"My personal goal is to get people to understand that health is our responsibility." - Melissa Etheridge

Friday, July 4, 2014

Melissa Etheridge Concert Review by TBNewsWatch

Source: TBNewsWatch

by Leith Dunwick

There’s no question who the crowd was there to see at Friday’s opening night at the 13th annual Thunder Bay Blues Festival.

Rocker Melissa Etheridge was the No. 1 draw on most people’s list, including Cindy Scheiwiller’s.

A four-year veteran of the Marina Park festival, Scheiwiller says there’s nothing not to like about the three-day party.

“I came here because this is good for Thunder Bay. Everybody has a great time. Everybody has lots of fun, whether it’s blues or rock and roll. Everybody gets along and it’s lots of fun,” she said.

The lineup this year is stacked, she added.

“I love Melissa Etheridge, the Wallflowers, Spin Doctors. Last year was awesome with Collective Soul. It’s all good.”

It marked the debut visit for Joey Furlong, who was convinced to come to Marina Park by several of her friends.

She’s glad they did.

“Actually, Melissa Etheridge brought me here. I think it’s amazing,” she said.

“It’s great. I think Thunder Bay, once again, hosts a miraculous event. It’s lots of fun and a great place for everybody to mingle.”

The headliner agreed.

Etheridge, who took the stage shortly after 9:30 p.m. and played full tilt for about 1:45, had plenty of love for Thunder Bay.

“It’s the land where the sun doesn’t even think about setting until 10 o’clock,” she said, introducing herself to the masses and talking about her ordeal of getting to the Lakehead, first traveling east to later head west.

“We’re going to wake the Sleeping Giant.”

Furlong plans to return on Saturday, when the headliners are Jimmy Vaughan and Rival Sons, and Sunday, when the Wallflowers close out the fest.

“Absolutely, all weekend long,” she said.

She won’t be alone.

Festival organizer Bob Halvorsen said the crowds are expected to rival last year’s record gate.

“As of Friday night, ticket sales are ahead of last year,” he said.

Robert Slater was among the throngs Friday night and said he’s having a blast.

“It’s excellent every year. We’ve been here every year for the last 13 and it’s been perfect. I think what it is, for my generation, it’s like a high-school reunion. You meet people you haven’t seen for years and they have good music to boot,” said Slater, looking forward most to the Led Zeppelin-like sounds of Rival Sons.

Not everyone was quite as familiar with the lineup and at least one fan might leave a little disappointed or surprised – one of the two.

“We wanted to see Alanis Morissette and on Sunday the Wallflowers,” Ricky Martin said.

Well, one out of two ain’t bad.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Melissa Etheridge for United Nations Free & Equal

Musician Melissa Etheridge knows being different isn't a bad thing. The latest in our series of activists and celebrities speaking up for equality, Melissa Etheridge speaks about celebrating our differences.

Video posted on YouTube by UN HUMANRIGHTS

Posted by Yahoo! Music: See It First! Melissa Etheridge Premieres Live Performance of New Single

Source and Video: Yahoo! Music

Oscar and two-time Grammy winner Melissa Etheridge is poised to release a new studio album, This is ME, on September 30th. The acclaimed singer-songwriter's first single off the set, "Take My Number," has already been impacting the airwaves and is now available on iTunes.

Yahoo Music is thrilled to premiere an exclusive live performance of "Take My Number," delivered from the Mayo Performing Arts Center, to whet fans' appetites for the new material. Enjoy!

Etheridge herself had this to say about her upcoming record: "I am excited to be putting out an album that is exactly what I want it to be. I had some amazing collaborators who really helped craft songs and an album that is truly representative of where I am in my life at this moment."

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Melissa Etheridge Performed the National Anthem at the LA Sparks Game

Melissa Etheridge performed the National Anthem before the LA Sparks game at Staples Center in Los Angeles on July 1, 2014.

