The Roadburn Cafe

Places Unknown 

I thought maybe Peter was
coming for me
but I'm out of MGH
and getting the message,
"Stay alive Melanie, 
tell them who you are."

Peter Schekeryk, left for places unknown.
           October 26, 2010

Every Click Counts 

Ok, friends of me, my progeny and humanity, someone did my firstborn wrong.

She had worked really hard creatively and physically to get this youtube out and was up to thousands of views!

Then just like that, and because it was the best they could come up with or create,

a person with mean spirited intentions, took Leilah's video off!?!?  She's had to start from square one.

You can kiss away the bruises by clicking, or re clicking,

if you've done it've got the Beautiful People power do it in a day!

My dear ones, please make the girl smile, because a mother is as happy as her least happy child ~

then we'll work on getting gas prices down and on to happiness and peace for all mankind!

Thanking you in advance.


P.S. Here's the link:  Leilah's video on YouTube

Coming Clean 

I have an appointment at 10 so I got up at 6. It's only 20 minutes from here by car, but I have a situation, always have. 

I'd call it a problem but the word implies a solution.

Now for instance my clock says 7... um..I only just made coffee~ it's ok, I'm used to it. An hour has been sucked up!

I take two sips, and my phone reads 8:15 ~ you see , since I can remember, and maybe even before,

I've unwillingly shared my universe with a most perverse being. Invisible, as mysterious as my cat, even more so,  

yet no less real my dear ones, is The Thief of Time!


Our basic inspirations become part of what we create ~ I grew up listening to jazz.  My mother was a jazz singer, pre-fusion; my uncle was a protest singer, a union organizer; and I grew up listening to Pete Seeger.  Billie Holliday was considered a jazz singer but she chose, and even wrote, melodic songs whereas Ella was a vocal saxophone; her vocal style was inspired by those “jazz cats” ~ Billie’s was inspired by melody and emotion. I’m sitting here knowing the music scholars will be rebutting this.  It’s okay, I know these things because music is feel...and I know what I feel is true.  


When I first began performing, before the term "singer-songwriter" existed, they called me the female Bob Dylan. But now, in my genre, comparisons are inevitable...and it’s always to other female artists.  “Why?” I wonder.  It’s not a sport where we have men’s basketball and women’s basketball, for obvious reasons. But in music, there shouldn’t be gender boundaries. I’ve written songs well-suited for a man. (No pun intended.)


I read this blog where the writer was acknowledging me with being as good as Joni Mitchell, yet never getting the credit. Thanks, but no thanks.  We were both played on the radio and both had what had been termed “novelty hits”.  We were both women who wrote songs, and there the similarity ends. She was much more on the jazz side and I was all about melody and folk.  We’re totally different singers. Career-wise, I lived in the Northeast and married with children, as far away from schmoozing as possible. She didn’t...and moved to Topanga Canyon.


So, Joni, maybe we should, before we die, get together and have a good laugh about the craziness of this music business and its social inequities.


Instead of comparing me to Joni Mitchell, why not compare me to Randy Newman or Leonard Cohen? And did they ever call Bob Dylan, “the male Melanie”?


For your information, Time Warner has just put out an anniversary boxed set of more performances from Woodstock. I'm in it singing Tambourine Man & personally representing Bob Dylan, I made him a lot of


money ;)




A False Sense of Well Being 

I’m on the 42nd floor looking out over tops of other buildings with 42 or more floors, or stories, and the river and beyond to the small hills. The floor-to-ceiling, glassed-in balcony where I watch the construction of what looks intended to be a new building...most likely higher than mine. Below ground, there will be four additional levels. And it’s not parking. It’s being divided up into office or small, store-sized rooms. When construction is finished it will obscure a good part of my view.  I’ve only lived in this place in Brisbane but two days and I’m protective of my view.  It will be gone if ever I should come back. I’ll only have a small slice of the river and the initials on the tall buildings. The top of the glass walls open up and I stand against the glass, lower half. Just that small sheet of complete sheer, giving some complete balance and sense that I’m well in, a false sense of well being. If I could walk through, I would either fall or fly, “leap off the edge to see if you fall or fly.”  The car horn in my head beeped.  It’s funny they still call them horns. It’s a good thing too. That glass might have shattered or disappeared.  

