Biography Magazine - August 1998

Where Are They Now?

By David Martindale


Melanie: "I've really not been idle since "Brand New Key" insists Melanie, the one-named singer-songwriter associated with the late 1960s Woodstock era. "When people want to talk only about the good old days," she says, "there's this horrible implication that you're nothing now. But I know I'm better than I used to be."

Melanie--best remembered for such hits as "Lay Down (Candles in the Rain ) " (number six on the charts in 1969), "Look What They've Done to My Song Ma" (1969) and "Brand New Key" (number one in 1971)-ówas one of the performers who appeared at Woodstock in August 1969. In 1994, she returned to the original Woodstock festival site for a 25th-anniversary concert. In between, she continued her music and recording career, but kept a lower profile

Marriage and motherhood also claimed a large portion of her time and energy. She married her producer, Peter Schekeryk, in 1968; they have two daughters (Leilah and Jeordie, now in their 20s) and one son (Beau-Jarred, 16), and reside in Clearwater, Florida.

Melanie also still tours frequently, especially in Europe. She's mostly over the severe stage fright that marked her early career. In October and November, she'll make a 35date tour of Belgium and Holland.

As in America, her first name is all European fans require to identify her. Melanie's explanation for not using her married name of Schekeryk: "I'm not ashamed of it, but very few know how to pronounce it. When I began to sing, I used my maiden name (Safka). For some unknown reason, when my first album came out, it only carried my first name...and that's the way it has been ever since."


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