* 02 Feb 1985, American jazz singer-songwriter
I am portraying different artists for “Universal Music France” and Melody Gardot is supposed to be one of them. On the day of the shooting, the release coordinator calls and tells me that Melody does not want to be photographed. Period! Instead of sitting around, I decide to go to the recording studio and meet with Melody, whom I have never met before. After being introduced to each other, I show her one of my recent portraits of Gregory Porter. She likes it so much that she wants to take pictures at once. However, since the label called the shooting off, there is no equipment and assistant ready. Fortunately, we could reschedule and meet again a few days later for a tiny 15minutes that will mark the beginning of a wonderful friendship.
Melody Gardot was born in New Jersey and was brought up by her grandparents. Her grandmother was a Polish immigrant. Her mother, a photographer, travelled often, so they had few possessions and lived out of suitcases. Melody started music lessons at the age of nine and began playing piano in Philadelphia bars at the age of sixteen. In 2003, she was injured in a bicycle accident and was confined to a hospital bed for a year. During her recovery, she learned how to play the guitar and started writing songs, which were made available on iTunes as "The Bedroom Sessions". She began playing these songs at venues in Philadelphia and was noticed by employees of the radio station WXPN, which helped to start the career of Norah Jones. She was encouraged to send a demo tape to the radio station, which ultimately found its way to the Universal Music Group. She released her first album “Worrisome Heart” in 2008 and her second "My One And Only Thrill" in 2009, which brought her her first Grammy nomination.