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Nashville, Tennessee, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2016 | INDIE

Nashville, Tennessee, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2016
Band R&B Jam




"MELD Aims To Be The Heart Of It, Rather Than A Part Of It, On Self-Titled Debut [Interview]"

Melanie Dewey, aka MELD, is an artist who can’t quite be nailed down. She has worked consistently in the Nashville music scene without getting sucked into the commercialized Broadway sound. She takes influence from the likes of Papadosio‘s Anthony Thogmartin (who produced her forthcoming debut album), but has also been compared to artists such as Hiatus Kiayote and Ayla Nereo, the latter of whom she toured with in 2019. In this cross-genre limbo, Dewey has created her own style to describe herself with: UniverSOUL. Her self-titled, debut record will hit airwaves in August, and will serve as a true testament to how passionate MELD is toward her craft. Live For Live Music was able to talk with Melanie about influences and how the current state of live music is shaping the industry.

Chris Snyder: Times are strange right now. What are you doing to try to stay creative during this time?
MELD: I definitely agree. Times are strange. Like you and I were saying earlier. It’s a perfect time to be creative. If you have a creative personality you’re always looking for ways to be innovative. Now we have more time then we’ve had in years probably. I don’t know about you but before all of this, I was constantly running around from job to job. Doing a bunch of little things and my sanity was a little out of whack. I’m trying to look at this positively, that I am fortunate to have this time and space to create. It landed at the perfect timing for me because I have an album coming out at the end of August. I’ve been putting everything into that and I’ve been able to. That’s been nice!
Chris Snyder: So talking about the album. You worked with Anthony [Thogmartin] from Papadosio and EarthCry. What was the experience like?
MELD: Anthony mastered it, and is great at what he does. He has been mentoring me through this process on the low, not officially. We had a nice Zoom conference, where he helped me on the best ways to promote the album, with some Spotify tips, and we even talked about Tik Tok. It was pretty funny! He’s very knowledgeable and such a hard worker. He heard the music and just took it to the next level with mastering. Anthony works on all of Papadosio’s projects, with mixing and mastering. He kills it!
Chris Snyder: You mix genres from soul to jazz among others. Can you pinpoint your genre or can’t you really pinpoint it?
MELD: It’s hard to pinpoint so I came up with my own name. I call it “universoul.” It’s kind of a play on words. My last EP I worked on with Matt Harris (ZOOGMA). He helped me hone my sound back then. That was sort of like a “cinematic soul” and R&B. You could actually almost call it atmospheric soul and I feel like that carried over so I have lots of fusion elements and lots of jam influence. I’d also like to say it’s Tedeschi Trucks meets Papadosio meets Hiatus Kityote. Anything that evokes a unique emotion and makes people feel connected is what I’m drawn to. I want to make sure people know that we’re all connected on this planet and universe. Drawing from different experiences can help create that feeling within the musical realm.
Chris Snyder: Your first single coming out is “Freedom”, you really take the listener in just a few minutes on a heartfelt personal journey. Can you dive into how you recorded it and what inspiration it came from?
MELD: Absolutely. I’m really excited about “Freedom” because this is a song that I wrote three or four years ago. My drummer at the time was like “We have to turn this into something.” It came from a time when I was in a very shackling relationship. If you’re in a relationship like that in some ways it can be mind over matter, so it became a song about mental health too. Allowing to free yourself from your anxiety, and if you reach that breaking point you’re already there. At that point you’re just throwing your hands in the air saying “this is insane” or laughing at the insanity of your situation which I’m sure a lot of us are during coronavirus. You are free because there’s nowhere to go but up from there. I wanted to capture that musically. That’s why I had the horn section in there, because I feel horns are epic. From beginning to end I wanted a swell of emotion and at the end you really feel the freedom. Breaking free into that moment.
MELD — “Freedom”
[Video: MELD]
Chris Snyder: I was on a Zoom meeting with my family and we reminisced about past shows we’ve been to. It really hit me hard that there will be no live music this summer.
