Nina Kealiiwahamana was born into music as the daughter of the great Vickie I'i Rodrigues. With some training primarily from her family, she soon moved into public performance, joining the highly popular Hawaii Calls radio show in 1958 as a live soloist, holding her popularity with the show until 1974. After this, she went into the Royal Hawaiian hotel during the prime era of popular Hawaiian tourism as one of the leading ladies of Hawaiian song, as well as recording her classic album, Nina, with Jack DeMello, one of the major movers in Hawaiian recording. After her time at the Royal Hawaiian, Nina toured extensively, performing as a mezzo soprano with various symphonies and Hawaiian bands alike, as well as a good number of performances abroad on behalf of the Hawaii Visitors Bureau. In 1992 she received the lifetime achievement Na Hoku Hanohano (Hawaiian Grammy), followed in 1995 by the release of two more albums on Mountain Apple and Surfside. 2003 saw the re-release of the classic Nina album.