Video by Eco-Friendly Street Team

Friday, June 27, 2014

Melissa Etheridge Video Interview with Entertainment Tonight

Source: Entertainment Tonight

Melissa Etheridge Opens Up About Surviving Breast Cancer and Returning To Music. Behind the scenes of 'Take My Number,' the first single off her new album, Melissa Etheridge talks to ET about surviving breast cancer, her recent marriage, and returning to music.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Melissa Etheridge to Perform National Anthem at Sparks Game

Source: LA Sparks

Los Angeles area fans! Melissa Etheridge will be performing the National Anthem on July 1 at the WNBA Sparks game at Staples Center. Click on the link above for ticket information!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Melissa Etheridge, Exclusive Interview with Berklee College of Music

Melissa Etheridge '80 talks about performing with the Boston Pops, lessons she learned at Berklee, the importance of being "in your truth," and her activism.

Video posted on YouTube by Berklee College of Music

Melissa Etheridge to Test ‘This Is Me’ in Edmonton

Source: Gig City

Just a little late for the folk fest, a Melissa Etheridge “solo” show would’ve been perfect – and it still is expected to be a breath of fresh air when the 53-year-old rock icon takes it intimate and unplugged for a tour she calls “This is ME Solo,” coming to Edmonton’s Jubilee Auditorium on Wednesday, Sept. 3. Alberta’s own singer-songwriting hero Joe Nolan will open. Tickets are $35-$95 and go on sale Friday, June 27 at TICKETMASTER.

In a statement, she said she’s doing this for two reasons: To “get ready” for the new album – so fans should be in for a treat with untested new material from the forthcoming release “This Is Me” – and to bring “new freshness” to older hits. It has been said that a truly good song must be able to withstand the Trial By Acoustic Guitar. Or at least Piano. Most of Etheridge’s signature songs are balls-out rockers such as “I’m the Only One” and “Bring Me Some Water,” the latter dating all the way back to 1988, so this should be interesting.

Etheridge’s personal life has certainly been as fascinating as her music. A cancer survivor, philanthropist and human rights activist, she came out as a lesbian in 1993 – something of a pioneer in that respect – had one child with her first wife Julie Cypher, with sperm donated by David Crosby, and twins (via anonymous sperm donor) with her second wife Tammy Lynn Michaels; they’ve since split up.

One of Etheridge’s crowning achievements was winning an Oscar in 2007 for her song “I Need To Wake Up” in Al Gore’s documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. She also starred for a stint with American Idiot on Broadway, and still finds time to host a daily syndicated radio show. Aren’t you supposed to slow down when you hit middle age?

Monday, June 23, 2014

Melissa Etheridge Videos from World Pride

Melissa Etheridge performs I Want To Come Over and Uprising Of Love at World Pride.

Video posted on YouTube by LIFEinMOLLYWOOD

Melissa Etheridge performs I'm The Only One, Take My Number, and Come To My Window.

Video posted on YouTube by LIFEinMOLLYWOOD

Melissa Etheridge performs Bring Me Some Water with Serena Ryder, and Meet Me In The Back, and Like The Way I Do.

Video posted on YouTube by LIFEinMOLLYWOOD

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Melissa Etheridge performs Uprising of Love a cappella at Albany Pride

Video posted on YouTube by TheLilgurllove

Niagara This Week: Acoustic Show Will Help Etheridge 'Get Back in Touch' With Her Music

Source: Niagara This Week

Plase baby can't you see, My mind's a burnin' hell, I got razors a rippin' and tearin' and strippin', My heart apart as well; so begins the Melissa Etheridge mega hit from 1993, The Only One.

And while she may have been best known for her passionate and often dark lyrics, she has become much more since those days.

“I am incredibly in love and happy in my relationship. I really love where I’m at,” said Etheridge from her California home. “I’m not obsessed with that energy anymore.”

Etheridge exchanged wedding vows with Linda Wallem, one of the creators of Nurse Jackie, on May 31st in California where they make their home.

After a sold-out performance of boisterous rock in July 2011, Etheridge returns to Seneca Allegany Events Center in Salamanca, N.Y. – this time as part of her subdued and acoustic “This Is ME Solo” run of intimate, live shows. She will perform this Sunday, June 22 at 5 p.m.; tickets start at $50.

“I try to do a solo show about once a decade,” said Etheridge from her home in California. “It gets me back in touch with my songs. It is such an intimate experience with the audience.

