Melanie Martinez finished in the top six in season three of The Voice, but she has done a stellar job of shifting away from the dreaded “reality star” tag with her excellent debut Cry Baby album, which blends the Gothic steampunk of the Dresden Dolls with the chanteuse charm of Lana del Rey. She plays two nights at the Larimer Lounge in October, so we had a chat…M
Yellow Scene: With the album you’ve really stretched out since The Voice to the point that a lot of people have forgotten you were on it, if they knew at all, and you’re being taken seriously as an artist. Is that gratifying?
Melanie Martinez: Yeah. It definitely feels good because I worked so hard after the show to show that I’m a songwriter and an actual artist, and not just someone on a singing show. At first, that is what people saw me as and it was really hard for me to prove that. I’m happy that my album’s out now because I’ve been working on it for almost two years and really putting together the concept. It’s great to be seen as an artist, because I worked for that.
YS: Do you think it worked to your benefit that you didn’t win, but finished in the top six and got all the exposure without being tagged a Voice winner?
MM: Yeah. I definitely think that it’s better that I didn’t win. I didn’t really want to win in the first place. The whole goal is to go as far as you can without getting screwed over with winning, because you get signed to a not-so-great deal. I’m just happy that it worked out the way it did.
YS: Are you happy with the reaction Cry Baby has been getting?
MM: It’s been really cool seeing people’s feedback and which songs are their favorites. When I asked people on Twitter what their favorite songs are, they’re much different to what they are now. They keep finding new favorites, and I think that’s amazing because that’s what I do when I listen to an album I really like – I always find new favorites. It’s been very cool seeing that.
YS: What can we expect from the sets this time?
MM: It’s definitely going to be different this time because we have lights and baby blocks that light up. It’s going to be really fun because we haven’t had that kind of stuff ever before. Also, new songs from the album. It’s going to be a fun time. I’m really excited.
YS: When this tour’s over, what’s next?
MM: After the tour, I am going to be spending all of December and the holidays writing the next album. I’ve been really wanting to write and it’s hard on the road. I’m actually going to be starting while on tour, but I’m going to be focussing on that for the whole month in December, so that is super-exciting for me.
Melanie Martinez plays with Handsome Ghost at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, October 6 and Wednesday, October 7 at the Ogden Theater; 935 E Colfax Ave., Denver; 303-828-1874; $15-$50.