Melody Gardot's life story is so movie-of-the-week that it would dominate her music if her work wasn't so strong. At age 19, Gardot barely survived a hit-and-run accident that left her permanently disabled, ultra-sensitive to light and noise (thus the dark glasses and earplugs) and in constant pain. (She also uses a cane, has special seating and wears a TENS device, which helps with nerve pain.) The music therapy she underwent not only helped her regain her memory, language and fine motors skills (she learned to play guitar while lying flat in bed), it also made her realize an unshakable passion. Her first EP came out while she was still in the hospital and her first full-length was released soon after. Worrisome Heart was a solid addition to the jazzy singer-songwriter revival. Gardot occupies a comfortable middle ground between Norah Jones' mellow jazz, Inara George's whimsical indie pop and Tom Waits' early beatnik retro vibe. Her follow-up, My One and Only Thrill, was an even greater leap forward. A ravishing torch set, the album proved the singer-songwriter to be an old world talent for the 21st century.