“As a musician you need to perform from different places. Change happens – and you want it to happen.”

Etheridge’s heartfelt lyrics and soulful, raspy voice are the hallmarks of emotional singles such as “Come to My Window,” “I’m the Only One,” “Like the Way I Do” and “I Want to Come Over.” Her latest single, “Uprising of Love,” became the inspiration for a new coalition by the same name that supports the safety and dignity of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Russians.

“Music keeps me in the process of examining my life,” she explained. “Life is about learning, about the choices we make.”

The two-time Grammy Award–winner is also gearing up to release a new solo album this fall.

Throughout her career – which spans three decades and includes 12 studio albums plus the new release on tap for September – Etheridge has topped the Billboard charts, won an Oscar for best song for “I Need to Wake Up” from Al Gore’s documentary An Inconvenient Truth, has won a Juno, has been named Songwriter of the Year Award by the ASCAP, written several Platinum records, and is a 10-year breast cancer survivor.

For Etheridge, it remains all about the music. There is an intimacy in the relationship between the artist and her audience, she explains.

“It is an energetic exchange where I can contribute to the emotional feeling of other human beings.”

The creation of music comes from both the left and right sides of the brain, the thinking side and the feeling side, she says. “The feelings are the clay and the thinking is the wheel on which you shape and craft the music,” she added..

Etheridge, who has become a leading voice for the LGBT community headlines the opening ceremony for WorldPride in Toronto this Friday before heading to the Seneca Allegany Events Center for the Sunday performance.

Melissa Etheridge Owns the Stage at the Crouse Hinds Theater

Source: Syracuse

By Daniel Barbour | Contributing Writer

It's a difficult task to go on stage at a cavernous theater like The Crouse Hinds alone with an acoustic guitar and truly make the rafters shake. But Melissa Etheridge proved Thursday that she's more than capable of doing just that.

Well known for her Grammy-winning song "Come to my Window," her championing of gay rights, and her battle with cancer, Ethridge drew a large and enthusiastic crowd for her performance. Many seemed to be die-hard fans, wearing Melissa Etheridge T-shirts, singing along, and shouting their adoration in the crowded auditorium. This was especially notable during the first song, a high energy performance of "Bring me Some Water," during which the audience almost never stopped cheering.

Her set was dynamic, ranging from raucous guitar-driven tracks to more reserved piano ballads like "Meet me in the Dark." With the constant changing of guitars, implementation of new instruments (including dobro, tambourine, and harmonica), and changes in style, and Etheridge's signature raw and powerful vocal style, it would have been difficult for even non-fans to be bored.

The solo nature of the performance, which was done without the aid of a live band or backing tracks, served to highlight Etheridge's skills as a musician. Etheridge played all of her own percussion which she looped under her guitar. The looping allowed her to plug in her rhythm guitar parts to allow bluesy rock solos in songs like "Chrome Plated Heart," all in all showing that this was someone with serious skill.

Also worth noting is Etheridge's fantastic stage presence. She was clearly enthusiastic and passionate during the songs, often cracking jokes and connecting with the audience. Throughout the show Etheridge referred to her long history with Syracuse, having played here on tour since the eighties, and the vibe from both fans and performer over the course of the show was incredibly warm.

After the concert, as fans trickled out of the theater, each one that passed me said nothing but positive things about the concert and it seems that very few if any went home disappointed. With a band or without one, Melissa Etheridge has shown both a talent and a commitment to her fans which ought to keep her concerts loud and packed for some time to come.

Melissa Etheridge At The Crouse Hinds Theater

Source: Y94FM

Click on the link above to see over 100 photos from the June 19 concert in Syracuse, NY.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Primary Wave: This is ME Scheduled for Release September 30; New Single Take My Number Release to Radio on June 23

Source: Primary Wave


(June 18, 2014 – Los Angeles, CA) Oscar and two-time Grammy winner Melissa Etheridge’s latest studio album This is ME is set for release on September 30th and will be the debut album for ME Records. Primary Wave Music will be marketing the album and it will be distributed by Caroline Distribution.

