Nina Nastasia is a New York City-based singer-songwriter born in Hollywood, California. She began writing songs in 1993 and released her first album, Dogs, in 2000. Only 1,500 copies of the album were initially pressed, with Nastasia putting together the album packaging herself in her apartment. Nastasia sold them at her shows, quickly selling all of them. By the end of the year 2000, the album was out of print. Famed DJ John Peel took notice to the album (calling it "astonishing") after having been given a copy by Steve Albini. Peel began playing songs from it constantly on his radio show on BBC Radio 1. The album, as well as Nastasia, gained a cult following.