MELD: I had a similar experience. Relix put out a call to everyone to write one hundred fifty words on the power of live music. I sat down and was like “Yeah! I’ll do this” and by the end of it I was crying. The power of live music is everything. Soul reflection is good to an extent but togetherness, we go to shows to connect with people who normally don’t connect with on a real soul level and have more humility for everything. If we don’t have that it’s tough, especially in times like these.
Chris Snyder: During festival season I really enjoy musicians supporting each other, whether it be side stage or in the crowd. I love that the bands are putting out live streams but for me and hopefully the musicians feel the same way it’s not the same emotional level of connection.
MELD: It’s not. Say you’re listening to a live stream and you’re getting into it. You put your headphones on and turn off all your lights and you’re immersed in this live stream. Then maybe you could feel it a little more. I still think everyone is going to go that far with it you know. Not everyone is going to project it or put it on their big TV. A lot of people are going to watch it on their phones and it’s not the same experience but I’m still glad bands are doing it and innovating. I love the drive in-theatre that’s kind of circulating that Spafford just hopped on.
Chris Snyder: Bands like Phish that are bringing back shows every Tuesday for Dinner and a Movie. It’s a great music community to say the least. It’s still not that connection.
MELD: It’s very cool to see people being innovative and that’s what I’m loving. Papadosio, for example, just did a fan vote set. That’s the first time they’ve ever done that. Bands are engaging with their fans, and artists are more accessible than they have ever been forever. Which is so cool. There is just something about being surrounded by music in every sense of the word and enjoying it with so many people. It gives you hope for humanity. Going to a Phish show and there’s thousands of people and everyone is in it with you. Just everyone is enjoying themselves and that’s what the world (and life) should be like. It’s possible and it reminds me of that.
Chris Snyder: When it comes to the Earth, you’re a big proponent of protecting Mother Nature. Can you tell us about what you’ve done in the past, what you are doing now, and some future projects?”
MELD: I’m in Nashville, TN and in the past I did a four concert series called the Gaia Getdown. Gaia means Earth and we did a show for each element. We did one at Mercy Lounge, one at The High Watt and two at The Exit/In. It was a coming together of the local scene and we raised over $2,000 over the course of the whole event for various environmental charities such as OceanAid, Coalition For Clean Air, and these were all themed shows. We raised money for the wildfires when they were happening out in California. Urban Green Lab, which has a bus that drives around to schools and helps teach kids how to be more sustainable. I have been working with charities like that to raise awareness and also get them some funding because I think it’s very important. On tour, I designed a t-shirt that I call the “water t-shirt.” Every time someone bought it they got to donate 10-15% of the proceeds to the charity of their choice. I had buckets and little water droplets and I would say “Take a water droplet and put it in the bucket you want.” I’m trying to be inventive with this next record coming out, maybe tree planting.
Chris Snyder: Maybe you can get fans to sign up before the tour to plant a tree when you come to their city and you can meet up.
MELD: Yeah. Rising Appalachia everywhere they play they do a horticulture action day. Either in the morning of the show or the next day, they have a community garden, there’s music and planting. I’d like to incorporate more action like that when touring picks back up.”
Chris Snyder: It’s not only about the music but about the people and how we are going to survive for future generations.
MELD: I think this quarantine has been really good for that. Allowing people to reflect and connect with nature in a way we haven’t been doing for a long time. My hope is when everything comes back to normal we have a different headspace about it.
Chris Snyder: What advice can you give for up and budding musicians?
MELD: Networking is huge and has been drilled in me forever. Meet people, go out and support other bands. If you’re doing it for the love of the music, it’s going to work out for you. I, myself, have gotten caught up in the “Am I doing everything right?” just to meet a metric, or some level of success or standard. You see all your friends having certain success or numbers on Spotify. It’s genuine human connection that’s a big part of the live music experience. Wouldn’t you say?
Chris Snyder: I would agree with that a million percent.
MELD: “Why do you think people go see Phish over and over again? They have created an entire catalog of music that is very personable and interactive with the audience too. It’s all about the genuine human connection. Don’t get caught up in the industry. Don’t get caught up in the business of it. Yes, that’s important. That’s just part of it, that’s not the heart of it. Hey! That rhymed.

