Originally published in the January 25, 2016 issue of Country Weekly magazine.
Hometown: Wellington, Fla.
New Single: “Daddy’s Money”
Why You Should Know Her: Brooke has played major country shows like the Tortuga Music Festival in her home state of Florida and opened for such acts as Alan Jackson, Sugarland and Florida Georgia Line. Her new single, “Daddy’s Money,” not to be confused with the 1996 Ricochet single of the same title, hits radio in February. The single will be part of a full-scale album project that will drop in 2016.
Made of Money
“My single, ‘Daddy’s Money,’ is actually the opposite of the song by Ricochet. I never had Daddy’s money. My dad was a drummer in a country band by night and a carpenter by day. He had a million side jobs and always worked really hard to put food on the table and give me everything I wanted. He always told me that I could be whatever I wanted. I co-wrote the song and it was definitely inspired by my dad.”
Work and Play
“My dad taught me a lot about having a good work ethic. And this will tell you something about him. When I moved to Nashville about three years ago, my mom and dad came with me. Once we got my mattress in the house and finished unloading everything, it was about 11 p.m. on a Tuesday night. And Dad said, ‘All right, we’re going out.’ And I’m like, ‘Dad, it’s 11 o’clock at night.’ But he said that we’re in Nashville and we’re going out. So, we went downtown and ended up at Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, like every tourist and newcomer [laughs]. I ended up getting onstage and singing three songs with the band and they offered me a job. That was a really crazy thing. But it wouldn’t have happened without Dad insisting that we go out.”
“I have learned to roll with the punches after moving to Nashville. I knew I was going to have to have thick skin and be able to take criticism. When I first came here, so many people told me that I was a good singer but I should probably get into a duo with a male artist and not try to be a [solo] artist. Maybe they thought that would make it easier for me. I wouldn’t necessarily call that rejection, but it’s close. I looked at it as an opportunity. There are not a lot of females out there now and there needs to be. So, I never thought twice about being in a duo. I’m going to do what I do and if people like it, that’s great.”
Blues and Rhythm
“I only knew country music until I was about 14. I really fell in love with R&B and blues while I was in college. I have definitely drawn a lot of inspiration from blues and I think what is so cool about country right now is that it does incorporate a lot of R&B influences. It’s a great time to be in this genre.”
“I have always been a vocalist first. Guitar came later for me and it’s kind of crazy how that happened. I think I was 21 and I had to have my tonsils taken out. I wasn’t able to sing for about three weeks and that was really tough. For me, not singing is like not breathing. Before my grandfather passed away, he left me his guitar. So, when I couldn’t sing, I sat down to learn to play guitar and learned some chords right away. It kind of came out of necessity. Now, I love to play it.”
“I learned about songwriting from being in Nashville. I had never written a full song before I moved here. I had some that were half finished and I had ideas for songs. The leader for the house band at Tootsie’s asked me one time what else I wanted to do in Nashville, and I said, ‘Write songs.’ He said, ‘Perfect. On Tuesday, we’re gonna write your first song.’ He took me under his wing and helped me finish one. That was such an incredible thing.”
photo by Joseph Llanes/BBR Music Group