Recorded in New York and Los Angeles, the album features 11 new songs all written or co-written by Melissa Etheridge along with writers such as Jon Levine (Andy Grammer), Jerrod Bettis (Birdy, Adele), Jerry Wonda and Roccstar and includes tracks produced by Levine, Bettis and Mark Batson (Grace Potter & The Nocturnals).

“I am excited to be putting out an album that is exactly what I want it to be. I had some amazing collaborators who really helped craft songs and an album that is truly representative of where I am in my life at this moment,” Etheridge explains.

Today the “This is ME Album Photo Submission App” launched and the link is as follows: http://bit.ly/MEphotoapp

Through it, Melissa’s fans can contribute their personal photos for possible inclusion in a mosaic that will be used for the album cover. Fans will have until June 27th to submit their images for consideration.

The first single off the album, “Take My Number,” will debut on Triple A radio on June 23rd, hot AC on June 30th and will be available on iTunes on July 1st. “Take My Number” was written by Etheridge and Jerrod Bettis and produced by Bettis and Jon Levine.

Photo Credit: MEIN Website

Be a Part of Melissa's New Album Cover!

Source: Melissa Etheridge Website

Click on the link above for more information. Melissa Etheridge is asking fans to submit their picture to possibly be used on the cover of her upcoming album, This Is ME.

Video posted on YouTube by Melissa Etheridge

TCW: Melissa Etheridge Rocks the CSO

Source: Today's Chicago Woman

With a playlist that included mega hits such as “Come to My Window,” “You Can Sleep While I Drive,” and “Bring Me Some Water,” Melissa Etheridge rocked Symphony Hall alongside the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the CSO’s 25th Annual Corporate Night on Monday, June 16.

Raising over $1.1 million, the Board of Trustees and the League of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association along with the generous support of ITW, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Ariel Investments, Northern Trust, United Airlines and Kirkland & Ellis, among over 50 other Chicago corporations, hosted an unforgettable evening.

In between songs, Ms. Etheridge proclaimed, numerous times, how honored she was to play with the CSO while professing how impressive the acoustics in Symphony Hall were as she sang her heart out. And Ms. Etheridge was equally enthralled with the talent of Conductor Sean O’Loughlin, commenting several times on his artistry in producing her songs in sync with the CSO.

The highlight of the night was when an extremely animated Ms. Etheridge took a selfie with the CSO, much to the delight of the audience.

Married two weeks ago to Linda Wallem, Ms. Etheridge commented on her recent visit to Rockford, Illinois, where her in-laws hail from: “I’ve seen everything I need to see and know about Rockford…”

On 10 years of being a cancer survivor, Ms. Etheridge shared, “That experience that led me to a much greater appreciation and joy of LIFE, of my life. So I try to whenever I see someone suffering with cancer – tell them look at me believe in your life and your health. I am ten years cancer free. I created this song ["I Run for Life"] 10 years ago to remind myself this is a road, I have myself to worry about.”

The evening ended with an encore. Releasing a new album – This is ME – on September 30, Ms. Etheridge says, “The ME stands for Melissa Etheridge. Why not? It is my 13th album. This is a brand new song not yet released. A special treat, you will never hear it quite like this [with the symphony]. This is a good Midwestern song called ‘Take My Number.’” And it sure was.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Melissa Etheridge Performances with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra

Melissa Etheridge performs with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Take My Number (audio only):

Video posted on Youtube by angelike1

The Weakness In Me (audio only):

Video posted on Youtube by angelike 1

Melissa Etheridge to Play in Manson, WA on September 6

Source: Ticketmaster

Spotted by Rhondda and Jib- Melissa Etheridge has added another show to her 2014 tour: Manson, WA on September 6. Click the link above for tickets and for more information.

NY Daily News: Rocker Melissa Etheridge Calls for NY to Legalize Medical Marijuana

Source: NY Daily News

Rocker Melissa Etheridge, a breast cancer survivor, calls for NY to legalize medical marijuana

Rocker and breast cancer survivor Melissa Etheridge has joined the fight to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes in New York—but Gov. Cuomo has serious questions before he’ll consider signing the bill.

