Nenawas born as Gabriele Susanne Kerner, on March 24, 1960, in Hogan North Rhine Westphalia, Germany. Nena rose to international fame, in 1984, with the song, 99 Luftballons, which is German for 99 Air Balloons. The English version of the song was 99 Red Balloons. Nena got her nickname from the Spanish name Nina, which means, little girl. She got the nickname at the age of 3 and it stuck. Nenaís musical career began in 1977. Lead guitar player, Rainer Kitzman offered Nena a job as the lead singer in his band called, The Stripes. They had a minor hit with the song called, Ecstacy. They did not achieve mainstream success so they split up. In 1981, Nenaand her boyfriend moved to West Berlin and that is where Nena met her new band members. The other members were, Carlos Karges (guitar player), Uwe Fahrenkrog Petersen (keyboard player), and Jurgen Dehmel (bass player). The band, Nena, released their first single in 1982 and it was called, Nur Getraumt, which means, Only Dreamt, in English. The song became an instant hit and sold over 40,000 copies after it appeared on the German television show, Musikladen. The hit also went to number 2 on the German charts.
The band released their first album in1983, and named it, Nena. From the album came two singles, Leuchtturm (Lighthouse), and 99 Luftballons (99 Air Balloons or 99 Red Balloons). 99 Balloons was a number one hit in Germany in 1983 and a hit internationally the following year. It is still one of the most well known rock songs by a German singer. The band parted ways in 1987 and Nena went solo from there. She had modest success in the 1980's and 1990's in Germany. She has made a big comeback in the 2000's with the release of new versions of some of her old songs. In 2007, Nena released a new album and called it, Cover Me. The album consists of cover songs. She released the single, Ich Kann nix Dafur (which means, Itís Not My Fault, in English), in April, 2007, for the movie, Vollidiot. Nena not only sings, she has had a character role in the German movie, Eragon as Saphira. She has also starred as the Princess in the German version of Arthur and the Invisibles. Nena is not ready to quit yet. Time will tell where she will appear next, whether it be with a new album release or in another movie.
Nena has released 29 albums, which includes 2 bootleg albums, 48 singles, which includes both solo and group songs, and has been a part of 8 films.
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