Brand New Key

"Brand New Key" is a pop song written and sung by folk music singer Melanie Safka in 1971.


Brand New Key (WORD)
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Initially a track of Melanie's album Gather Me, produced by Melanie's husband, Peter Schekeryk, "Brand New Key" was known also as "The Rollerskate Song" due to its chorus. It was her greatest success, scoring No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart during December 1971 and January 1972. Billboard ranked it as the No. 9 song of 1972. It also scored No. 1 in Canada and Australia and No. 4 on the UK Singles Chart.

Melanie was a prolific singer-songwriter who profoundly influenced both folk and rock music. She was one of only three solo female performers at the original 1969 Woodstock Music and Art Fair. Janet Joplin and Joan Baez were also performing at the multi-day event. In 1971, Melanie, alongside her late husband, manager, and producer Peter Schekeryk, founded Neighborhood Records. This groundbreaking move marked the establishment of the first female-owned independent label in rock history. Melanie’s entrepreneurial spirit paved the way for future generations of female artists seeking autonomy in the male-dominated music industry. In the next four decades she released 31 albums and was working on her 32nd album when she died on January 23, 2024 at the age of 76. Melanie’s impact extended beyond her own performances, with artists like Nina Simone, Ray Charles, Miley Cyrus, and Morrissey recording her songs. Her dynamic voice, pioneering spirit, and contributions to the industry have left an indelible mark on the landscape of music history. (from USA Herald).

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