“As a cancer survivor, I know the ravages of a serious illness, and patients who are suffering deserve access to a medication that can provide them relief,” Etheridge said in a statement.

Etheridge had previously said that medical marijuana not only relieved the nausea and pain from her treatments of stage 2 breast cancer, but it also allowed her to avoid other pain medication that could be addictive or have side effects.

Now, she says, "it’s time for leaders in Albany to listen to the people of New York and to show some compassion to those who are suffering needlessly; it’s time for them to pass the Compassionate Care Act."

A booth asking people to sign petitions supporting the cause was set up at the singer’s Albany concert Saturday night. And she referenced the issue from the stage during the show, noting that she now has an apartment in New York City and considers the state “my second home.”

“Let the governor know that, ‘hey, there’s a lot of people out there suffering who could use some medical marijuana,’ ” Etheridge told the crowd. “It’s good stuff. It really is.”

“The world’s a changing and we’re coming to our senses.”

Cuomo and legislative leaders have recently opened negotiations on a medical pot bill, known as the Compassionate Care Act, with hopes a deal could be reached before the Thursday end of the legislative session. But Cuomo has raised a host of concerns that his aides say must be addressed before he'd even consider signing the bill.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Melissa Etheridge Interview with The Star

Source: The Star

By: Richard Ouzounian, Theatre Critic

Melissa Etheridge says she’s “truly happy for the first time in her life,” which for her is a considerable achievement.
“I’ve got everything I ever wanted right now, so what do I have to complain about?” she asks on the phone from Boston, where she was to perform Thursday and Friday evenings with the Boston Pops.

“My health is good, my career is solid and I just married the most amazing woman in the world,” she says, referring to Linda Wallem, one of the creators of Nurse Jackie, with whom she exchanged vows on May 31 in California.

That’s all good, but the 53-year-old rock superstar, who headlines the opening ceremony for WorldPride in Toronto on June 20, hasn’t always had the smoothest ride.

She came out as a lesbian years ahead of most of her show-business peers, dealing with derision and abuse from an uncomprehending straight world.

She successfully and publicly battled breast cancer, showing up at the Grammys at the height of her treatment, to perform bald-headed as a result of her chemotherapy.

And she survived two very public and very ugly breakups with her partners, the last one resulting in a flurry of mutual accusations that filled the tabloids with delight.

“That’s all past me now,” she laughs. “Not part of the problem anymore.”

Listening to Etheridge speak, it’s interesting to note that the anger is gone.

It used to be one of her strongest tools, drawing something sweet yet bitter out of her voice, like the aroma that nutmeg gives out when it’s rasped against the grater.

But then there were times it could be overwhelming, when the combination of need and pain could make a song of seduction like “Come to My Window” sound scary if you heard it on the wrong night.

“We’ve all got bigger things to be concerned about,” she says. “That’s why I’m so overwhelmed with launching WorldPride this year. It’s deeper and more meaningful right now than it ever was.

“Last summer, we all thought we’d achieved all kinds of victories and the boulder was finally going down the hill. Then we turn around and face what’s happening in Russia and realize the battle’s not over. Not at all.”

Etheridge says she’s disturbed that violence against LGBT people seems to be growing just as the overall acceptance level is rising as well.

“It’s strange, isn’t it? But I think I understand it. The more that people accept their friends and coworkers can be gay, the stronger the gay community gets and the more that drives some people crazy.

“How can the love that one person feels for another cause such hatred in the heart of a third person? I tell you, the world is having an identity crisis because some people don’t realize society is a big crayon box and we’re all different colours out there. There is no normal fit. In our diversity is our strength.”

Etheridge’s two oldest children are 16 and 17, but she says aren’t targets of hatred over having a gay mother. “Their generation is much, much different. They’re not the ones we have to worry about.

“Man, it was so, so, so much different for me at that age.”

Born and raised in Leavenworth, Kan., Etheridge came to a slow but steady realization of her sexuality.

“It was such a slow process of trying to fit in. You went out with boys because you were supposed to and you felt something for them, but it was never very strong and you started to think, ‘So this is what it’s all about?’

