One of the first VJs ever on MTV
. As opposed to Martha Quinn
, the wholesome good-girl brunette
, Blackwood's persona was closer to a racy, biker-chick blonde
(although her voice displayed the same broadcast training of any DJ
). A professional harpist
in the Los Angeles
area, Blackwood fell into the world of music videos early, around 1978, and was looking for a way to build a career in that new media form. Around that time, Billboard
ran the ad calling for MTV VJs, and Blackwood got accepted as one of the network's first five hosts .
As I talk today with other early '80s high school males, we all seem to remember Martha Quinn as the cute one. (In fact, her writeup on E2 got completed several months before anyone wrote about Nina.) But Nina Blackwood got plenty of attention for her looks back then -- and the discovery of a 1978 Playboy appearance certainly didn't hurt her career.
After five years on MTV, Blackwood left to do a variety of syndicated television work, such as regular music reporting for Entertainment Tonight and a gig hosting Solid Gold (gag!) from 1986 to 1988. She also hosted TV coverage of the big rock festivals that came in vogue late in the '80s, such as Live Aid and Farm Aid.
Like Quinn, Blackwood has found a second mini-career doing music-related infomercials. She's also hosting an Internet radio show called "Absolutely 80's:" http://www.internetradiodaer.com/ab80.asp.
Other sources: -- http://80music.about.com/library/weekly/aa010801a.htm