The Okoboji Protective Association announces Melissa Etheridge to headline Blue Water Fest.

One of rock’s most enduring and favorite female singer-songwriters will headline the evening concert at this summer’s Okoboji Blue Water Festival on Saturday, August 13. Melissa Etheridge – the artist with the raspy, smoky voice who has remained one of America’s favorite performers – will continue the festival’s reputation for drawing name acts to the concert stage. “We are proud to bring Melissa Etheridge to Okoboji to culminate our event,” said festival co-chair Greg Drees. “She has sustained a more than three-decade career of excellence.”

The festival is an all-day family event to raise public awareness of water quality issues in the Iowa Great Lakes. The concert brings completion to the day’s activities. Etheridge will perform with her band on the new stage in Preservation Plaza at the Arnolds Park Amusement Park. “The concert is our way of wrapping up the day of water quality education,” said festival co-chair Julie Peterson.

Etheridge is an artist of conviction and the author of confessional lyrics, reflecting on her experiences as a breast cancer survivor and the architect of the Melissa Etheridge Foundation, which dedicates monies for research into opioid addiction.

Etheridge’s early career blossomed quickly with the release of her self-titled first album in 1988. She accomplished memorable songwriting achievements, such as “Ain’t it Heavy,” which won her a Grammy Award in 1992. The following year, she won artistic and commercial critical acclaim with her fourth album, “Yes I Am.” That collection included “Come to My Window,” the searing song of longing that won her a second Grammy for Best Female Rock Performance.

Etheridge’s career remained vibrantly relevant into the next millennium, and in 2007 she won the “Best Song” category at the Academy Awards for “I Need to Wake Up,” written for a noted documentary on global warming, An Inconvenient Truth.
Three more albums, “This is M.E.” in 2014, “Memphis Rock & Soul” in 2016 and “The Medicine Show” in 2019, her 15th studio recording, solidified Etheridge’s standing in the industry as a steadfast and creative artist. Never one to sit on her laurels, Etheridge release “One Way Out” in 2021, a collection of songs she wrote in the 80’s and 90’s that never made the cut. But they have now, and Etheridge fans can take a journey back in time to get a glimpse of her past.

The Okoboji Blue Water Festival welcomes Melissa Etheridge to the concert stage on August 13, 2022. Music lovers of all ages are invited to this free event to showcase one of rock’s best-loved performers.