Look for MELD’s self-titled debut album this coming August. Stay tuned to her website for any announcements and new releases. - Live for Live Music

"Independent Musicians Are Reaping The Benefits Of Live-Streaming In Quarantine"

Independent country musician Emma White sits on her living-room couch. She plays a Gibson J-45 Sunburst, a classic instrument for country songwriters like her. She plays closing chords, and hugs it to her chest so she can look at her phone.
“Maybe reading your comments will be easier on my phone — oh, good! You guys can hear me!” She says. She says hello back to various viewers commenting on her post. “Stuart from Australia! My goodness. You want to busk, as well? Start with Facebook Live, you can reach people all across the world, apparently.”
When she tries to resume her set, it takes a moment — she’s dropped her pick somewhere in the couch cushions.
For all the opportunities for fault and fumble in live-streamed music performances, independent country artists have benefited from this medium’s rise in popularity. During lockdown, country music’s listener base widened on Spotify, despite an overall decrease in streams. In various ways, the increase in live-streamed performance opportunities — and necessary decrease in live performances, due to public health concerns — has leveled patches of the playing field between independent and big-label country musicians.
Live-streamed performances primarily expose a difference in access among musicians. Whether an artist is offered a live gig depends on a confluence of factors — the artist’s existing popularity, who represents the artist, whether the artist has connections with a given venue. Access to social media, in contrast, is not governed by connections. Any thirteen year-old with an iPhone can make a TikTok, and repost their gangly, dancing bodies onto an Instagram story. Public gathering restrictions, and the resulting cancellation of music gigs and festivals, have left musicians of all popularities with a similar set of tools: a camera and whatever instrument they happen to have on hand.
White — who established Whitehouse Records to invest in female artists after facing gender barriers in the industry — said that, before quarantine, she didn’t consider herself competitive enough to claim a spot on a tour. The cancellation of all tours for the foreseeable future forced her to refocus her energy on virtual performance venues that had been in front of her all along.
“It’s opened up this new world to me and this new way to reach people,” she said. “There may be a greater opportunity to find an audience now.”
She’s been primarily finding these audiences by partnering with radio stations across the country. On June 3, she streamed on Facebook Live with 102.4 The Coyote, a country radio station in Rochelle, Illinois, and received the most views she’s had to date: 12,000. Among independent country artists, platforms like Facebook and Instagram Live are most popular. They often partner with radio stations or brands to take advantage of established viewer bases.
Artists occasionally stream on their personal accounts, as well. Molly Lovette started a weekly Facebook Live show in which Lovette would perform any song her viewers requested — regardless of whether she knew it. She provided links to a virtual tip jar and merchandise sales in the captions, and viewers tipped every week. The reception to Lovette’s performances has given her hope during a financially tumultuous time — according to Lovette, her Spotify streams, Facebook shares and merch sales have all increased.
Initially, Tera Lynne Fister’s biggest fear was the loss of income from gig cancellations. “As you can imagine, being an independent artist in Nashville does not bid well on one’s checkbook,” she said, but live-streaming saved her financially and artistically. “I could see the colors in the flowers again. Not only was I beginning to have a small source of income, but I was promoting my music to a new audience. I can connect with artists and musicians, companies, industry folks I had never reached out to before.”
Allen Thompson, founding member of the Nashville live-streaming collective Virtual Festival, says streaming is becoming just as important as other sources of revenue for indie artists. Fans on the platform can donate to artists via PayPal and Venmo. “In my personal experience, I know I have reached a broader audience and generated far more revenue than I would have with my originally planned touring and performance schedule for this year,” he said.
But this grassroots approach, in which artists provide free entertainment and audiences tip as they wish, means that live-streaming revenue could never replace live-touring revenue, especially for big-label artists. Garth Brooks had the highest-grossing country music tour in 2019, netting $76.1 million for 13 shows. Florida Georgia Line’s 2019 tour netted $54.5 million for 50 shows, and Luke Bryan netted $37.2 million for 38 shows. This doesn’t mean big-label artists aren’t trying to effectively monetize this medium, though. Access to Josh Groban’s Jun. 27 livestream costs $20 — $55 with a merch bundle — and the pricier VIP tickets sold out during presale. Groban’s ability to monetize his concert is contingent upon his access to tech teams and personal streaming platforms outside social media, resources largely unavailable to independent musicians. This is why Thompson said that, although the playing field is leveling now, “history has taught us that it won’t be level for long” — independent artists can benefit from this moment, because they are still in the process of building their fanbases. Big-label artists don’t require an audience-building tool. They merely have to put up with financial pause until streaming is more broadly monetizable.
And, although social media streams increase access to audiences, and audiences have ample time for music exploration, Melanie Dewey of MELD said that the uptick in streams makes it easy to feel drowned out.
“Bottom line, it's all about being an artist that people relate to in these times,” Dewey said. "Fans are more accessible than ever on social media platforms, this is true. But millions more people would rather watch Justin Bieber answer questions on a live stream for five minutes than tune in to the most finely crafted live stream experience ever, by an artist with just 10 thousand followers on both platforms.”
According to Dewey, now is the time for independent artists to establish personas and build an audience, so they can benefit from live concert revenue in the future.
The pandemic did not fully level the playing field, but provided independent country artists with a unique opportunity: to take advantage of this pause, and prove to fans that they are normal people. When Emma White drops her guitar pick between cushions, she picks up a new fan or two. - FORBES

"Longtime Grateful Dead fan gets birthday wishes from band members before he dies"

