Neli was born in the mountains of Pshavi1 in 1958, in the village of Shuapkho. At the age of two, her family moved from the mountains to eventually settle in K’akheti.
Although she has spent most of her life in the plains, Neli feels very connected to the mountains where she was born. Her musical talents come from both of her parents; her mother had a wonderful singing voice, and her father was well-known for his panduri2 playing.
Today, Neli is married and has one daughter and lives in the village of Tokhliauri.
1A highland region in northeastern Georgia. Read more about Pshavi here.
2A three-stringed, fretted lute common in all regions of northeastern Georgia. The instrument is most frequently used to accompany ballad singing. Read more about the panduri here.