Monday, October 21, 2013

MELA in November

The first Mela of the Fall will take place on Samhain, Dia De Los Muertos, All Souls Day- aka the day after Halloween, November 1st.

Join Mela featuring guitar by Angad Singh, percussion by Cody Rahn, Bass by Alex Minier, and a few tunes reconnecting with Elsa Nilsson on Flute. Mela's performance will be followed by Vanta, a collaboration featuring amazing musicians rooted in world music and jazz.

Two Moon Art House and Cafe
315 4th ave (Between 2nd and 3rd street)
Park Slope Brooklyn

8pm- Mela
9pm- Vanta

Come to reconnect with the spirits and welcome the new season with music and energy!

Monday, June 10, 2013

June News

Hello friends and fans-
I hope you are enjoying the warm weather! The summer solstice is almost upon us, and I'm looking forward to the long days and warm nights filled with music and creativity that the summer always brings! Please join me for a few special events this month:

June 15th
Mela at the Waterfront Museum
290 Conover Street

Inline image 1

Melanie Closs- marimachu, ukulele, guitar, vocals
Alex Minier- upright bass
Cody Rahn- percussion
Erin Webb- vocals

Ruby, Lily, and Evia- Mela's students!

Ongoing- ends July 10th

Support The Other Side- 
empowering women globally with drama and music

Please spread the word to your network and support The Other Side. We work with communities in New York and India, creating an exchange of personal stories through drama and music to empower girls to demand equality and justice for themselves.

Our online campaign supports the exchange of stories for our first after-school program in the fall for 4th, 5th, and 6th graders.

Find out more and support here:

And please spread the word!

Inline image 2

Soak in all the summer sunsets and nautical adventures! See you at the bottom of the ocean,

Inline image 3

Sunday, March 31, 2013

A true Mela in India!

Mela is a Sanskrit word meaning "festival" or "gathering of people". You might have heard of a big kum mela recently where millions of people flocked to the sacred crossing of two holy rivers, the Ganga and the Yamuna, plus Saraswati, a mythical river, to bathe and worship. Well this Brooklyn-born Mela did visit the Ganga this year, plus brought her own gathering to two concerts in India!

I spent 4 weeks teaching drama and music in a rural girls school in Anupshahr, Uttar Pradesh. You can read about The Other Side, my program, here. After a few impromptu ukulele sessions on the roof of the volunteer dorm where I was staying, I decided to do two performances at the school. One was at International Women's Day on March 8th, and the other was a mini-concert for the volunteers, teachers, and the girls who were training in the Call Center. I also taught a few teachers and students how to play the Ukulele.

On March 23rd, I performed a full set at Kunzum Travel Cafe, Hauz Khas Village, in Delhi. Kunzum Travel Cafe is a very cool spot within a very cool area, a place for travelers to gather and drink coffee, share stories, and connect, a perfect venue for Mela. Many friends from Delhi and Anupshahr showed up for the gig, including new fans and friends from Delhi and around the world.

The interior of Kunzum Travel Cafe

While vacationing with the Lal family in Goa after my time in north India, myself and Angad Singh ended up changing the words to the Mela song "Dancing Water" to make it "Jungu Caca", a made up world in the sky created by Laila-Noor Lal, Angad's 3 1/2 year old cousin :)
Look for a video and recording of that soon!

Besides actually making the promised recording of the non-lyrical piece Sarasvati that I've been planning for a long time, I'm also working on a song I wrote about Anupshahr, and hoping to write another song about some of the people I met in India. India is inspiring on so many levels, and I hope it will infuse my music this spring and summer.

Videos of all the performances in India coming up soon on youtube!

Thank you to everyone who supported me during this trip and made it possible for Mela to be a part of The Other Side: India! Check back soon for the next performances!

Monday, January 21, 2013


Oops! I haven't posted in a while! Well, here's what's been going on:

I played a great show in January with Brett Saxon at Bar 4, which featured a collaboration with Angad Singh on a few tunes. Bar 4 has a REAL piano so my fingers were very, very happy.

I've also released a new bandcamp album you can download of a live recording from Spike Hill in July 2012. You can check it out and download it here.

That will be the last show I'll play before I travel to India for a theatre education project with girls.

In the meantime, I'm working on new songs, an instrumental/non-lyrical piece inspired by Indian Ragas and pentatonic melodies, using some weird (for Mela) time signatures, called Sarasvati. The goal is to make a home recording where I play all the instruments.

I'm also working on a few new songs in collaboration with Angad Singh. We're working out a piece where he taps on Matilda, my Marimachu. I'm still figuring out what lyrics and melody will be :)

There's a possibility I'll play a small set with Angad in New Delhi in March. Stay tuned for details!

I'm also developing a living room tour this summer in New York, Boston, San Francisco, Philly, and anywhere else that I can bring a bunch of people to a living room to hear my tunes! Let me know if you are interested.

Oh and hey! Follow me on twitter:

Monday, December 3, 2012

Free wine! Free make-up! Free Food!

Hi friends and fans

This December we have two special events a- happening.

Friday December 7th-
Mela live at Botta Di Vino 7-9pm, featuring Nidia Medina
SHADES OF WINE- giveaways from Sephora and Mary Kay Cosmetics!
Support this great wine shop in Red Hook (businesses in Red Hook need a lot of love after Sandy)
It's a tasting! That means free wine!
357 Van Brunt St. Brooklyn

Monday December 10th-
Mela @ LIC Bar- 9-10pm
featuring Cody Rahn, Alex Minier, Nidia Medina, and Becca Schall
45-58 Vernon Blvd. Long Island City, NY 11101
Can't wait to sing and consume free things with you!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Upcoming Fall shows

Earth mothers and sky fathers,

Join Mela at a series of very exciting Brooklyn events this fall!

October 13th- 4-5pm Gowanus Girls @ Gowanus Grove, Brooklyn
(girl-run craft and food market! Enjoy some sangria and hear some Mela tunes)


2-3pm Mela @The Waterfront Museum, Red Hook- featuring music set to poetry and others lyrics. Lets go back in time and travel across the globe, from Shakespeare's England to Ireland, China, Peru, and India...

Featuring Angad Singh on guitar and a small chior of sirens.


4-5pm Gowanus Girls, @Gowanus Grove, Brooklyn!- enjoy the rest of the evening with drinks and more Mela fun times!

November 16th- Special Event Women of Color Wine Tasting and skin tone pairing-
7-9pm, Botta Di Vino, Red Hook
featuring Nidia Medina

Hope you can make it to dance, sing, meditate, discuss, drink, eat, and be merry with Mela this fall! It's the best season!

love and harmonies,