On May 18, Michelle Meldrum, leader of the band Meldrum and former Phantom Blue guitarist, was rushed to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Burbank in critical condition. She passed away late afternoon Wednesday, May 21, 2008 as a result of a cystic growth on her brain that had restricted oxygen and blood flow to her brain rendering her brain dead.
Meldrum had just completed writing and recording the bands soon to be released album with drummer Gene Hoglan, along with the new lineup Michele Madden (vocals) and Laura Christine (bass). The surviving band members plan to release the album later this year in tribute to their fallen band-mate.
Those who knew Michelle recognize that she lived every moment for the music, and was regarded as both an exceptional guitarist and a nurturer by her associates, friends, family and son.
Meldrum, 39 is survived by her parents and three year old son, Jake Thomas. Her family and band members appreciate all the support that has been shown over the past few days through this trying time. A memorial tribute benefit will be announced in the following weeks.
Michelle Meldrum was born on Sept 28, 1968 in Detroit, Michigan to a family of musicians and actors. At 13, Meldrum moved to Los Angeles, California and started her career in music by forming the thrash metal band WARGOD with drummer Gene Hoglan (DARK ANGEL, DEATH, and STRAPPING YOUNG LAD). When WARGOD disbanded Meldrum continued her search for a band and become both co-founder and lead guitarist in all girl metal/rock band PHANTOM BLUE. PHANTOM BLUE released their self-titled debut album on Shrapnel Records as well as Roadrunner Records, and eventually landed a deal with major label Geffen.
Once PHANTOM BLUE disbanded after a successful run at fame, Michelle Meldrum moved to Sweden and formed her current band MELDRUM. After many triumphant tours with such acts as MOTÖRHEAD and BLACK LABEL SOCIETY, she reunited with Hoglan in 2006. Hoglan had appeared as a special guest on the MELDRUM album prior and played several events. Inspired to once again collaborate, Meldrum moved back to America where she and Hoglan began writing the aforementioned third MELDRUM album together.
Another life taken too soon. I became a Phantom Blue fan when I picked up their self-titled debut when it came out in ’89. Unfortunately, I hadn’t really kept up with the band or Meldrum. Thanks to Michelle for being a part of the soundtrack to my life and my condolences to her family, friends, and bandmates. Rest In Peace Michelle…..