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Melanie, Friends, and Family: An Evening of Songs and Stories

Americana and Folk

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Melanie, who became the voice of an era in one magical instant onstage at Woodstock, has been putting the pieces in order. Pieces of a career, scattered by the winds of experience and assembled again by the force of love into the most personal and brilliant moments of her musical journey. Melanie is poised to enlighten new generations about what it means to sing with both passion and eloquence, to write at once with intelligence and emotion, and to inspire through song . . . and nobody does this better than Melanie.

With guitar in hand and a talent that combined amazing vocal equipment, disarming humor, and a vibrant engagement with life, she was booked as the first solo pop/rock artist ever to appear from the Royal Albert Hall to Carnegie Hall. She has also performed at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York, the Sydney Opera House, and before the General Assembly of the United Nations, where her performances were greeted with standing ovations by the delegates.

Some of the top television hosts of all time (Ed Sullivan, Johnny Carson, and Dick Cavett) battled to book her. After Melanie’s stunning performance on his show, Sullivan commented that he had not seen such a “dedicated and responsive audience since Elvis Presley.”

UNICEF made her its spokesperson; Jimi Hendrix’s father introduced her to the multitude assembled for the twentieth anniversary of Woodstock. Her records continued to sell—more than eighty million to date. She has had her songs covered by singers as diverse as Cher, Dolly Parton, and Macy Gray. She has raised a family, won an Emmy Award, opened a restaurant, and written a musical about Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane. She has, in short, lived a rare life. But all of it was just a prelude to what was about to come.

“For the first time, I’m not afraid to voice exactly what I feel. I used to feel that I didn’t want to say too much, but now I can say anything. I feel like a person who’s never been heard. Maybe people think they’ve heard me, but they never really have. I’m a new artist who is having so much fun with my voice—a person shouldn’t be allowed to have so much fun. I’m the woman I wanted to be when I was sixteen and going for Edith Piaf. It’s me—I’m back.”

Hard to disagree that Melanie has earned her place alongside Joan Baez, Judy Collins, Joni Mitchell and Marianne Faithfull in the pantheon of iconic female singers.

The Independent

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