September 15—Melissa Etheridge loves opera.
But don’t expect the Grammy Award-winning musician to sing an opera during her performance at the Santa Fe Opera on Thursday, September 22.
“No, there won’t be any of that,” she laughs. “Santa Fe is one of my favorite places to perform. I’m happy to be back and performing in a world-class venue.”
Etheridge will play with Keb’ Mo’ in Santa Fe.
She’s spent decades blazing a trail in music while racking up a number of hits along the way.
In September 2021, Etheridge released the album, “One Way Out”, which features nine tracks that didn’t quite make the cut in the 1980s and 1990s.
In October, the story of his life heads to Broadway with the musical “My Window.”
“It’s my life,” she said. “It’s my music and my songs. It’s a one-man show. It’s so exciting to express myself in a new medium. I was a theater geek in high school. When I joined a band and started to make money, I knew I was going to have to put acting aside.”
Etheridge burst onto the rock scene in 1988 and has never looked back.
She is known for her confessional lyrics and hoarse, smoky voice. His hits “Bring Me Some Water”, “No Souvenirs”, “Ain’t It Heavy”, “I’m the Only One” and “Come to My Window” are staples of his sets.
“I’m always going to play the hit songs,” she says. “I also shape my sets based on the type of place we play. This time around, I dug deep into my catalog. I take two albums and dive deep into each one.”
Etheridge says being able to build the set list this way gives him a greater appreciation for his work.
“When I was younger, it was about getting the music out as fast as possible because you were headed for the next thing,” she says. “Telling stories is the reason I got into this business. Now I can review stories and remember where I was when I wrote them.”
With “One Way Out,” Etheridge says it was perfect for the pandemic.
Her record label, BMG, contacted her for content.
“I had already recorded the songs three or four years before,” she explains. “They got caught in the mix and it was the right time for these songs to come out.”
Predictably, Etheridge’s life has changed dramatically since she started acting.
She is a mother and balances work and personal life.
“When I was in my twenties and early thirties, I had all the time in the world to write,” she says. “I was a traveling troubadour. I wrote anywhere. Now my life is very rich and filled with so many things that I have to schedule when I have to write. My children have great respect for what I do. At home, I’m not the rock star. I’m the mom.”
Melissa Etheridge & Keb’Mo’
WHEN: 8 p.m. Thursday, September 22
WHERE: Santa Fe Opera House, 301 Opera Drive, Santa Fe
HOW MUCH: $61 to $201, plus fees, at santafeopera.org