“But then on my 17th birthday, I kissed a girl. And apologies to Katy Perry, I didn’t just like it — I loved it. Inside of me it was the Fourth of July. Adolescence is a powder keg anyway, but this was fireworks going off, and I didn’t even have to think it was right, because I felt it was.”

She came out to her father, because, as she puts it, “My mother and I didn’t really connect until I was my 20s. But when I told my Dad, he said, ‘I don’t understand it, but as long as you’re happy, I’m fine.’”

I remind her of a lyric on her most recent album, “Father, forgive me what my mother don’t know,” and she sighs. “Yeah, that was it. You got it. Listen to my songs, they’re the roadmap of my life.”

So she started out on her journey to rock stardom. Everyone in the business knew she was gay (“Hell, I was discovered in a lesbian bar, for crying out loud!”), but no one was openly out.

“I remember sitting around one night with Ellen (DeGeneres) and Rosie (O’Donnell) and we were all saying, ‘Who’s going to be the first to come out?’”

It was Etheridge, in 1993. DeGeneres followed in 1997 and O’Donnell the next year.

“There’s a lot of forgiveness built into rock music,” is how she justifies her friends’ delay. “Television isn’t so easy about being gay, or it wasn’t back then.” The ensuing spotlight on Etheridge and her sexuality was one of the contributing factors to the demise of her long-time relationship with Julie Cypher, with whom she had had two children. They split in 2000, with Cypher “reconsidering her sexuality.”

It was tough on Etheridge, but she survived. “I put it all in my album, Breakdown. It never sold well but I needed to write it. Got it all out of my system.”

Even at her darkest, Etheridge never slipped into substance abuse or addiction like so many of her peers.

She thinks about that and says, “I think because my desire to be a musician was so huge, I didn’t want to jeopardize it. I started playing in bars when I was 12. I saw what alcohol and drugs did to people. It wasn’t for me.”

Then the next big thing to hit Etheridge was breast cancer, in 2004.

“I was giving myself a self-examination and first, I was like, ‘This is just a cyst, it’s not anything.’ But right away, you hear this background noise: ‘What if it’s cancer? What if it’s cancer?’

“Then you go for the exam and you find out it is. Game over. Now it’s time to really think about life. I was angry, then I was scared but then I told myself if I got through it all, I would change.”

For Etheridge that didn’t just mean changing her diet and lifestyle; it meant changing herself.

“I didn’t like myself and I knew that’s where cancer began. Inside, with self-hatred. So I changed my emotional state.”
Within a few years, it marked the demise of her second long-term relationship with Tammy Lynn Michaels, who had given birth to twins with Etheridge in 2006.

“Yeah, it was tough ending that, but those are things that change when you change your life.”

And then she looked up and realized the woman who had been her best friend for a decade, Linda Wallem, was waiting there in front of her.

“I realized she was all I ever wanted in a partner, so why hurt myself and look outside in the world for what’s sitting here right next to me?”

Melissa Etheridge’s Five Fave: Places

4th STREET, LEAVENWORTH, KAN. That’s the main street of my hometown and you never forget the place you started out.

BERKLEE COLLEGE OF MUSIC, BOSTON, MASS. I moved away from home to go to school there. I learned a lot, in and out of class, and I’m glad I went.

TESUQUE, JUST OUTSIDE OF SANTA FE, N.M. I lived there for several years and I still think of it as paradise.

SAN YSIDRO RANCH, MONTECITO, CALIF. It’s where Linda and I got married on May 31. Is there any wonder I’m crazy about it?

LE SERENO HOTEL ON ST. BARTS Everything we could wish for. A perfect honeymoon.

Melissa Etheridge Performs Uprising of Love in Boston, MA

Melissa Etheridge performs Uprising of Love in Boston, MA.

