Known simply as Melanie, this internationally popular singer-songwriter who's full name is MELANIE (Safka) Schekeryk has a reputation for innovation and setting the tone for other performers to follow. During her thirty-year-plus career, she has been signed to recording contracts by the very top executives in the music industry, personally, including; Neil Bogart, Clive Davis, Walter Yetnekoff and Ahmet Ertegun, all of whom, continue leading the industry.
Her unique folk/rock/ballad style led her to success with such songs as "Lay Down (Candles in the Rain)", "Beautiful People", "What Have They Done To My Song, Ma?", "Brand New Key" (Roller‑skates) and numerous others. Eighty million Melanie records have been sold during her career and Melanie continues to record and perform extensive tour schedules world-wide. Her latest CD has been released in Europe by Deshima Sony International and is entitled. "Shine On - The Latest and Greatest". A new album of all new songs is in the works to be released by the year-end in the U.S.
At age 4, Melanie played ukulele and sang 'Give me a Little Kiss' in a show called, "LIVE LIKE A MILLIONAIRE" on a local New York City radio station. She graduated from Red Bank High School in Long Branch, New Jersey and studied at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City. It was during this period that Melanie continued to develop her unique style as a singer, performing at local coffeehouses and clubs. Melanie's professional career began in 1967 after signing a publishing agreement with her future husband, Peter Schekeryk, leading to a recording contract with Columbia Records and the release of "Beautiful People" (first played by Roscoe on New York's WNEW FM).
Melanie's performance at the original Woodstock Music & Art Fair, New York in 1969 inspired her to write "Lay Down (Candles in the Rain)" and in 1970 the LP on Buddah/Kama Sutra Records went GOLD. From then on, it became a ritual for fans to light candles during Melanie's performances and this ritual quickly spread to other concert performers. In the summer of 1970, Melanie signed a publishing agreement with April Black Music (CBS) and Charlie Kopleman (who later became CEO of EMI Music).
In 1971, Melanie and her husband, Peter Schekeryk formed Neighborhood Records and immediately released Melanie's greatest success the US No.1 "Brand New Key" which sold over 3 million copies. Also in 1971 Melanie was given an honor of which she is still very proud: she was named official spokeswoman for UNICEF, which came about after she played at the United Nations opening of the General Assembly. She then agreed to forgo an American tour, at the peak of her career, in favor of a world tour in 1972 raising money for UNICEF (United Nations Children's Fund). Few artistes enjoying this level of success, would donate so much of their time to the benefit of others.
1975 Melanie signed with Clive Davis of Arista Records as one of the first artists on the label. After releasing two albums with Arista, she signed with Ahmet Ertegun of Atlantic Records and released "Photograph." which was produced by Ertegun and Schekeryk.
1985 Melanie wrote the 27-song score of a musical called Ace of Diamonds, which tells the story of a woman who learns that she is the daughter of Calamity Jane and Wild Bill Hickok published by April Blackwood Music (CBS).
Melanie's compositions have also been recorded by Cher, Dolly Parton, Deana Carter,. Meredith Brooks and Macy Gray among others. Melanie music continues to be featured in both screen and television scores.
In 1989. at the 41st Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Melanie was awarded an EMMY for the lyrics to: "The First Time I Loved Forever," written for the CBS production of "Beauty and the Beast ‑A Distant Shore.'
In 1999. Melanie delivered a riveting performance at the original site of Woodstock in Bethel, New York for the "Day In The Garden" celebration of the 30" Anniversary. While performing her favorites, she also delivered a mesmerizing tribute to Jimi Hendrix, with "Purple Haze." An audience of thousands were on their feet in appreciation‑-Shortly after, Melanie hosted and performed at an Amnesty International event in Washington DC and signed the Declaration of Human Rights.
In June. Melanie performs at the Libertarian National Convention in Los Angeles and her song; "Freedom Know My Name" is to become the party theme song for the upcoming national elections.
Melanie, a mother of three has also created a talented family. She works with her two daughters, Leilah (27) and Jeordie (26) , who perform as the group, "Safka" and her son, Beau-Jarred (18) who when not performing - vocals and (MIDI) guitar -, produces his Mom and Safka, now also writes his own songs, he is currently scoring the title song for a movie produced by Diane Ladd called, "Life Keeps On Moving."
Melanie is a star performer - for more than 30 years - in 2000, her career continues and she continues as a world humanitarian and talented star performer doing television and radio performance as well as live concerts around the world.
Did you know that Melanie .......