Born in Fargo, North Dakota, Reina moved to Minneapolis in 2006 to study at the University of Minnesota. Early the following year, she uploaded a video to YouTube of herself performing an acoustic cover version of Joan Osborne's 1995 hit single "One of Us" on guitar. Her second video was another cover version, this time of Suzanne Vega's 1987 classic "Luka." The two videos quickly grew in popularity and people asked Reina to sing some self-written songs, which she did starting a few months later. The first original song she shared with the YouTube community was called "Chance," which she uploaded on June 8, 2007. Many other original songs would follow in the months to come, among others "New Girlfriend," "Kindness (Cypress Tree)," "Emily," "Teacher Crush," "Wonder" and "Medium." One of her most popular songs is "Come On Over," which she uploaded on September 27, 2008. The song was a featured video on the frontage of YouTube on October 14, 2008 and has managed to accumulate over one million views since then.
Over the course of four years, Reina gained a loyal fanbase on YouTube singing self-penned songs as well as cover versions of popular songs such as OneRepublic's "Apologize," Coldplay's "Swallowed in the Sea" and Freddy Fender's "Before the Next Teardrop Falls." Reina's fans kept asking if they could purchase her original songs on CD, which finally led to Reina collaborating with YouTube guitarist James Wetzel on her debut EP entitled LET'S BEGIN, which was released on October 25, 2011. The EP included newly recorded versions of her YouTube classics "Come Back Over," "Mr. Piñata," "The Sound of You," and "New Girlfriend" as well as the new song "Let's Begin."
Shortly after recording her debut EP, Reina formed her current backing band The Cidizens. The original lineup consisted of Toni Lindgren on lead guitar, Chris Wiberg on bass, and Clay Whitney on drums. With Reina herself on vocals and rhythm guitar, they recorded their debut album BLUEPRINTS, PLANS at two recording studios in Minnesota, namely Humans Win! in Northeast Minneapolis and Essential Sessions in St. Paul. The 10-track album was released on September 15, 2012 and received positive reviews. It was rated in the top 12 Minnesota releases of 2012 by NPR’s 89.3 The Current. Over the next years, Reina and her band played a few hundred shows to an ever growing number of fans. During that time, Zach Schmidt replaced Clay Whitney on drums.
In late 2014, Reina and her band again headed back into the studio to record their sophomore album. This time, they chose the legendary Pachyderm Studio based in Cannon Falls, Minnesota to record new material. The studio is famous for a number of high-profile bands recording there, among others, Nirvana, The Jayhawks, Son Volt, Babes in Toyland, Soul Asylum, and Alkaline Trio. Additional recording was done at Littlebig Studio, also located in Cannon Falls. Ten songs were recorded for the album, which was finished in the spring of 2015. It was named THE COOLING and was officially released on June 16, 2015 to positive reactions from fans and music critics alike. The album opener "Sweet Annie" was named song of the day on The Current on June 19, 2015.