A longtime Grateful Dead fan died in his native Syracuse, N.Y., on Saturday night but not before he heard from founding Dead member Bob Weir and Dead & Company's John Mayer.
Surrounded by family, Christopher Dewey, 50, died after battling cancer for more than a year and a half.
Ten days earlier, Weir tweeted 50th birthday greetings and well wishes to Dewey.
The same day, pop star John Mayer – who joined Weir and others five years ago to create the band Dead & Company – sent a video.
Dewey laughed and cried at the same time when he first saw Mayer's video, orchestrated by his daughter, Nashville singer/songwriter Melanie Dewey, known professionally as MELD.
That started months earlier when Melanie Dewey reached out to all of her Music Row contacts, her University of Miami music school friends and to every social media outlet she could think of.
The day before her dad's 50th, she asked thousands of friends and strangers on social media to reach out to members of the Grateful Dead and Dead & Company.
It worked.
"The next morning, I was on a walk with my brother and my phone started blowing up!" Melanie Dewey wrote in a statement. "Bobby (Weir) had tweeted happy birthday to my dad! My brother and I rushed home because we wanted to be the first to show him before anyone else texted him by accident and spoiled the surprise.
"His initial response was 'Get the frick out of here!'"
A friend of John Mayer sent Mayer's video greeting to Melanie Dewey later that day. That also was particularly meaningful to both Deweys because she hoped Mayer's hit "Daughters" would be the song she'd dance to with her dad at her wedding.
Melanie Dewey called her father's death "difficult" and "magical," adding she is thrilled her father got to hear from Weir and Mayer for his birthday before he died.
"More than anything, this experience reminded me that the entire Deadhead community is as strong as ever, and truly one of the best," she wrote, "full of some of the most genuine and kind people in the world." - The Tennessean

"John Mayer, Bob Weir Help Nashville Singer MELD Search For A Miracle On Her Ailing Father’s Birthday [Videos]"

Nashville singer-songwriter MELD took to the internet on Saturday in the hopes of procuring a “miracle” for her father’s 50th birthday. Her father, Christopher Dewey, is a lifelong Deadhead who is currently suffering battling stage four cancer, and since he can’t be on Shakedown Street waving his finger in the air, his daughter, born Melanie Dewey, went on social media in search of a miracle.
In a Facebook post, Dewey attached a video of her father, who instructed his daughter that if she wants a miracle, she needs to walk around, waving her finger all day. Melanie, in turn, posted the video with the following caption, asking for help connecting with Grateful Dead members:
Hey y’all MELD here- as you know from the last few posts, my dad is super sick with stage 4 cancer, and he’s a huge deadhead. I posted this video of him in lots of Grateful Dead/Phish/jam band groups (of him asking for his miracle Lol… only the headiest friends of mine will get it - Live for Live Music

"Soundcheck: The 35 Best Music Releases of the Week"

“MELD is fresh on the scene, but you best believe the waves she’s making are big. “Easy on the Game” is rich with soul. MELD’s sound is straight-up comforting, a thing we all need more of these days.” - Hayden Leland, Staff Writer, Nylon - Nylon Magazine

"Premiere: MELD – Leaving You Out (Felice Remix)"

MELD, a promising new indie/R&B artist out of Nashville, takes a big leap into the world of electronic music with the release of this energetic remix from Felice of her track “Leaving You Out.” The remix comes to us as the second single from MELD’s upcoming remix album, H.U.R.T. – The Remixes, set for release on April 20.

Felice’s energetic and musical idea for this remix blends well with MELD’s voice, which is already full of soul and emotion, and adds a whole new dimension to her work. As an exciting follow up to her 2017 debut, MELD explains the idea behind her diverse remix EP.

“I wanted the remix album to show a range of musical expressions,” she says. “I gave each remixer full artistic license over their remix, and essentially told them to create from their hearts. Starting with Felice’s DnB-inspired take on “Leaving You Out,” the album explores lots of genres including pop, hip-hop, ambient, and neo-soul (to name a few.) This project has shown me that there’s a really beautiful mutual inspiration that happens when you give somebody creative freedom over your work.”

Look for MELD out on tour in the southwestern United States later in spring, following the release of the album. - Dancing Astronaut

"Tune Up: MELD"

Nashville songwriter Melanie Dewey’s recent transformation to the musical alias MELD marks an evolution in identity that couldn’t be more aptly titled. By all accounts, here is an artist that isn’t afraid to break down the boundaries that too often limit and confine. The result is a soulful alchemy, a synthesis between electronic and traditional elements that blur the lines between past and present, balancing atmosphere with grounded force. More than anything, her voice trail-blazes through the layers, a velvet beacon that can swell from a lull to crescendos of power in a matter of seconds.

