The journey to this point has been anything but straightforward for Charlie Melrose. Born into a musical family – her Auntie is 80’s punk-pop royalty Hazel O’Connor and her father is industry veteran Neil O’Connor – she has struggled for many years to come to terms with the fact that her father prioritised his career over his daughter, severing contact with Charlie until she was an adult. Even then, despite making all the effort to strengthen their relationship at her end, she suffered the indignity of him “ghosting” her, breaking a stream of promises to only once again leave dead air. “The Original Ghost” is Charlie Melrose’s response, taking back control of the situation after a lifetime of hurt, confusion and disappointment, the song details the effects he had on her childhood and equally in her adult life and that she has finally had enough. It is an empowering message that will resonate with audiences across all genres and demographics.
Charlie Melrose has quite a musical career ahead of her – her brand of art-pop draws immediate comparisons to Christine and the Queens and her latest single reinforces both her thrillingly 80’s-infused electro-soul sound with her edgy, engaging persona. Her single-minded approach is akin to Lady Gaga, embracing influences whilst still allowing her own voice and performance to shine brightest. After feeling she was the cause of her father’s rejection for many years, this is in many ways a chance to start again for Charlie, the song spelling out very clearly the moment when she finally took control of a situation which had cast a shadow over her entire life:
“I told him there were to be no contact from me or with me and that was that. I’m done. It was the single most frightening and yet empowering thing I’ve ever done. I love the song because it captures that empowering spirit but it also highlights some of the difficulties I’ve faced, especially with relationships with men”
To many, “ghosting” is one of the perils of modern dating but Charlie has highlighted something so many people will have experienced in their family lives, to have had contact broken suddenly and shockingly with those who are nearest to them. “The Original Ghost” is a nevermore pertinent lesson in how to break free from such emotional shackles and to benefit creatively from situations which may appear all but lost.