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Interview: Singer/Songwriter Melody Gardot's 'One and Only Thrill'

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Melody Gardot / Photo by Nicholas Jbara
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The sound of Melody Gardot's voice feels like a swath of dramatic black and white, evoking images of film noir and mint juleps. In describing her demeanor and jazz-tinged music, words such as vamp, moxie, sass, and verve can't help but emerge. However, Gardot's easy delivery has been hard won. Six years ago, when her involvement with music was more of a flirtation, she was struck by a Jeep Cherokee while riding her bike. The following years presented staggering challenges—such as hypersensitivity to noise and light, and unbelievable pain throughout her body—but Gardot has fought through them. In fact, her singing and songwriting career came out of the music therapy she used to reconnect the neural pathways in her brain.

On the heels of her second major studio album release, My One and Only Thrill, Gardot is touring the United States and will appear at the Troubadour Monday night. LAist spoke with her last week to chat about the new record, why she's sworn off pants and why she loves Venice Beach.

LAist: You've said that this new album, My One and Only Thrill is ambitious and more cinematic than your debut. Which song off the new album do you think best reflects that?

Melody Gardot: It's a tie between "Our Love Is Easy" and "My One and Only Thrill." The beginning of "Our Love Is Easy" almost sounds like a funeral procession. I imagine these eight-foot tall men in giant cloaks carrying love in a casket. It's like a very gray scene—like M. Night Shyamalan meets Fellini. It's romantic, but it's really scary.