Melissa Ellis is an award winning singer-songwriter and a 2020 quarterfinalist of the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN where she shared the stage with over 100 rising solo/duo blues acts from all over the world.
Beginning her professional career as a singer/actress/dancer in theater at the age of 16, she performed in regional tours before moving on to study classical and jazz music at Tennessee Technological University as a vocalist while pursuing a singing career in Nashville.
In 2009, Melissa released her debut album Melissa Benjamin, lending her seasoned talent to the world of bluegrass & gospel. Her original single, “Crossville,” was adopted by her hometown as the official city song. While touring, she found new inspiration and started writing more original songs. With new songs came a new sound that evolved into a more soulful genre.
Melissa’s sophomore album, Just Me, was released in 2011 and as a multi-instrumentalist, the album showcased her musicianship on guitar and piano, as well as more of her original material.
Melissa’s latest musical journey brings out the raw emotional sounds of blues & her training in jazz. Her repertoire includes her original songs mixed with re-imaginings of familiar classics that are presented in fresh new ways. Melissa has landed opportunities that have placed her on world renowned stages, on radio, on television, and at high profile festivals, including Nashville’s acclaimed CMAfest where her soulful style was showcased among the sea of rising country twang.