Melody Gardot
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Melody Gardot


Band Jazz Singer/Songwriter


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""Worrisome Heart" Review"


"Album Review on"

" owe it to your ears to discover this gem for yourself." - Sophie Bruce - BBC Music

"Melody Gardot in Businessweek Magazine"

"Falling somewhere between jazz and blues in a place where Billie Holiday meets Tom Waits, she also has moments that recall pieces of Nina Simone, early Rickie Lee Jones and even the sophistication of Cole Porter." - Mike Marrone (XM Contributor)

"Superb Debut from Philly Songstress"

"Far beyond the ordinary. She's a luminous singer...." - Andy Whitman, Senior Contributing Editor, PASTE MAGAZINE. Album,
'Worrisome Heart' received 4 stars. - PASTE MAGAZINE

"City Paper Philadelphia-"

Singer-songwriter Melody Gardot plays through the pain. Her voice is warm and weighty, hinting at a maturity born not of mileage but of burden and experience.

- Patrick Rapa



Philadelphia PA, JUNE 3, 2005- Melody Gardot has been making waves with her most recent debut release of an independently produced/manufactured 6 song EP titled “Some Lessons the Bedroom Sessions”. The EP was officially released in late April 2005 and made its debut to CDBABY, the top independent online distribution company, in the beginning of May. The editors of CDBABY loved it so much they decided to feature it as an editor’s pick and highly recommended it to all their customers. They said,

“Sleepy, sultry, smoky acoustic-born female jazzy pop that brings to mind the jazz/pop hybrid of Norah Jones. With the accessibility- harmonically, melodically and vocally- of sweet, mellow female folk pop, enriched with sophisticated jazz harmonies and a whispery overtone that puts a hush over her audience, Melody Gardot delivers some beautifully smoky songs that, like red hot embers, have an intense, long-lasting slow burn. One very nice album here.—Tamara Tuner, CD BABY”

Young Gardot is not your typical singer/songwriter. Aside from a stand alone voice, and impressive knack for mature songwriting, she was recently disabled following a motor vehicle accident in Nov. 2003; she was struck by a Jeep Grande Cherokee while riding her bicycle home in Philadelphia PA. The accident rendered her immobile with several pelvis fractures, spinal damage, and numerous other injuries which have left her in recovery since. Largely playing a factor in her difficulty is an autonomic nervous system dysfunction which makes her photosensitive (cannot tolerate light) and have extreme Hyperacusis/Tinnitus. The condition forces her to wear darkly tinted sunglasses and earplugs on a daily basis, and especially when performing. The absence of such will trigger a “system overload” where this strong young female will collapse to the ground and blackout without warning.

“It makes being a musician nearly impossible, as there are times when I cannot walk into the venue due to too much noise. I have spent several shows outside of the venue until right before the performance time due to this intolerance,” says young Gardot, “It makes the typical socializing and networking of the green room impossible for me, but people have been very understanding and kind.”

Having only played a few shows beginning in February this year, she has already played some of Philadelphia’s top venues such as The World Café Live and The Tin Angel, sharing the stage with such local greats as Four Way Street. Though her health has made it necessary for her to stick to primarily opening gigs, or shorter sets, this young chanteuse still persistently charges after an opportunity to be heard. She’s shared the stage with Philly locals Josh Komorowski (Love Syndicate) and Seth Kallen at the Tin Angel and packed the house. And on May 20th and 21st she opened for Jeffrey Gaines followed by David Poe at Steel City Coffeehouse in Phoenixville, PA. Philly’s most well-known singer/songwriter radio station WXPN 88.5 has also been supporting her album with regular airplay and an in-studio performance set to air in the upcoming weeks. SATURDAY, JULY 2nd she will be performing at the TIN ANGEL as well as at WXPN ALL ABOUT THE MUSIC FESTIVAL in CAMDEN NJ on JULY 24th.

About Melody Gardot:

What is most amazing about Melody Gardot is her ability to see the struggle in her life as a positive and push beyond the daily pain and doctor’s visits that keep her tied up 5 days a week. A typical day leaves her out of the house from 9-6, for the time that most people spend working. She sees doctors on a daily basis for the continuing problems that are a result of the automobile accident, yet somehow she still finds it in her to keep a stiff upper lip, draw on the positive, and make beautiful music. Truly an inspiration to us all.


" honors Melody Gardot"

As a former bass player and singer who has suffered hearing damage and tinnitus I appreciate Melody's courage and talents in the face of her affliction. - Kathy Peck



SOUTHAMPTON - Melody Gardot was living life to the hilt.

Just 19 years old, [melody] would rise early at her Philadelphia apartment, hit the gym, go to her college classes, stay up late, cram, eat and have fun.

Then one night in November 2003, everything changed. During a bike trip to the bank, Gardot was hit by a sport utility vehicle. She was thrown from her bike, and she suffered head and pel-vic injuries.

"It was comic-book like," she said. "I tried to move, but my legs wouldn't listen."

Today, Melody Gardot jokes that she lives at the speed of a grandmother.

She slowly makes her way around her family's Southampton home. A cane takes pressure off her recovering bones. She sits away from the light, sunglasses protecting her eyes, which are "flooded," or overstimulated, sensitive to any light because of nerve damage.

Her recovery has been long, difficult and frustrating. Six days of doctor's appointments every week. Steroid injections. A 32-day stay at MossRehab in Philadelphia. At one point, a dozen prescriptions to kill the pain.

