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Friday, May 29, 2015

Using words to create pictures

“Life happens, and I write about it wherever I am.” – Melissa Etheridge

A native of Leavenworth, Kan., Melissa was born on this date in 1961 and almost from the time she could walk and talk she was interested in music, singing everywhere she went and learning to play the guitar at age 8.

Known for her mixture of "confessional lyrics, pop-based folk-rock, and raspy, smoky vocals," her songs often are inspired by her own experiences. “But, sometimes,” she said,  “they (the words) are more than my real-life and, conversely, my life is more than just my songs.”

Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004 (now in remission) she underwent surgery and chemotherapy and said it caused her to celebrate life each and every day. "I don't have a bucket list," she said.  "Whatever I do each day IS my bucket list."

A gay rights activist she wrote her award-winning album “Yes, I Am” about being gay in the early 1990s and has continued to be a champion for gay rights since. She is also a committed advocate for environmental issues and the use of biofuels.

Melissa Etheridge

There are a remarkable 74 You Tube videos of her performing, and each is a feast for its vivid expression and presentation.  “As an artist, singer and songwriter,” she noted,  “I try to use my words to create pictures in people's minds.”

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