Roots country singer/songwriter Rod Melancon was born August 16, 1988 in South Louisiana. At the age of 18 he packed and headed out west to California. In December 2007, he received his first guitar as a Christmas Present. That same year he bought his grandfather a cd with a collection of Hank Williams Sr. songs. His grandfather went into a corner of the house, put on the album, and listened for what seemed to be hours. Amazed at the impact the collection of songs had on his grandfather, Rod soon started teaching himself to play by listening to that same collection of songs.
Before too long, he started writing his own songs. His first song, “My Brother” which he wrote in late 2008 received great feedback and motivated him to put more effort into it. Around the same time he met Brad Nickel, a fellow musician and kindred spirit from New York who supported and encouraged Rod’s musical explorations. After a series of late night jam sessions, Brad offered to produce Rod’s first album gratis.
In early, 2009 over two whirlwind weeks, Rod recorded what would become his self titled debut album of 11 songs at Brad’s parents home in Idaho. Nine of the songs were written by Rod, while “On The Road” and “Sweet Simplicity” were written in collaboration with Brad.
Rod’s debut album was released on CD Baby, www.cdbaby.com, in July 2009 and soon after was picked up by iTunes, Rhapsody, and Amazon. He charted almost immediately on the alternative country charts and has been reviewed positively in a number of international markets, Belgium, UK, and the Netherlands just to name few. He’s been likened to a young Johnny Cash and Steve Earle.
Rod has also developed quite a following in his hometown in Louisiana where his debut single, “On the Road” is in frequent rotation on the Radio.
Rod Melancon - Acoustic Guitar
John Cornelius - Lead Guitar (Electric)
Rod Melancon - Debut Album - July 2009
On The Road - Single - Station Adds December 1, 2009
Melancon's debut album earning rave reviews
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Rod Melancon moved to Los Angeles to attend the New York Film Academy and pursue his dream of becomi...Rod Melancon moved to Los Angeles to attend the New York Film Academy and pursue his dream of becoming an actor.
Although successful in landing several parts in the film industry and becoming a member of the Screen Actor’s Guild, it’s his singing that is currently drawing high praises.
“Because my music is getting international attention,” said the singer, “I am primarily focusing on that right now.”
After his album was released on the web site CDbaby, he received international attention.
A Norwegian internet forum called altcountry, reviewed his CD calling him a young Bob Dylan, and comparing his music to such great artists as Kris Kristofferson and James Taylor.
In the upcoming September issue of Maverick Magazine, Melancon’s review is quite impressive.
It reads as follows:
“Rod Melancon’s debut self-titled album is packed full of songs inspired by family, friends and life experiences.
“With influences including Johnny Cash, Hank Williams, Ryan Adams, The Eagles and Bruce Springsteen, it is easy to see where Rod gets his musical style from.
“There are hints of all of these artists and more in this fine collection of songs.
“The album starts off with a gravely voiced Rod singing On The Road. This is a highly polished opening song.
“Rod has the voice of someone a lot older and wiser than his years. Listening to this opening song you know you are in for a real musical treat. Sweet Mary Ann is a folk/country song that reminds me of Tom Russell’s musical story telling, but with a much softer edge. A delightful song that again highlights Rod’s enormous singing talents.
“The Great Escape has a touch of Brad Paisley about it. This is an enjoyable song with plenty of feeling.
“Sweet Simplicity is a gentle song with a slight pop feel. Here Rod’s love of The Eagles appears to come into play.
“Home is a lovely ballad with heartfelt, emotional lyrics. This is a real gem.
“Find Myself Again is a faster song with a rocky edge. There are hints of Bruce Springsteen here.
“Someday sees a complete change in style. This song has more of an experimental feel. It is not quite a country song and not quite a pop song either.
“Louisiana Night sees a quick return to form. Rod’s deeper vocals remind me of Josh Turner. This is a stunning country song. Motel Room is one of those songs that makes you sit up and take notice. An excellent song, it has smash hit written all over it.
“Highway Girl is a gentle folk infused song, pleasant on the ear.
“The final song on the album is called Faith. It feels like the album has gone full circle as Rod’s vocals once again have a gravely edge.
“There is little backing on this song allowing Rod’s vocals to take center stage. A lovely song to end the album on.
“This is an album packed full of potential. Rod Melancon is a name for the future there is no doubt about that.”
Melancon, 21, grew up outside of Gueydan and graduated from Kaplan High School in 2006.
While at KHS, he was a member of the Vermilion Players, starring in “Lil Abner” and “Grease.”
At the age of 18, he headed out to Los Angeles.
Less than two years ago, Melancon received his first guitar as a Christmas present.
That same Christmas, Rod purchased a Hank Williams Sr. CD for his grandfather and saw how these songs had such an impact
After returning to LA, he began teaching himself to play his new gift.
“Acting leaves a lot of free time on your hands,” said Melancon, “I had the time to learn how to play guitar. “
He began teaching himself the Hank Williams songs that meant so much to his grandfather.
After receiving positive feedback on his musical abilities, he began to write his own songs and concentrate on his music..
“Because of my love of film and stories,” he said, “ideas would pop in my head. I would then turn the idea into songs.”
One of his biggest fans and supporter was his friend C.J. Thomison, who was the lead actor in the TV show, “Harper’s Island”.
“He is the reason I kept on writing my own songs.”
Not too long after, he met Brad Nickel, a musician from New York who continued to encourage and support Rod in his musical explorations while in Los Angeles.
In early 2009, it was decided that Brad would produce what would become Rod’s debut album during a whirlwind two week recording session at Brad’s home recording studio in Idaho.
He has currently written 23 songs and has no plans to sell his songs to other artists.
“The songs I write are like my children,” laughs Rod. “I am very protective of them. I won’t say I will never consider another artist singing my songs, but right now I don’t think it will happen.”
Rod is influenced by tons of singer/songwriter artists who put their heart and soul for the sake of a song.
Some of his influences are Johnny Cash, Ryan Adams, Kris Kristofferson, Townes Van Zandt, Steve Earle, Bruce Springsteen, James Taylor, Hank Williams Sr., Bob Dylan among many others.
Melancon said living in Los Angeles has been a rewarding experience.
“The people living in the city are so free spirited. You are who you are and no one judges you for being different.”
On pronouncing his last name in California, he said no one gets it right.
“I just correct them because my name is very important to me. I am very proud of my Cajun heritage. Changing your name is common here, but I have absolutely no plans to do so.”
Melancon said his next step is getting his band together to go on tour.
His CD can be purchased at Patti’s Book Nook in Gueydan, or can be downloaded on CDbaby, amazon.com, iTunes and Rhapsody.
30 - 45 Minute Set
1. Back Down To You
2. Sweet Mary Ann
5. Praying for the Light
6. Motel Room
7. Louisiana Night
8. My Hometown
9. On The Road
10. Find Myself Again
12. The Great Escape
There are no upcoming dates at this time.