The songwriter has played in a variety of musical outfits over the years, and the culmination of MELD emboldens one of her strongest constants throughout: art for the sake of love. There is an undeniable honesty palpable in each breath, words that tumble from a wishing well of love that will never go dry.

BTRtoday sat down to talk about MELD’s upcoming single, “Easy on the Game,” which will be out on Spotify, Soundcloud, and iTunes on Nov 11th, and what this new musical chapter might reveal in the days ahead.

BTRtoday: For a long time you’ve created music under your name, Melanie Dewey, but a few days ago you announced a new step in your musical evolution. What is MELD, and what does this rebirth signify for you?

Melanie Dewey (MD): The evolution is about a lot of things. Firstly, it’s about my desire to fearlessly take on new and challenging personal roles within the scope of my music. As much as I will always love my birth name and appreciate the musical spaces it guided me through, it always felt more like a songwriter’s name than the name of a band or a collective project. I am a songwriter of course–but I know there’s so much more to be explored within the realms of art and sound. I want to be at the frontline, diving into the messy and vibrant creation of it all.


MD: I chose MELD as the artist name to lead the charge because the literal meaning of the word resonates deeply with me and what I’ve been learning in the past few years of my life. It was my way of carrying nature’s concepts of oneness, unity, collaboration and fusion with me, to serve as a reminder whenever I am creating. With MELD, the goal is to create a fully-immersive and emotional experience for everyone involved.

“If my sound could be described in colors, it would be maroon, deep purple, and teal–melting into earthy greens, blues and browns. If it could be described in feelings, it would be naked honesty met with acceptance. It’s animal and primal, but in a gentle and curious way.”
I believe everyone is truly eclectic and complex by nature; I wanted to find a way to celebrate that instead of trying to place myself in a mold. Ultimately with this name, MELD, I feel like I don’t have to apologize for being eclectic. I can be everything I want to be, that I am meant to be, and that I was. I can just BE.

BTR: Genres aside, how would you describe this new sound?

MD: I think my songs capture the feeling of walking the line between nature and nurture. As we explore nature, it envelopes us and fills us with questions of existence. Like the very cells we came from, we are rapidly expanding and awakening. Yet nature also gave us nurture to slow us down and relax us. With our bodies we’re able to love and create warmth. We can heal ourselves, and meditate and sing through the confusion.

When I write my songs, I always begin with a question. And then, as the song transforms, I imagine that I am taming the question, and pushing past that point into the refreshment and comfort of nurture. That is how I want my songs to feel to the listener as well.

If my sound could be described in colors, it would be maroon, deep purple, and teal–melting into earthy greens, blues and browns. If it could be described in feelings, it would be naked honesty met with acceptance. It’s animal and primal, but in a gentle and curious way.

BTR: After playing in New York for years you made the move to Nashville. What was that transition like for your songwriting? Has the musical heritage of the city steeped into your songs?

MD: Ironically, when I wasn’t in Nashville I was writing country/folk inspired music. Then, once I moved to Nashville and saw how saturated it was with people aspiring to write top 40 songs, I realized that as much as I respect the craft, it’s not me. The coolest part about Nashville, is all the hidden pockets that it holds… and that’s what I wanted to explore. Maybe it’s the jam band kid in me, but the city of Nashville itself feels like one big improvisational song constantly building on itself. There are so many incredible small musical scenes to find if you look hard enough. After two years of immersing myself and following the beat of the collective drum, I have just finally started to find those pockets that feel like home.

I’m so grateful there is a thriving jam band and soul scene here, and it’s beautiful how they overlap. That alone has helped to shape my sound in ways I probably haven’t even fully realized yet.

In regards to the roots of Nashville, what has steeped into my music is the musical honesty and integrity from artists like Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, and Kris Kristofferson. I will always love an honest, stripped down lyric, and that is what built this city. It’s amazing to realize the history I’m lucky enough to be a part of.

BTR: Tell me a little bit about your newest single, “Easy on the Game.” How did it come together?

MD: The song itself came to fruition when I was playing with my loop pedal about a year ago. In fact, it’s actually the first song I wrote on my looping station. I turned on my Yamaha M06, found a vintage Rhodes sound, three chords that felt good (which I later found out are the same chords in “Althea” by The Grateful Dead), a simple R&B beat that I liked, and then I started singing over it. The melodies, harmonies and lyrics all stacked pretty seamlessly, and then after jamming for a long time over the chords for the bridge I settled into the idea of a musical interlude/bridge, which you’ll hear on the final recording as well.