I am in Byron Bay.  Tourists, sporting people, surfers...“Get around, get around, I get around…ooh-whee-ooh-whee-ooh.”  Gazing at a tree with the most intense purple blooms.  I think they’re called Tibouchina flowers. I haven’t gone anywhere, except far away.  It took quite a long time--all day-to get from Brisbane to Byron Bay. I woke this morning and fantasized the inner flap of my book, reading about the author….“She now resides in Byron Bay with her son Beau Jarred and paints surfboards as a hobby.  Beau teaches a world famous master class on summer and winter solstice on the beach inside the invisible pyramid that keeps the guitars demagnetized against the sand and pulling in all the beauty of creation. She works on her 12 acres on a new breed of purple tree.”

Tonight is a show. It’s funny they still call them shows. What is it I show? I show nothing but what I think I know, My Dear Ones, and just days away from knowing everything.  Here from Oz and a galaxy away from Auntie Em.




Photos by Beau Jarred Schekeryk

Where is Bruno? 

There were more people than I expected, as there wasn’t much promotion.  I’ve performed at the Olympia Theatre in Paris in the days of Bruno Coquatrix, the P.T. Barnum of Paris, when promoters took that word seriously, and it all fell on their laps to PROMOTE. Now performers are expected to ride their own social media horses to their own events. Hence, I’m afraid, ones more capable of promotion than, dare I say, their “craft” are the ones in people’s faces.


Where is Bruno Coquatrix?


True, it was over the top with them staging, what did they call them...publicity stunts, I think, had an artist go missing, and then turn up 3 days later, “just on a quiet vacation” or have them jumping out of a window to find later that “they were practicing trampoline, not shown in photo.” The great inventors, the game players.  Yes, Neil Bogart.  Peter the Great, himself. I was just an unwilling participant.  No, I wouldn’t go for the hippie wedding in Central Park, or a Melanie doll, or a fragrance.  “My fragrance? That’s just too personal.”


Now, everyone has a doll and/or fragrance.  People can do all sorts of things with these likenesses. Hmmm.  I’m still a bit Native American, even suspecting a photo can take a bit of your soul.  One glance in a mirror and you will forever be more in a mirror than in the moment.  “Ah, vanity, vanity” says the preacher ~ still, just a bit of effort on the part of people selling tickets to a Melanie show might be nice.  


I mean I try My Dear Ones, and you come.  Trouble is, my lot at present don’t seem to have many friends ~ now that is not a criticism.  I’m certainly not a large crowd person either.  But when I do a show, gig, performance ~ when I’m up there, I’d rather sing to filled seats. I’m funny that way ~ so in my mind, I just put people in the empty ones, that’s all.  Then I’m fine. But those promoters who do not live in my reality are not as pleased as I am.  They are disappointed in Melanie and I hate disappointing people, even promoters.


My point? Hmm, they need a name change. Any suggestions?  All the names in my head I’ve censored from this paper.  I have to work with these people!  So, help me here.  Let’s come up with a name, a title for the ones who want to sell tickets to a show. They can perhaps have genres.  We’re so fond of trapping musical types into a genre. For my kind of music, we could call them “Fringe Bingers”.  Way better than huckster don’t you think?  I didn’t say that. I think it must have been you.  You, with so few friends.  But they’re good ones, aren’t they My Dear Ones? Small in number maybe, but mighty.




Make it Work for Me 

The ultimate connect-the-dots ~ everything coordinated to GO at a pre-assigned moment. It’s been awhile since I’ve “launched”.  I forgot, I tweeted it yesterday before the “launch”. Forgive me, my dear ones ~ ready, set,




Hurry, hurry, hurry.


Get it now while supplies last.  Oh, you can’t say that.  There are endless supplies unless, of course, someone pulls the plug.  And, with me, anything can happen. I am about to be part of something that is going to happen ~ Make it Work for Me, available on a device near you.  





