Forward Into the Past
Sultry songstress Melissa Ellen has a voice that's warm, invitingly sensual, smooth and powerful. She possesses a unique knack for interpreting the heart of a song's lyric and tattooing it with her own personal stamp, whether she's performing her own original material or reinventing the classics. She's equally at home singing R&B and blues, as she is delivering righteous pop and jazz grooves. Melissa uses her passion for making music as a way to help others find their own unique gifts. As a vocal coach and mentor, Melissa Ellen has been an associate at the prestigious Jan Smith Studios in Atlanta, GA for the past eight years. Clients of the studio include such nationally known recording artists as Rob Thomas of Matchbox 20, Usher and India Arie. Under the stage name Mel'N, Melissa released her debut CD in November of 2000 entitled If I Had A Voice. The CD featured one of her most popular original songs, the highly danceable 'Angel In My Pocket,' which recently re-emerged on the top 10 list at Broadjam.com. Now an even more poised, self-assured artist, Melissa Ellen steps out with her latest CD, Forward Into The Past, which showcases her impeccable vocals on an updated collection of classic tunes. In her capable hands Michael Jackson's 'Don't Stop Til You Get Enough' becomes a sexy anthem for holding your ground, or your lover, in a world of uncertainty. Cyndi Lauper's radio hit 'Time After Time' morphs into a poignant love song. 'Only the Lonely' by Martha Davis (The Motels) is bittersweet, tender and evocative, and the Kansas ballad, 'Dust In the Wind,' is reborn with an exotic Eastern-influenced groove. An outstanding cast of musicians, including Buzz Amato and Joseph Patrick Moore, ably supported Melissa on this project. As the producer and keyboardist for the album, Buzz Amato expounded invaluable knowledge, with over 20 years in the music industry, over 100 album credits and experience with legendary musicians (ranging from Curtis Mayfield to Gerald Albright). Supplying tasty rhythms on upright and electric bass is Joseph Patrick Moore, listed as #28 among 100 of the greatest jazz bass players on digitaldreamdoor.com. He proved to be a kindred soul and the main collaborator who helped inspire the direction and tone of the CD. Melissa has received awards for songwriting from Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) and is an active member of the American Society for Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS), a voting member for the Grammys, and the National Academy of Performing Musicians (NAPM/ The Songwriters Hall of Fame). This multi-talented performer and award-winning songwriter has built a solid fan base in the Atlanta area where she's performed for exclusive private parties and huge public events like the Montreux Music Festival and Atlanta's annual KingFest celebration, and has shared bills with Toni Braxton, Caron Wheeler, India.Arie and Geoff McBride. While enjoying a very prolific period of songwriting, Melissa is making plans to record another CD, and she's talking with contacts in hopes of touring during the next year. With the release of her new CD, Forward Into The Past, Melissa embraces her influences and salutes some of her musical heroes.