First Listen: Melanie O’Brien’s “Stars”

Hear a track here before the album drops!

Newfoundland chanteuse Melanie O’Brien has had such a hectic schedule of musical theatre and club performances she couldn’t find the time to settle down long enough to record an album. But a grant from MusicNL was the push and support she needed to make that time, and her album, Shining in the Blue, will be released at The Fat Cat on November 18th.

Below is a sneak peak, and the album opener, “Stars,” a strong and stunning promise of what the album holds.

O’Brien partnered with award-winning producer and musician Ian Foster to trim her catalogue of soulful folk-tinged compositions. Together they selected the eight songs which would become Shining in the Blue: a collection of emotionally charged tunes that run the gamut of life’s biggest emotions, from hope to heartbreak.

The album title, Shining in The Blue, is a reference to the tenacity of shining through all of your experiences, include those blue, harder moments. “Not just surviving it but shining through it all.”

Upon settling with Foster as producer, the two then rounded up a stellar supporting cast, including Fergus O’Byrne, Philip Goodridge, Jerry Stamp, Andrew McCarthy, Paddy Byrne, Chad Murphy, Nancy Hynes, and Adam Press. Scott Hammond of The Blue Room mixed the album, and it was mastered at Joao Carvalho Mastering.

“Imagine a team of scientists spliced the DNA of Dolly Parton and Brandi Carlisle,” reads the press release, “and created a dramatic fiery haired chanteuse who could make you laugh and cry all in the same song. That would be Melanie O’Brien.”

The St. John’s singer-songwriter and theatre performer trained at Sheridan College in Ontario where she studied performance and honed her striking, smoky voice and also began songwriting. In just her second year at the school, Melanie was awarded the Prime Time Radio scholarship for outstanding achievement in commercial performance.

Catch the album release on Friday, November 18th, 9pm at The Fat Cat on George Street.  It’s a $15 cover., with advance tickets at Fred’s Records, Exhale Pilates & Yoga Studio, or via email obrienmel@hotmail.com. That $15 also buys you an opening set by Philip Goodridge, and a closing set from her former band The Duds (She and Goodridge). Her guest band for the evening is: Ian Foster, Andrew McCarthy, Paddy Byrne, Philip Goodridge, Jerry Stamp, and Nancy Hynes.

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