Okay, the video below is of course, the 1972 smash "Brand New Key" by Woodstock phenom Melanie, a record that today may strike you as either charmingly proto-feminist or deeply irritating on a purely aural level. In any case, therein lies a tale.
Before we get to that, I should add that although her music has never been particularly to my taste, I think she's on balance quite a bit better than her rep as a hippie relic suggests. Yeah, I found her irksome back in the day, but several of her songs (including "Key", I think) are pretty sharp, and the fact is she was the first woman singer/songwriter to set up her own successful indie record label, which makes her a pioneer worthy of respect from the rest of us sentient mammals, not to mention Ani DiFranco.
Okay, that said, cut to mid-80s Manhattan. I'm having dinner with some trendoid friends at a then fashionable yuppie joint when one of my culinary companions returns from the ladies room with a pleasant looking if unassuming woman (unknown to me) who is introduced as "my new best friend Melanie."
I shook her hand and then -- for no other reason than to be a fricking wiseguy -- I allowed how I particularly liked her 1972 smash hit "Brand New Chastity Belt."
At which point I realized that it was, in fact, THE Melanie.
She was not amused, in case you were wondering, but I'm assuming that by now she's gotten over it.