“Even if the song has a sad or lonely tinge to it, suddenly knowing that someone else has walked through the same darkness you have makes it seem a little less dim.”
Since it’s birth, the song has truly felt like a continuously spinning wheel of musical ideas. It was also the very first song my producer Matt and I touched upon in the studio together, and now it’s going to be my first single. Hopefully it continues to loop into the world and touch even more spaces when it’s released this November.

BTR: The words seem personal, but also speak to a longing much larger. What kind of headspace were you in while writing the lyrics?

MD: I wrote the song about some feelings of frustration and sadness I was experiencing towards a lover at the time, but it’s truly blossomed into being a lot more about humanity, and brotherhood in general. There are simply some bonds we make in life that are sacred from the moment they’re made.
Learning how to honor those bonds though, especially on this earth, is a whole new challenge.

When we’re handed something so deeply honest and rare, I think fear can start to take over. Much like a mother to her child, or a twin to its flame… we are suddenly a vital part of the most beautiful thing we’ve ever seen and we don’t want to mess it up, or muddy it for the honest thing it is. It’s all so pure and free in the beginning, and then we have to learn human acceptance and coexistence and understanding. We have to learn how to be unconditionally loving, but also stand up for ourselves.

But there is a balance, and there is a way to do that. It just takes two. That’s what this song is about. It’s about the battle between one person who is willing to accept the dark sides of someone they love unconditionally, and how they seem to only meet resistance, lack of communication, or dishonesty from the other side. It’s my song about standing up to your fears in love, and being a warrior for acceptance.

BTR: What does storytelling mean to you as a songwriter?

MD: To me, storytelling within music has this ability unlike almost anything else–to transport anyone from a negative space into a positive and optimistic space. Even if the song has a sad or lonely tinge to it, suddenly knowing that someone else has walked through the same darkness you have makes it seem a little less dim.

I believe it’s those small moments of art revival, that give us boosts of hope to keep moving forward.

BTR: When can listeners expect to hear a full length release from MELD, and what’s in store for the rest of the year?

MD: Well, there will definitely be a full EP released very early 2017 (probably somewhere near my birthday so it can be released during Aquarius season). And I’m also currently in the concept stage of working on filming a music video for “Easy On The Game.” We’re aiming for a mid- December release of the video.

As for live performances, I’ll be having my single and EP release parties down here in Nashville, but I am making plans to do holiday shows at home in Syracuse, NY, and to do a full east coast tour (and hopefully a small west coast tour as well) this March and April in support of the EP.

The thing I might be most excited about though, are the visual artists I am planning on teaming up with for this juncture. I’ll be working closely with some incredible visual artists from all over the states (NY, PA, WA, TN, NC, AZ, etc.) to create a fully immersive art experience. The goal is to have one artist illustration per song on my EP. I will then take the designs on the road with me and sell them for commission, and also possibly feature them in my album art. Ultimately, I hope to have live painters and performance artists at some of my shows… but that’s something to look forward to a bit further down the road.

Either way, whatever the future melds into, I’ll find a way to make art out of it. - BTRToday

"Syracuse Native Melanie Dewey Issues Pop Soul EP"

Syracuse-born singer-songwriter Melanie Dewey, known as MELD these days, made the jump to Nashville in 2014 and hasn’t looked back. The Jan. 27 release of her EP H.U.R.T. marked Dewey’s next career step; it’s an album she calls “cinematic R&B” regarding its unusual mix of soul and electronica.

“The overarching theme is healing,” she says about her album’s message. “H.U.R.T. stands for ‘healing under rising truth.’ On the cover I have a flower over my one eye and the other eye is crying. The makeup artist did tears around my neck and back up to the flower, so I’m watering myself. The theme is that from pain can arise great beauty and growth. We might not know it at the time, but healing ourselves through that moment, it happens. I think the songs speak to that truth as well.”

Dewey’s songs propose an interesting juxtaposition. They’re undeniably pop with heavy synths, modern effects and expert production. But the subject matter isn’t just bubble gum. It’s actually condemning fluff, to ripping the soul from the art or disregarding the poet in the corner. Here’s a sample:

“’Cause what happened to lyrics/ that taught us that love wasn’t solely possessive?/ What happened to being progressive/ writing out truth for the human collective?/ Since when is it about what we collected/ quarter to quarter what we writes an investment/ But art lives and breathes through expression/ maybe that’s why the radio’s dying/ ’Cause if you put a science behind it/ All that you’re left with is cold calculation/ Lines that are stolen/ Cliches about minds that are scattered/ And hearts that are broken/ Where is the poet?/ He’s playing for free/ at the cafe but would you even go in?/ Are you scared of his thoughts?/ Scared to be taught something more than you already know?”

