The singer has had a failed development deal with EMI and previously worked as a session musician for the likes of Kasabian and the Happy Mondays, but she's never been given her own big break. She told Digital Spy that this year's X Factor feels like a "now or never" moment in her life.
Watch Digital Spy's interview with Melanie Masson:
Melanie revealed that for a long while she didn't want to be apart from her children, but she now believes that she had to go for her lifelong dream. "The worst that can happen is they say you're rubbish, get off," she laughed.
The 44-year-old insists that her "age is irrelevant" and that she isn't concerned about competing against wild teenagers and getting criticism from TV judges such as Tulisa, who are nearly half her age. "[Tulisa] is an intelligent and talented woman," said Masson.
Discussing her musical tastes and favourite acts, Masson said that she was a big fan of indie bands such as the Kaiser Chiefs and claimed that her musical heroes were "anything that you would find at the original Woodstock festival".
The X Factor continues on Saturdays on ITV1.