Melissa Etheridge will release her latest album, titled The Medicine Show, on April 12th, via Concord Records and has rolled out a 28-date tour in support of the set. Opening for Etheridge on the road at select gigs will be old friends Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo along with Liz Phair. Etheridge will hit the road next week in Europe for her Yes I Am 25 tour, celebrating the quarter century mark of her 1993 multi-platinum, Grammy-winning, Yes I Am collection.

According to the press release, The Medicine Show "deals with universal themes of renewal, reconciliation, reckoning, compassion and, most profoundly, healing. Through the songs (Etheridge) processed the deep fears and hurting she saw in the nation on collective and personal levels."

Etheridge, who heads up her own cannabis business Etheridge Farms, went on to say, 'Calling the album The Medicine Show puts straight up, front and center, that this is about health, wellness, cannabis, this new thought, new paradigm, however you want to talk about it, however you want to understand it. It influences every song on the album. We’re not afraid of this anymore. We’ve come a long way."

Etheridge's "The Medicine Show" tour kicks off on March 29th and 30th in Bonita Springs, Florida at  Southwest Florida Event Center and runs through July 13th at Chandler, Arizona's Chandler Center for the Arts. In the middle of the tour — from March 31st to April 7th — Etheridge will take part on the third "Melissa Etheridge Cruise," which travels from Tampa to Harvest Caye, Costa Maya, and Grand Cayman. Joining Etheridge this time out will be Joan Osborne, Paula Cole, Shawn Colvin, and Antigone Rising, among others.

Melissa Etheridge says that luckily, her pipes are not only intact, but these days, she's actually singing better than ever: ["I think my voice is in better shape than it's ever been. I think I've learned how to take care of my body and that makes my voice stronger. I really didn't get that when I was younger. And just sort of wisdom through the years; you can just sort of reach into that on the performances."] SOUNDCUE (:21 OC: . . . on the performances)

Although Etheridge is still able to release new music and have it sell and chart highly, these days that's the last thing she concentrates on regarding her career: ["I can look at charts. I can look at things and go 'OK, what does that mean?' The only thing I know is the people that come to see me live. Then I know 'Oh, this is good. This is fun. This is powerful.' As long as people want to come and see me live, then I have a place. All the other stuff I don't really get."] SOUNDCUE (:16 OC: . . . don't really get)

Melissa Etheridge will next perform on February 18th in Manchester, England.

JUST ANNOUNCED: Melissa Etheridge North American tour dates (subject to change):

March 29, 30 – Bonita Springs, FL – Southwest Florida Event Center
April 10 – New York, NY – The Town Hall
April 13 – Montclair, NJ – Wellmont Theater
April 14 – Lynn, MA – Lynn Veteran's Memorial Auditorium
April 19 – Stateline, NV – Harrah's Lake Tahoe – South Shore Room
April 20 –  West Wendover, NV – Peppermill Concert Hall
April 23 – New Braunfels, TX – Gruene Hall
April 24 – Irving, TX – The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory (with Liz Phair)
April 25 – Catoosa, OK – Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa – The Joint
April 27 – Lake Charles, LA – Golden Nugget Lake Charles
April 28 – New Orleans, LA – Saenger Theatre (with Liz Phair)
April 30 – Chattanooga, TN – Walker Theater
May 1 – Augusta, GA – Miller Theater
May 2 – Durham, NC – Carolina Theatre of Durham
May 3 – Virginia Beach, VA – Sandler Center
May 6 – Lancaster, PA – American Music Theatre
May 8 – Springfield, OH – Clark State Performing Arts Center
May 9 – Jim Thorpe, PA – Penn's Peak
May 11 – Plymouth, MA – Plymouth Memorial Hall
May 12 – Portland, ME – State Theatre
June 20 – Des Moines, IA – Hoyt Sherman Place
June 25 – Vienna, VA – Wolf Trap (with Pat Benatar/ Neil Geraldo and Liz Phair)
June 29 – Webster, MA – Indian Ranch
June 30 – New York, NY – Times Square – World Pride Closing Ceremony
July 4 – Elk Grove Village, IL – Elk Grove Village Mid-Summer Classics Concert Series
July 8 – Boulder, CO – Chautauqua Auditorium
July 13 – Chandler, AZ – Chandler Center for the Arts

Source: Pulse of Radio