And her memory. Gardot would eat six apples in an afternoon and wonder why her stomach ached. She could no longer multitask. Showers became 90-minute, "Where did I put the shampoo?" events.

Then she told a doctor about music. Gardot had played piano while growing up and even took requests at piano bars in the city. More recently, she had learned to play guitar, and she was good. Security guards at her school who heard her play told her she "had soul."

The doctor told her to get back into music. It will stimulate your memory, he told her.

Gardot took her guitar to her bedroom and started playing. It was funny, what thoughts came out as she wrote her songs. She was 20, but her life was so inconsistent, so unpredictable that she'd found new ways to cope, found new people in the world and found that getting through the day was enough.

"Some Lessons, The Bedroom Sessions" were born.

The six-song CD, in so many notes, is a nod to Gardot's new world. It's a world that's slower, tedious and trying, but those things aren't all bad. When her life flipped itself over, she said, slow became a chance to be introspective. Free time became time to think. Suffering became a chance to challenge herself.

"I don't have to react quickly to things, and there's no pressure to expect to get things done," she said. "It's something I never had to think about before. The consistency in my life, I guess, was the inconsistency."

Gardot is learning that those lessons, when communicated through song, are of value to the public, too. She plays to audiences in Philadelphia, and the reaction has been positive.

"People tell me it feels different, that there's an honesty in what I'm saying," she said. "I try to relate on raw emotion, and bypass that marketing ... junk."

Gardot will take her songs - and lessons - to an even bigger stage July 24 when she performs on WXPN-FM's "All About the Music Festival" in Camden. It's the kind of show, she hopes, that gets her through to the next day.

"The insight from all this, it's a gift," she said. "I never expected it, but the weights, they tipped in my favor."

BURLINGTON COUNTY TIMES, NJ - Burlington County Times, NJ

"Editor's Pick at"


One very nice album here! Sleepy, sultry, smoky acoustic-born female jazzy pop that brings to mind the jazz/pop hybrid of Norah Jones......Melody Gardot delivers some beautifully smoky songs that, like red hot embers, have an intense, long-lasting slow burn. - CDBABY.COM

"City Paper 2005 Awards"

To our eyes, nobodys a more inspiring, more talented fighter than young singing-songwriter phenom Melody Gardot. She turned the pain of a life-changing car accident into suprisingly mature and utterly enthralling music. - City Paper Philadelphia


Worrisome Heart (UCJ/Verve) - Feb 2008 - CD
Worrisome Heart (independent release)- Nov 2006 - CD
Some Lessons EP (independent release) - April 2005 - CD

CdBaby - "Some Lessons" (2005)
iTunes/Amazon - "Worrisome Heart" (2008)



"4 Stars" .....MOJO

The finest musicians don’t always make the most noise. At 23, singer-songwriter Melody Gardot understands the value of subtlety and understatement. It’s what helps to make her debut album, ‘Worrisome Heart’, sound simultaneously familiar, yet utterly surprising.

Gardot’s presence both lyrically and musically lend themselves to someone far beyond her years, yet she had her first introduction to the world of music only a short while ago when she earned some spare cash by playing in piano bars. She was just 16.

“Music wasn’t something I thought I’d wind up doing,” she admits. “I played on Fridays and Saturdays, for four hours a night. I wasn’t your typical player though because I only played music that I liked. A mix of things old and new, I played everything from the Mamas & The Papas to Duke Ellington to Radiohead.”

It was only after an automobile accident while riding her bicycle home that the path Gardot has set out on began to change. Struck suddenly by a vehicle, she suffered multiple pelvic fractures, spinal, nerve and head injuries. Several of the effects have left their marks in various ways such as requiring Gardot to carry a cane and sport shaded glasses to combat residual photosensitivity.

Since Gardot had dabbled in music the past, during a follow up visit one day, her doctor suggested she try music therapy as a means for recovery. Specifically, he believed it would help her with her cognitive problems as music has been known to help repair neuropathways in the brain after severe trauma. However, her doctor can’t have imagined the far-reaching consequences. While still unable to walk, Melody began writing and recording songs on a portable multitrack recorder at her bedside.

“I started recording the songs as a way to remember what I’d done; I had really bad short-term memory problems,” she explains. “At the end of the day I couldn’t remember the beginning”.

Although Melody claims she was never a fanatical music buff with a vast and esoteric record collection, she knows how to get the results she wants with her own songs.

“I had ideas about how I wanted things to go. In the studio cutting ‘Worrisome Heart’, I remember standing in the recording booth and saying to the horn guys ‘can you make it sleazier?’ They said ‘yeah! Sleazy man, that’s cool!’ It may not have been the most musical way to put it but they knew exactly what I meant!” she laughs.

You can tell she’s doing something right, because nobody is quite sure how to define her music. There have been comparisons with Norah Jones or Diana Krall, and she was recently invited by Herbie Hancock to sing Joni Mitchell’s song Edith And The Kingpin for the Live From Abbey Road TV series. But equally her performances might evoke echoes of Peggy Lee or even Tom Waits.

So is her music jazz? Is it blues?

“I can understand why people hear the blues in the songs,” she reflects. “Even the chord structures are simple in nature and pure in their darkest places. People talk about jazz, but if you strip it all down it just comes down to one thing: its all about the songs and the place where they originate. I’ve had a lot of heartbreak (hence the Worrisome Heart) and when you feel that so intensely you cant help but go there when the music calls for it. When people talk about singing the blues this is what they mean. It isn’t a style or a genre; it’s a feeling. ”

Bio by Adam Sweeting.