• Music

Melissa Ferrick

Professor of the Practice

Melissa Ferrick signed with Atlantic Records in 1992 at the age of 21 after touring with British rocker Morrissey in the US and the UK. She released her debut and sophomore albums on Atlantic before moving on to Independent label W.A.R. Records in 1996. In 2000 Ms. Ferrick founded the nationally distributed independent record label Right On Records. Over the last twenty-seven years she has released seventeen albums, one documentary, one covers album, and performed more than six thousand shows. Her songs have been placed in major and independent films and on TV networks including HBO, Sears, ABC, and TBS. She is regarded in the industry and by her peers as one of the most prolific, hardworking, honest writers and performers active in the independent music industry today.

Some of the artists Melissa has toured with include: Morrissey, Joan Armatrading, Weezer, Tegan and Sara, Mark Cohen, Paul Westerberg, Bob Dylan, John Hiatt, Ani DiFranco, k.d.Lang, G-Love & Special Sauce, Suzanne Vega, Shawn Colvin an Anais Mitchell. In 2011 Melissa accepted a teaching position at her alma mater, Berklee College of Music, where she taught for seven years.

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  • Harvard University: Ed.M
  • Berklee College of Music: Alumni


  • Finalist: Song of the Year,“Scenic View”—I.M.A (Independent Music Award), 2017
  • #3: Song of the Year, “Stars Outnumber our Hearts”—Boston Herald, 2016
  • #20: “Top 50 Indie Women in Music”—nonhollywood.com, 2015
  • Winner: Alt Country Album of the Year, “ “the truth is”—I.M.A., 2014
  • Panelist & Official Artist—SXSW, 2009 & 2013
  • Top 100 Most Influential Queer Activists—OUT Magazine, 2012
  • Winner: Song of the Year, “Singing With the Wind”—I.I.A.M.A. (International Independent Acoustic Music Award), 2011
  • Winner: Eight Boston Music Awards, 1999 - 2006

Courses Taught

  • The Business of Songwriting
  • D.I.Y. for the Creative Entrepreneur
  • Senior Seminar
  • Directed Study
  • Songwriting
  • Lyric 1 & 2

Professional Affiliations

Harvard Alumni Association

Research Interests

  • Creative entrepreneurship
  • Creative non/fiction academic essays
  • Critical inquiry of creative practice and performance
  • Divergent thinking
  • Mental illness and addiction within the performing singer songwriter population
  • Social and emotional learning