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Mel Watson

How would you describe your music?

Folk fusion with a twist of jazz. Musical sculpture.

What is your role in your band? In the studio? In business or marketing decisions?

"I play solo and with my duo partner who is a virtuoso cellist named Corbin Keep. I can write when ever I feel like it, I don't feel like I have to turn on any creative faucet. I feel it is always there, at any time. We write together. I have my own little studio and have recorded my last two releases from there. I run a little independent label called 100th Monkey Records. I make and release my own music. I also book for a couple of other artists non exclusively. I create projects for example the last one i did was called Compassionism. A compilation album created to raise awareness of animal cruelty. 100% of the profits going to PETA. "

Describe your gear.

Takamine Acoustic Guitar,Yamaha Trumpet, an old Lyon Healy Soprano Sax, Yamaha Flute, Werl Tenor Horn, various percussion pieces. I use a mac set up to record my own music.

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Do you think being a woman and a musician is different from being a man and a musician? If so, how? Was there a moment that made a difference clear to you?

"Yes I think there is probably a difference, but I prefer to contemplate the similarities.

When you go beyond the surface of a musician, man or woman, dive beyond the person, the personality, all the stuff that is on the surface, and dive into the heart of a musician, that is the place where you find the most precious of gifts. It is that place, that when expressed through sound, connects us on levels that are unable to be expressed with such intensity in any other way. To me music is the most powerful art form and there is no difference between the heart of a male or female musician. "

Do you see differences between generations of women musicians?

I think women musicians of the past had a battle to be able to be a musician more so than women do now. But I can say, that when you have the burning desire inside, it doesn't matter, you just do it. I did.

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Did anyone ever give you any valuable advice about making your way in the music industry? What advice would you give to a woman musician just starting out?

"I had boundless support from my music teacher, and my parents. My father said ""it's all about the marketing and management....."" I didn't take his advice, but he was right. i was interested in making my own way, and finding my own path.

Be you. This is the most valuable advice I would give any one starting out. I want to hear what you have to say, not what you think I want to hear. :) "

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Why did you choose to play the instrument you play?

"I love making music, and so I try to play the sounds I hear. Trumpet was my first instrument, I loved the dynamic range of the instrument. I used to love playing loud, now I am appreciating the softer qualities of the horn. :) "

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