“This album holds a special place in my heart because although it sounds quite mellow and sensuous, there is a massive amount of sweat and hard work within it by all parties involved.”
– Melody Gardot
“Music saved my life” may sound like an old platitude, but for singer Melody Gardot it’s exactly the case. At the age of 19, she was struck by an SUV while riding her bicycle and sustained devastating brain, spinal, and pelvic injuries. After months of unsuccessful therapies and still struggling to speak and walk – as well as grappling with memory loss and acute sensitivity to light and sound – a doctor suggested music as recovery therapy. So she took up guitar, which became a kind of miraculous awakening. “I learned to speak again through the murmuring of melodic tones,” she says. “I never expected to be in music, but little by little it was my only space for solace.”
Through ongoing memory challenges, she home-recorded original songs if only to remember them – and when a friend secretly promoted the collection online, it led to jazz radio airplay and a record deal. Such is the immediate and distinctive appeal of her sound. Think it a smooth cocktail of Julie London-like vibrato stirred with pensive and sophisticated songwriting in a style that conjures bossa nova beaches, Hollywood noir, and a sun-splashed French Riviera.
For those new to her music, our featured deluxe edition of Melody’s 5th studio album “Sunset in The Blue” is a wonderful introduction. Billed as an orchestral celebration of her jazz roots, the 18-song collection swings lush torch songs and ballads, dazzling originals and thoughtful covers, and a few Brazilian surprises here and there – backed by the Royal Philharmonic and produced by the legendary Larry Klein (Joni Mitchell, Herbie Hancock). Several bonus track versions go stripped down for mellower moods. Highlights include the instant classic “If You Love Me,” a string-perfect rendering of “Moon River,” and the jumpy “Little Something” – her Latin-spiced duet with Sting. Cool sounds for warm days – just the refreshment we need.