Today we’d like to introduce you to Natalie Brooke.
Hi Natalie, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I grew up in a musical family and my dad taught me how to play guitar. I fell in love with the music of singer-songwriters like Jewel, Brooke Fraser, and Kacey Musgraves, and I have been writing my own songs for over 10 years now. Musgraves actually lead me to discover John Prine in 2019. His lyrics, especially “Sam Stone”, just stab you right in the heart and in such a surprising way.
I felt right at home in his happy, unpretentious songs and with the genre of Americana. I’m from southern California and worked for several years as a gigging musician in a duo and a cover band. In 2019, I was fortunate enough to be selected as a finalist to compete to open for Jewel in Denver, Co. I didn’t win, but that experience really stoked the fires for songwriting and I made up my mind to move to Music City!
Since landing in Nashville in 2020, I have been able to record a handful of my songs with some pretty amazing musicians, produced by Neilson Hubbard. The first of those recordings, “Blue Skies” came out July 23, 2021. I absolutely love the music community here. The writer’s rounds and co-writes have been both challenging and inspiring.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Like most artists, I have struggled with self-doubt. I released an EP in 2016 and got very discouraged by the lack of response. I was totally gonna go back to school to get a “safe” career in the medical field. I even took a few pre-requisite courses I was missing.
Right in the middle of one class, I was taking, I lost all motivation for it. All I wanted to do was write… and then the Jewel opportunity happened. I knew I had to follow this road!
Other than that, the challenge is always money! Trying to do your songs justice and working with the right kind of talent is expensive.
As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
I love when a song takes you by surprise with words you never would have thought would be in a song. There is not a whole lot new under the sun to write about it, but finding a new way to say it is everything in a great song! I especially like to laugh at myself in my songs.
I used to take myself way too seriously, and not admit things I knew I shouldn’t be thinking or feeling. Always calculating how something would be received. That’s way too self-conscious. Now, I like to admit those thoughts in my writing and turn around and laugh at them in the next line.
What were you like growing up?
Growing up, I was a pretty happy kid. I liked to read adventure books. I loved laying a sheet on the lawn in the backyard, and laying down with my dogs and daydreaming or writing little poems. I think I still have one called “My backyard”.
I went through a vinyl phase back then, when vinyl wasn’t cool. My family didn’t have a lot of money. We didn’t live in the best area, but my parents worked hard, loved me a lot, and gave me the priceless gift of music.
- Website: www.nataliebrooke.com
- Instagram: instagram.com/nataliebrookemusic
- Facebook: facebook.com/nataliebrookemusic
- Youtube: youtube.com/user/nataliebrookemusic
- Other: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3um59Q0sUsgdTN3VQPM6ZU?si=_MPm7104SuKZewDFl8maVg
Kara Faye Photography