Dewey started on piano as a child, studied opera and was even offered a full ride to college. But instead of riding the opera wave, she chose to attend University of Miami, where she studied songwriting and music industry.

“Miami had jazz and other contemporary programs,” she says. “Something in my gut told me to go there. I wouldn’t be the songwriter I am today having not gone there. I’m very grateful.”

Dewey worked with Rey Sanchez, director of the Bruce Hornsby Creative American Music Program, as well as a professional guitarist and musical director for Latin superstar Chayanne. “He heard me do a few songs when I auditioned and told me to go back and keep writing,” she says. “He let me in when my writing improved. I had to show my chops.”

The program had students experiment with writing musical styles through the decades, trying out each in order to help students find their own voice. “Any week I would write a song in the style of Etta James or Joni Mitchell or the Grateful Dead or Guns N’ Roses. You got to experiment with all the different forms. It might seem confusing, but it just helped you find your sound.”

Dewey graduated in 2014 and moved back to Syracuse to recharge. The adjustment from college to the real world was difficult, however.
“I have anxiety, but it was pretty bad after I graduated,” she says. “All of a sudden, I had to make music my career. It wasn’t just for fun or assignments anymore. It was something they didn’t, or couldn’t, really prepare us for.”

But Dewey took the time in Syracuse to focus on writing and finding her sound. Although she had done country music in the past, she didn’t like the way the industry was going commercially. So she relocated to Nashville in September 2014, a move she doesn’t regret for an instant.
“Moving was really empowering,” she says. “I faced a lot of my fears. I got up and did it. Staying in Syracuse was staying in a comfort zone. I had this moment, sitting in my new room, where I was feeling super Zen and just thinking, ‘I’m a bad ass. I did this.’ I beat anxiety without any medication. The only way to get past our fears is to just face them. It’s been unfolding since then.”

Dewey gravitated toward a more soulful rhythm’n’blues sound that is fully explored on H.U.R.T. Although mostly headed by Dewey on songwriting, keys and vocals and her producer Matt Harris, who also played drums, the EP features nine other players that bring all kinds of sounds to the table. The arrangements highlight everyone, especially sax from Paul Violante and the horn section on “Leaving You Out” (Josh Blaylock, Jovan Quallo and Kevin Griffin). The songs walk a fine line between comfortingly familiar and completely new and different, a true challenge for a songwriter to accomplish.

Dewey has toured to promote her disc and plans to take it to the Salt City in late spring or early summer. “I love being home and playing in Syracuse,” she says. “There’s nothing like playing for people who love you unconditionally.”

H.U.R.T. is available on Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play, Soundcloud and YouTube. - Syracuse New Times

"MELD Debuts New Single “Easy On The Game”"

We at No Country love alerting you to new artists on the rise, and today we’d like to introduce you to MELD, the new moniker of singer-songwriter Melanie Dewey. Melanie creates songs that encompass a wide range of genres from soul to americana, and her vivacious and loving spirit is found all throughout her music and the artistic goals she has set out to accomplish in Music City. Since moving to Nashville two years ago from Upstate New York, she has played venues all over town, and recently turned heads in Music City Big Break Competition that was held at Mercy Lounge.

Today, MELD is celebrating the release of her debut single under the new moniker, “Easy On The Game,” which uses three strong and prominent chords, played with a vintage Rhodes sound on her Yamaha, to carry the tune from start to finish. What began as a song about an ex-boyfriend has flourished and blossomed into a funky and melodic rally call for humanity to come together, a sentiment that rings all too true this week as we recover from an intense election night. MELD is set to celebrate the single release with a show at Tennessee Brew Works on Saturday Nov. 12 starting at 4pm. - No Country For New Nashville

"MELD Drops Debut EP ‘H.U.R.T.’ | Catch Her Release Party TONIGHT @ The Basement"

A few months ago, we introduced you to new local singer MELD, and her infectious single “Easy on the Game.” Spearheaded by local songwriter Melanie Dewey, who teamed up with Matt Harris of Nashville livetronica band Zoogma to bring her debut EP H.U.R.T. to life, the album dabbles in pop, R&B, and alt-soul in a way that combines the rising neo-soul and alt pop of today’s music with the timeless sensibilities of the great musicians of the past. The album’s title, which is an acronym for “Healing Under Rising Truth” is also relevant in today’s political climate, and sees the young songwriter exploring her feelings of love for all, including self love.