Video posted on YouTube by Jeff McRae

Friday, June 13, 2014

Melissa Etheirdge Urges Passage of New York’s Comprehensive Medical Marijuana Legislation

Source: Drug Policy

Rock Star and Cancer Survivor Melissa Etheridge, In Albany for a Concert Saturday, Urges Passage of New York’s Comprehensive Medical Marijuana Legislation -- the Compassionate Care Act

In a Show of Support for Fellow Cancer Survivors and Other Patients, Etheridge Helps Advocates as They Enter the Final Days of the Legislative Session With Still No Action from Senate Leadership

Albany – Legendary rock star and cancer survivor, Melissa Etheridge – who is in the state capital for a concert on Saturday at the The Egg theater -- called on Governor Andrew Cuomo and the leaders of the New York Senate to pass the Compassionate Care Act. Etheridge also arranged for patients and caregivers from Compassionate Care NY -- a coalition of patients, caregivers and organizations working for passage of the bill -- to collect signatures in support of the legislation at her concert. The Compassionate Care Act, A.6357-C (Gottfried) / S.4406-C (Savino), would alleviate the suffering of thousands of New Yorkers with serious and debilitating conditions -- such as cancer, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, and HIV/AIDS -- by allowing them access to a small amount of medical marijuana under the supervision of their healthcare provider.

Just this week, the Compassionate Care Act moved through its final Senate committee. Negotiations between state leadership are now underway, and while Governor Cuomo expressed some tepid support, he has not yet embraced the measure. If Senate leadership does not allow the bill to the floor for the vote by June 19th, the bill will die, and patients will be forced to wait another year for relief.

In statement, Etheridge said:

"Tonight, I am calling on Governor Cuomo and the New York State legislature to stand with patients across New York and pass the Compassionate Care Act without further delay. As a cancer survivor, I know the ravages of a serious illness, and patients who are suffering deserve access to a medication that can provide them relief. Tonight, I stand with those patients, with their caregivers, and with the vast majority of New Yorkers who support medical marijuana. It’s time for leaders in Albany to listen to the people of New York and to show some compassion to those who are suffering needlessly; it’s time for them to pass the Compassionate Care Act.”

Boston Globe: Melissa Etheridge Helps Launch Berklee Night at the Pops

Source: Boston Globe

Melissa Etheridge had been here before, but on the outside looking in. In 1979, when the rootsy rocker lived in Boston to study at Berklee College of Music, she used to pass by Symphony Hall like any other undergrad living in a nearby dorm: with a slice of pizza and some doughnuts from the corner 7-Eleven.

When she came back Thursday, for the first of two nights performing with the Boston Pops, she fondly recalled those memories and assured the crowd that the relevance of her return to the hallowed hall was not lost on her.

“You are in the midst of a dream come true,” she said.

It was an evening of several firsts, in fact. Etheridge had never played with a major orchestra or even stepped inside Symphony Hall. She headlined the inaugural Berklee Night at the Pops, whose first portion highlighted some of the school’s talent, not to mention the Pops’ dexterity in a program of vast range and feeling under conductor Keith Lockhart’s watchful eye.

Etheridge kept her set short and sweet — six songs, no encore — but they were true to her reputation for being a passionate and invested storyteller. On acoustic guitar, she howled the refrain of “I Want to Come Over” and eased into “You Can Sleep While I Drive” as if relaying a private love letter instead of a song.

The Pops added little flights of fancy, and the interplay between them was particularly pronounced on “Come to My Window.” Together they gave the chorus some extra oomph; when Etheridge roared, “I don’t care what they think,” the Pops echoed her with an instrumental thud of dun-dun-dun.

A technical quibble: Etheridge’s voice was so soft, while singing and especially when speaking, that you often wondered if the sound mix was off or if she was keeping some of her vocal pyrotechnics in the reserve. It diminished an otherwise robust performance.

From Berklee, a handful of students who had won a competition represented its various shades, from the swing and sway of jazz singer Sarah McKenzie’s “That’s It, I Quit!” to Ahmad El Haggar’s meditative ballad “Mawal El Kurum” (“The Grapevine Hymn”), sung in Arabic.

Lockhart and the Pops got to flex some muscle, too. Their highly syncopated and percussive interpretation of “Blue Rondo à la Turk,” Dave Brubeck’s jazz standard, was an elegant flip side to the build and climactic release of “Stairway to Heaven,” the classic-rock staple by Led Zeppelin.

