Mel Parsons – The Tuning Fork December 16, 2021

Mel Parsons re-heats the Auckland live scene with her warm voice and cool songs.

It’s my third trek down to The Tuning Fork since things have opened up in Auckland and is seems with each show, the crowd, the venue and the artists are getting the hang of this again.

Mel ParsonsSadly, your intrepid reviewer still needs more practice as I showed up just in time to catch the end of Mel’s first set! Who knew she was on at 8pm??

Fortunately she was back on a 9 with a new outfit and eight more songs to perform for us.

The vibe seems to be loosening up at these shows. This was a Thursday but it looked like a “full house” of about 100 fans seated at tables. But, we could either order from tables or go to the bar which made life easier for me.

This was another one-woman show, similar to last Thursday with Anna Coddington.

Mel returned just after 9 and began set two with Come Over Lover, a tune from her Glass Heart album that could very well be a post-lockdown love song. “I am detached, yeah, I’ll make a new start” Mel sang in her gorgeous honey-soaked voice.

Up next, a new song, Headland, inspired by her days working on a sheep farm…required creds for any Kiwi singer/songwriter. For this one she was accompanied by her “drum” machine and electric guitar.

One thing about Mel, she does like to talk about her songs and she knows how to keep the audience engaged…eliciting a bit of verbal back and forth. However, from time to time, we also got a lengthy bit of silence as the dreaded tuning took over the show. I minor gripe for an otherwise excellent gig.

The tuning did result in a comment from the audience, noting that this was indeed, The “Tuning” Fork. Groans all around as Mel called out the “Dad” joke.

In addition to favourites such as I Got The Lonely and Don’t Wait, we were treated to another newbie titled Darkness and the a lovely cover of Greg Johnson’s Isabelle.

The encore was an upbeat version of Far Away, complete with an audience clap-along, fortunately in time (mostly).

Overall, this was a beautiful Thursday night…old friends were in the audience and Mel sounded as good as ever. We’ll be looking forward to a new album next year and a full band tour!

Marty Duda

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Mel Parsons set list:

  1. Come Over Lover
  2. Headland
  3. Already Gone
  4. I Got The Lonely
  5. Don’t Wait
  6. Darkness
  7. Isabelle
  8. Far Away