Click below to stream the EP for yourself, and head out to The Basement tonight, Jan. 30 for her official release party with Whoa Dakota, Katie Pruitt, and Vinyl Sunday. - No Country For New Nashville

"7 Soulful Singles"

MELD is the moniker of Nashville songwriter Melanie Dewey. She dropped her EP, H.U.R.T, a little over a month ago and this single comes to us from that release. “Easy on the Game” sets Dewey’s caramelly vocals against an R&B backdrop, heavy on the B. I can easily imagine this single wafting atop the smoke in some nightclub, but MELD has a contemporary take that will suit both modern listeners and old school soul fans alike. Give “Easy on the Game” by MELD a listen below and, if you dig what you’re hearing, venture into the full EP (available here). - YabYum West


H.U.R.T. - EP - 2017  
Produced by: Matt Harris and Melanie Dewey
Mixed and Engineered by: Matt Harris, Nashville, TN
Mastered by: Matt Harris, Nashville, TN

H.U.R.T. (The Remixes) - EP - 2018
Produced by: Matt Harris and Melanie Dewey
Remixes mixed and mastered by: Felice, Smurphio of Afrobeta, YDIZ, Daniel Simmons, SAER, Batavia, Spaceship Earth, and Waterchild

MELD - LP - 2020
Produced by: Josh Nelson and Melanie Dewey
Mixed by: Paul "Paco: Cossette; Engineered by: Conor McCarthy of Electric Church Records, Josh Nelson, and Michael Esser of Sundog Records



MELD's music is an eclectic soulful journey. Drawing inspiration from several genres, Progressive Soul/Jazz, Jam band music, with a tinge of theatricality, she has created a unique fusion of musical elements often referred to as "UniverSOUL." People have likened her performance to that of a "modern day" Janis Joplin meets Hiatus Kaiyote. 

In January of 2017, Nashville-based artist MELD released her debut EP "H.U.R.T." (Healing Under Rising Truth.) The 5-song work was produced by Matt Harris of Livetronica band, Zoogma, and can be found on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, Tidal, YouTube and more. Her single "Easy On The Game" received nods from Nylon Magazine, BTRToday, No Country for New Nashville, YabYum Arts, Syracuse New Times, and several other publications- ultimately landing the single on Hype Machine. The "H.U.R.T." remix album was released on April 20th, 2018, with collaborations and remixes by FeliceSAER, ARTIST X, Spaceship EarthWaterchild, and Batavia. The albums first single “Leaving You Out (Felice Remix)” was premiered on renowned EDM blog, Dancing Astronaut, and the full album was featured on We Rave You on release day. As of August 2018, the single has reached over 170K listens on Spotify.

The release of the remix album kicked off the first half of MELD's 2018 full-band summer tour, starting at Music On The Mothership Music Festival in Taos, NM. From there, the group traveled to Arizona, Utah, and Colorado, where they ended the first half of the tour at Sonic Bloom Music Festival. Additionally, MELD has played festivals and shows in Tennesseee, New York, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Texas, Arkansas, California, Maine, Georgia, DC, and Florida (where she graduated with honors from the Bruce Hornsby Program at the University of Miami's Frost School of Music.) Most recently, MELD opened for Funk/Jam band The Main Squeeze in her hometown Nashville, TN at Exit/In. In previous solo projects, MELD (aka Melanie Dewey,) has had the opportunity to share the stage with Maggie Rose, Teddy Geiger, and jam bands Brothers Past, and Zoogma, briefly touring with the latter in February of 2016 for their "New Era" tour.

With a fierce passion for the wellness of Mother Earth, and protecting the environment, MELD works hard to use her music as a platform to support environmentally friendly inititatives whenever she can. In 2018 alone, MELD's "Gaia Getdown" series in Nashville raised $1500+ for charities such as The Sierra Club, Coalition for Clean Air, Red Cross (benefitting wildfire victims,) Urban Green Lab, and OceanAid. MELD aims to continue these initiatives with the launch of her upcoming debut full length album, due out in Spring of 2019. 

Overall, MELD aims to promote vulnerability, and open hearts with her eclectic approach. She takes inspiration from the colorful era of the 60's, and progressive, boundary-breaking artists such as The Grateful Dead, Phish, Papadosio, Snarky Puppy, Laura Mvula, Hiatus Kaiyote, Janis Joplin, Rubblebucket, Becca Stevens, Tedeschi-Trucks, and more. Her mission as an artist, is to honor and acknowledge the validity of all musical processes, players, genres, and storytelling methods - while fearlessly 'melding' them together. In promoting the oneness of all things, MELD stands for fusion, acceptance, collaboration, diversity, and above all, fearless love of self, and others. 

Following a fruitful year in 2019 as she toured with Ayla Nereo, and worked on Ayla's management team, MELD's debut full length album is set to be released in July of 2020. 

Band Members