Melissa Etheridge has much to celebrate these days.
The 53-year-old singer-songwriter married her partner Linda Wallem earlier this year and on Tuesday, she released her first-ever independent album, This Is M.E. "I've never been happier or healthier," Etheridge tells Entertainment Tonight's Nancy O'Dell and special guest co-host LL Cool J of her newlywed bliss.
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The singer also reacts to the Supreme Court's recent refusal to hear cases from five states seeking to keep same-sex marriage bans in place. As of Monday, same-sex marriage is now legal in Oklahoma, Utah, Virginia, Wisconsin and Indiana.
"It's natural," she says of the decision. "We have been in a process in the last 20 years of trying to take the 'ew' out of it. Of normalizing something that -- I know when I was a kid, it was criminal. You were mentally ill or something.
"It takes time," she adds. "And it's about love. We’re not hurting anybody."
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At her own May wedding in Montecito, Calif., Etheridge performed a brand-new song for her wife as they exchanged vows. The track, "Who Are You Waiting For?," is now featured on her new album.
"I had never sung a song looking in to someone's eyes that close," Etheridge says, recalling the tears rolling down her face. "It was a beautiful moment. I was very happy for it."
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Another song on This Is M.E. is "A Little Bit of Me," which Etheridge performed live on our stage! See the complete performance below.