Christmas Eve 

One of the difficult tasks in the gift giving department is getting the sticky little tags off, the ones that reveal the price, or the sale price. Bonus if you can get the “clearance” label off and the two that preceded and gone down in small increments over the past months, and now in a last ditch effort, the little red tag goes on.  If the original tag was to stay, the receiver might think “Wow, she spent that much for this!?  She must really love me, poor thing.  She never could manage money.” Little do they suspect I paid fifty cents because I had a 20% off any-purchase-in-the-store coupon and I don’t really love them at all. Well, maybe in the grand sense.  


But this Christmas, the spirit has been sporadic and mostly evasive. Last year I did a Stage-It online show. I should have done that this year, but the tour in The Netherlands was an autumn one...then it was Florida.  I came home to Christmas like I was a visitor of, rather than a participant in. I put on my Christmas coat--bright green silk with reddish flowers really ridiculous, my muffin mitts and dingle-ball hat, red elf shoes and went to a school band concert. Analisa playing the french horn. The band conductor announced, “If you get in the mood, feel free to sing along.”  I closed my eyes when Come All Ye Faithful  started and sang with eyes closed and tears welling up, and feeling it, not noticing no one else was.  I opened my eyes to sideways glances and open mouths all looking in my direction ~ it’s okay, I got a little Christmas.


Analisa played very well.  She’s a natural born comedian, eleven years old, gangly, very long feet, braces--and with all that, beautiful. Funny how beauty cannot be disguised. I like that I didn’t embarrass her. I unintentionally embarrassed my children a great deal at school events.  They cared about what people thought. It seems it was the beginning of the backlash against the sixties, when people started becoming ridiculously well behaved and fashion became a uniform.  Marketing reared its head and people became self-enforcers of wear what is correct for your demographic socio-economic group, etc.  I probably would have continued happily being the oddball or the beatnik or hippie or freak. The terms and cliches used daily in mass media. If it were not for children who kept me informed, not so much by words but actions.  Anyway, Analisa wasn’t embarrassed which gives me great hope for the future which is nearly here and getting closer by the minute.


My tree is not entirely finished.  Most would say it is, but I know it isn’t. Even though Christmas Eve approaches, I’ve taken a sampling from all ten boxes of my ornaments to do the chore. You see, there is a point of no return.  You can tastefully space the trimmings.  But for me, something is wrong.  It’s not the universe, the world. I haven’t done enough, haven’t gotten everyone that perfect something, haven’t solved any of the world’s problems, yet I persist, and hang one more icicle. I bring the past to the present and it unfolds in the drama, comedy, mystery.  My story of Melanie, the tree. Why did some bale on me this year without a word, leaving me in mystery? Why did grief leave so soon? I need it to buffer from the harshness and the sharp edges. I string popcorn and cranberries and it all comes together in this tree creation. There is no answer except “yes”; nowhere to put our feet except one in front of the other; nothing more to do than let it go, let it slide. And I put the star on top of the tree. It’s Christmas, My Dear Ones. I brought you all here tonight to spend Christmas Eve with me.  There is a sense to all this. And we look up at the stars.





The Tops of Palm Trees 

The tops of palm trees. Not often the view in Florida unless flying or skyriding in a theme park. But they are foolish enough to put up high rises here and there. I am in the tower of the Boca Raton Resort, 11th floor of the 27 available. The wind’s been gusting and just died down, the sun’s come up.

I performed at the benefit last night for the Philippines. I hope they made a lot of money. So many good things one can do with money. And then I look around at the two-, three-million dollar boats, the Maza Ferrari Rolls Royces in shining black white, and this fabulous blue color. Jewels and lifted faces. And in the tops of the palms, I find solace. Yet I remind myself, I’m in a tower. Someday the wind will blow it all away. And I want to sing the pyro Jeni song from the Threepenny Opera...or maybe, Old Bitch Warrior. I want to say to these people, you can be relieved of your burden -- donate! What they raised last night is maybe a year’s worth of car washes for that beautiful Maza Fe-freaking-rarri. The ad in the spa brochure in my room reads “A ritual bath is available at the spa. This 50-minute ritual provides an all over feeling of well being and decadence”?


With love, my dear ones


P.S. The rooms were donated by the Boca Raton Resort, "Mizner's Dream".