About Brooke White
A singer/songwriter with an earthy, soulful quality to her voice and music, Brooke White established herself with '70s-informed songwriter pop before eventually branching into country music. Prior to her breakthrough as a contestant on American Idol in 2008, she cut her teeth as a singer/songwriter in the vein of Carly Simon and Carole King, two icons whose influence helped her earn a fifth-place finish on the show. With her Idol fan base on-board, she issued her second solo album, High Hopes and Heartbreaks, in 2009. White ventured into country-pop on her fifth full-length, 2019's Calico, a portmanteau for "California country."
Born in Phoenix and raised in the nearby town of Mesa, Arizona, White grew up amid the sounds of her parents' record collection, including James Taylor, Elton John, Carly Simon, and other artists from the '70s. She began singing publicly during high school, having landed the titular role in a production of Kiss Me Kate, and a brief stint in beauty school failed to keep her from pursuing a songwriting career after graduation. She issued an album entitled Songs from the Attic in 2005 while working as a nanny to make ends meet.
White auditioned for American Idol in late 2007; the show's new allowance for instrumental self-accompaniment (prohibited for the contestant in previous seasons) worked to her advantage. She played piano and guitar during her time on the show, effectively proving herself to be something more than a mere covers vocalist. Rather than partner with a traditional label at the show's conclusion, however, White opted to form her own label, June Baby Records, with help from American Idol judge Randy Jackson and manager Carl Stubner. The three then set to work on her first post-Idol album, which ultimately took the form of 2009's High Hopes and Heartbreaks.
She followed her second solo release with the EP Gemini in 2011, a six-track songwriting collaboration with Jack Matranga issued under the name Jack and White. The duo returned in 2012 with two more EPs, Winter and the covers EP Undercover. Recorded under her own name, the solo full-length Brooke White Christmas also saw release before the end of the year. In the meantime, White starred in a pair of made-for-TV movies: Change of Plans (Fox) and the music-themed Banner 4th of July (Hallmark Channel). The latter was accompanied by a soundtrack EP released on June Baby in 2013. Featuring nearly a dozen guests, among them Matranga and David Archuleta, 2014's Never Grow Up: Lullabies and Happy Songs raised funds to combat child sexual slavery. Lost, another Jack and White EP, followed in 2015.
Issued by June Baby Records in partnership with the Nevado Music label and wearing fringe and a cowboy hat on its cover, 2019's Calico saw White take on country-music stylings. ~ Andrew Leahey & Marcy Donelson
BORNJune 02, 1983