Melody Gardot is a Grammy-nominated American singer, writer and musician in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, though she considers herself a "citizen of the world". She has been influenced by such blues and jazz artists as Judy Garland, Janis Joplin, Miles Davis, Duke Ellington, Stan Getz and George Gershwin as well as Latin music artists such as Caetano Veloso. Her music has been compared to that of Nina Simone. Gardot follows the teachings of Buddhism, is a macrobiotic cook and humanitarian who often speaks about the benefits of music therapy. She has visited various universities and hospitals to speak about its ability to help reconnect neural pathways in the brain, improve speech ability, and lift general spirits. In a recent interview she was rumored to be working closely in a university in the United States to help develop a program for music therapy and the management of pain, something she has spoken about establishing in the future on her own.