Conte and Nataly Dawn of Pomplamoose as producers.[20]

Charity work

In December 2008, Nunes participated in the Vlogbrothers' Project4Awesome.[21] Rather than tell YouTubers to donate time or money to a charity, she offered one of her hand-knit hats on eBay, promising to donate the proceeds of the auction, and her own matching funds, to the Lupus Foundation of America.[22][23] After a bidding war the hat sold for US$1,250.00, to Kenny West, a musician from Philadelphia, PA.[24] When she realized the amount she'd have to contribute to match this sum, she asked her viewers to help her make the donation, promising US$500.00 of her own money.[25]


Left Right Wrong

Nune's first CD Left Right Wrong contained all original compositions and was released in the summer of 2007.[26] It was released independently, published by Junu Music[27] (ASCAP), on Nunes' label Rude Butler Music. Following YouTube success, as of June 2008 Nunes arranged a distribution deal for Left Right Wrong with Burnside Distribution Corporation,[28] and the album can now be purchased through some mainstream sources.[29] The 12 tracks (10 studio, two live) were recorded with just guitar and voice, without the overdubs which feature in her YouTube videos. The video of her song "Into the Sunshine" from the CD has over 1.9 million views on YouTube.


  1. Intro
  2. Into the Sunshine
  3. Indecisive
  4. Happy Medium
  5. Balloons
  6. I'm Not Good
  7. A Century
  8. Still In the Room
  9. Blushing Cheeks
  10. One Clock
  11. Dolar Tree (Live)
  12. Into the Sunshine (Live)

I Wrote These

"I Wrote These", was released on October 15, 2008 containing original compositions by Nunes, except for Track 12 "Sugar Coats" which was co-written with her friend and fellow musician Kirk Stevens. Like her first album, "I Wrote These" was released on her Rude Butler Music label and copyrighted to JuNu Music. The album was tracked and mixed at Studio Arts Entertainment and Hilltop Recording in Greenwich, NY by Peter Kobor and Chris Roberson. The album features mostly acoustic tracks, although she is joined on a few songs by a full band (including Todd Haviland on bass and Dave Harris on drums). Guest vocalists include Dan Gocek, Kirk Stevens, and Andy Martin. Other musical accompaniment includes whistling, finger snapping and beatboxing. "I Wrote These" was mastered by Steve Forney at the studios at Linden Oaks, in Rochester, New York.


  1. Maybe I Will
  2. Into the Sunshine
  3. First Impressions
  4. Binoculars
  5. Pen to Paper
  6. Short and Sweet
  7. Welcome Vacation
  8. You Were
  9. Stairwell
  10. Regrets
  11. Odd
  12. Sugar Coats
  13. Roles Reversed
  14. The Debt

I Think You Know


  1. I Think You Know
  2. Grown A Pair
  3. Through the Floorboards
  4. August
  5. Comatose


  1. ^ "Julia Nunes - DFTBA Records". Retrieved 2009-11-07. 
  2. ^ De Blase, Frank (July 2, 2008). "Profile: Julia Nunes While her ukulele gently weeps". Democrat and Chronicle. Retrieved 2009-08-17. 
  3. ^ a b "Fairport teen: From YouTube to Ben Folds gig". WHEC-TV. 2008-05-28. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  4. ^ Perry, Scott (2007-04-14). "Analysis of Julia's YouTube popularity". The New Music Tipsheet. Retrieved 2008-10-28. 
  5. ^ "Youtube - Answers to your questions part 2". 2008-04-25. Retrieved 2008-10-28. 
  6. ^ "Music: Julia Nunes, ukelele diva". 2008-01-31. Retrieved 2008-11-19. 
  7. ^ "YouTube - Do you believe in magic, the lovin' spoonful". 2009-06-07. Retrieved 2009-06-08. 
  8. ^ "Ukulele Wizard Julia Nunes". 2008-05-20. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  9. ^ "Uklele Links: Irish Uke Gathering, Julia Nunes Inspires Molly Ringwald". Retrieved 2010-03-03. 
  10. ^ De Blase, Frank (2008-07-02). "Profile: Julia Nunes, While her ukulele gently weeps". Rochester City Newspaper. Retrieved 2010-03-03. 
  11. ^ "Rochester International Jazz Festival - Day Four". Democrat and Chronicle. 2008-06-16. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  12. ^ THE GOSSIP SHEET: June 23, 2008 | Celebrity Gossip | Entertainment News
  13. ^ "Bushman World Video Contest Winners". Bushman Ukuleles. Retrieved 2008-11-16. 
  14. ^ "JuliaNunesTalking: driving home makes me tired looking". 2008-10-25. Retrieved 2008-11-23. 
  15. ^ "Julia Nunes and The YouTube Ukulele Orchestra - YouTube Live '08". 2008-11-22. Retrieved 2008-11-23. 
  16. ^ "Julia Nunes BBC Radio 1 Interview with Nihal (17/01/2009)". 2009-01-07. Retrieved 2009-01-20. 
  17. ^ "Julia Nunes at Bonnaroo 2009". 2009-06-01. Retrieved 2009-06-01. 
  18. ^ ""Very Short List, Girl Uninterrupted"". 2009-06-26. Retrieved 2009-06-28. 
  19. ^ "Julia Nunes Answers Part 5". 2009-08-18. Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  20. ^ "Pomplamoose". 2008-06-27. Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  21. ^ "The 2008 Project for Awesome!!!". 2008-12-11. Retrieved 2009-02-23. 
  22. ^ "(P4A) The Office theme song". 2008-12-17. Retrieved 2009-02-23. 
  23. ^ "Julia Nunes Knitted Hat Handmade Toque Cap on eBay". 2008-12-26. Retrieved 2009-02-23. 
  24. ^ "Kenny West's MySpace page". 2009-02-263. Retrieved 2009-02-23. 
  25. ^ "Golden Slumbers, Carry That Weight, The End (the Beatles)". 2008-12-26. Retrieved 2009-02-23. 
  26. ^ "Julia Nunes". CD Baby. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  27. ^ "Julia Nunes - JuNu Music". Retrieved 2008-06-27. 
  28. ^ "Burnside Distribution, June 2008 New Releases". Retrieved 2008-06-25. 
  29. ^ "Left Right Wrong at". Retrieved 2008-06-25. 

External links


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