Lifting a line from one of his predecessors, Arthur Fiedler, Lockhart noted that if a common thread united the Pops and Berklee, it was their shared mission statement. They’re both devoted to just one kind of music: the interesting kind.

NECN: Melissa Etheridge Performs with Boston Pops, Berklee Students

Visit NECN page for NECN report: NECN

NECN: Jackie Bruno) - Melissa Etheridge performed with the Boston Pops Thursday for Berklee Night at Symphony Hall as one of the college's most famous alums.

Conductor Keith Lockhart hand picked a group of Berklee students to play their original songs with the famed symphony as well.

Etheridge admits playing with the pops is a dream come true.

"I used to walk by Symphony Hall on my way to get a slice of pizza or a doughnut and I would dream of something like this," she said.

The Grammy-winning rock star attended Berklee for two semesters, and while she didn't graduate, she credits the school with bolstering her long lived career.

"There are things I learned at Berklee that I still use today," Etheridge said.

Students such as Deni Hlavinka say they were thrilled to learn they would be playing with the pops, and on the same stage as Etheridge.

"I mean, it's insane. It's crazy that this is happening," she said.

Student Sarah Walk said, "I was excited, but when I told my parents, they were like, 'We're getting our flights right now.'"

Etheridge just returned from her honeymoon in St. Barts after she wed her partner Linda Wallem in May. Now, she says she's looking forward to her new album "I am M.E.," coming out in September.

When asked how she balances being a newlywed, a mother, and a rock star, Etheridge said, "It's the great struggle of my life. I love what I do and I love my family. I just hope I can inspire my children to do what they love."

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Melissa Etheridge Audio Interview with WAMC

Click here to visit WAMC page to hear the audio interview: WAMC Northeast Public Radio

If we were to recite all of Melissa Etheridge’s musical accomplishments, it would fill our time with her, but in brief, she has been nominated for 13 Grammys, written several memorable hit anthems, sold millions of records, released a dozen studio albums, won an Academy Award, survived cancer, performed on Broadway, and served as a leader in the fight for LGBTQ rights in the recording industry and nationwide.

The latest chapter of her career brings her to the Egg in Albany on Saturday as part of her This is ME Solo tour.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Outtake Voices Audio Interview with Melissa

Visit Outtake Voices to hear the audio interview

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson host of OUTTAKE VOICES™ talks with Melissa Etheridge, Grammy and Oscar winning recording artist about her current tour. Etheridge will make her symphony orchestra debut performing two concerts with the Boston Pops under conductor Keith Lockhart at Symphony Hall on June 12th and 13th. Dennis Alves, Director of Artistic Planning, Boston Pops stated, "We are honored to welcome the great singer/songwriter Melissa Etheridge here to Symphony Hall this week to collaborate with Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops. Equally as exciting is the prospect of having perhaps the most diverse audience ever at a Boston Pops concert!" On June 12th Etheridge who is a Berklee College of Music alumni will be the featured guest on Berklee Night at the Boston Pops which is a program highlighted by new collaborations between the college and the orchestra. We talked to Etheridge about performing with the Boston Pops, her recent marriage to Linda Wallem and her spin on our LGBT issues.

When asked what her personal commitment is to LGBT civil rights Melissa stated, “Well first of all because it represents me; I am an LGBT person and I’ve met many LGBT people. There’s a lot of us out there and I’ve only met a small percentage of us and it’s understanding our society from a point of view, ‘Oh no we’re not all the same’ and that’s the beauty of it. There’s nobody on the outside, we are all a big diverse bowl of soup that would be less so without any of the spices in it. I love being an LGBT citizen and living in these times. History will look back on these times as the greatest movement in LGBT civil rights, absolutely!”

Last December Etheridge co-founded an organization called "Uprising of Love" that sought to establish solidarity and generate funds to support LGBT Russians. All funds raised through “Uprising of Love” went to the Russian Freedom Fund. Etheridge will also perform at WorldPride 2014 Toronto’s opening ceremonies in Nathan Philips Square on June 20th. Her new CD entitled “This Is ME” is due out on September 29th and the single “Take My Number” will be released this month.