PERTH SUNDAY TIMES, W. A. 7th March 1976

MELANIE SAFKA, who will be at the Perth Concert Hall on March 15, started singing and making up songs very soon after she was born -- 29 years ago.

Her mother was a jazz singer, and Melanie recalls: "I started writing my own little songs, mostly imitations of what I'd hear my mother singing around the house. It wasn't until I was 13 or 14 that I begin to write about things that I found in myself. " Nowadays Melanie is one of the most respected singers and song-writers in America.

She has three gold records to her credit and awards for songwriting and Best Female Vocalist.

Some of her best-known songs are Candles in the Rain, Brand New Key and What Have They Done To My Song, Ma.

Melanie Safka


West Australian 15th March 1976

Melanie Safka with her alfalfa seeds in Perth yesterday.

Hotel sprouts

When the American singer Melanie Safka goes on tour there is one thing she never forgets -- her stock of alfalfa seeds.

" I grow alfalfa sprouts in hotel bathrooms," she explained yesterday.

"They're the freshest vegetables you can get when you're travelling - and so nutritious. " To demonstrate, the semi-vegeteranian Miss Safka produced a glass bottle of germinating seeds that she had brought from home.

"I started them in Melbourne last night,' the said. "In two days they'll be ready to eat. " The 28-year-old Miss Safka is a small woman with warm brown eyes and a slightly pensive air.

She arrived yesterday for appearances at the Perth Concert Hall tonight and tomorrow night.

She said her vegetarianism was less intense than it had been.


"I used to be a health fanatic," she said. 'Once I went on a 27-day fast, drinking only water.

"I think it was spiritual because after it was over I wrote some of my best songs.

"But I wouldn't advise anyone to go to such extremes. Juices are much safer," Miss Safka has built in impressive career as a singer, composer and recording artist. . .

She began writing music when she was about 13.

She charted a troubled course through pure folk, ethnic blues and the sad, songs of Appalachia into the  world-weary waters of Piaf, Brecht and Weill.

"At one stage I was a real purist, a snob," she said.

"I didn't like what Bob Dylan and others were doing to the songs they sang.

"But I've grown out of that. I know now that whatever you do with music is OK -- so long as it is honest. " --Alex Harris.


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