Brooke Gabrielle Ligertwood (née Fraser, born 15 December 1983) better known by her stage name Brooke Fraser, is a New Zealand singer and songwriter best known for her hit single "Something in the Water", released in 2010. Fraser released two studio albums What to Do with Daylight (2003) and Albertine (2006) through Columbia Records before signing a recording contract with Wood + Bone. Her third studio album, Flags was released in 2010 and it is her most successful album to date. Her most recent album, Brutal Romantic, was released in November 2014 through Vagrant Records.
Brooke Fraser in 2015
|Birth name||Brooke Gabrielle Fraser|
|Born||15 December 1983|
Wellington, New Zealand
|Origin||Wellington, New Zealand|
|Genres||Contemporary Christian music, pop|
|Occupation(s)||Singer, songwriter, record producer|
|Instruments||Vocals, piano, guitar|
|Associated acts||Hillsong Worship, Hillsong United|
Fraser became a member of the Australian Christian music group Hillsong Worship from 2005 through 2010, and rejoining the group in 2016 since she was the songwriter and lead vocalist for the Grammy winning song "What a Beautiful Name" which was credited under her married name Brooke Ligertwood. Other well-known songs written by Fraser include "Who You Say I Am" and "Awake My Soul".
Fraser is the eldest of three children born to former All Black Bernie Fraser, who was born in Lautoka, Fiji, and his wife Lynda. Her father is of Fijian, Portuguese and Scottish descent. She has two brothers: Matthew, who lives in Wellington, and Shea, who lives in Dunedin. Fraser grew up in Naenae, Lower Hutt and attended Dyer Street School, Naenae Intermediate School and Naenae College.
She began writing for the Soul Purpose magazine at age fifteen, and was later made editor in 2002. She gave up her job as editor shortly after moving to Auckland in late 2002 in order to pursue her music career.
2002–04: What to Do With DaylightEdit
Fraser's first album, What to Do with Daylight, was released in New Zealand in late 2003, debuting at No. 1 and achieved gold status in the same week. The album eventually went seven times platinum, selling over 105,000 copies in New Zealand alone. It remained on the album charts for sixty-six weeks. All five singles from the album reached the top twenty in the New Zealand Singles Chart. Her album also topped the New Zealand Top 50 Albums for all of 2004. The album also achieved gold status in Australia.
Following the release of What to Do with Daylight, Fraser toured Australia and New Zealand with American artist John Mayer and then toured New Zealand with veteran English rock artist David Bowie.
In 2005, prior to writing and preparing her follow-up album, Fraser took a trip to Rwanda before visiting her World Vision sponsor children in Tanzania. Fraser wrote the song Albertine about a young genocide victim (named Albertine), whom she met while in Rwanda. This song became her second album's title track.
For this album, Fraser decided to enlist a new band of American session musicians who'd worked with an array of notable artists, both live and recorded. In 2006, Fraser and the band went into the studio in Los Angeles to record the album with producer Marshall Altman. The first single Deciphering Me reached No. 4 in the New Zealand single charts in 2006.
On 4 December 2006, the album, Albertine, was released in New Zealand, achieving double platinum status less than a month after its release. The album was released in Australia and internationally on 31 March 2007. In Australia, it charted at No. 29 in its first week on 9 April and has achieved Gold sales status.
Albertine was also Fraser's US debut, released on 27 May 2008. It entered the Billboard 200 at No. 90 on 19 July 2008. The album was propelled by online sales after being chosen as Editor's Choice on iTunes. In 2008 Fraser undertook a major world tour culminating the Montreal Jazz Festival and the Sheppard's Bush Empire in London, UK. Albertine (the single) won the prestigious APRA Silver Scroll for Song of the Year in 2007.
Flags was recorded at East West Studios in Hollywood in the summer of 2010 and released on 12 October 2010, in New Zealand, Australia and North America. Fraser celebrated with sold-out tours in all territories. Flags reached the No. 1 on the New Zealand album chart, No. 3 in Australia. and entered at No. 59 on the Billboard 200 in the US, Flags has been certified Gold in Australia and 3x Platinum in New Zealand, where it was also the 6th highest selling album of 2010. The first single, Something in the Water, has achieved extensive radio success across the globe, notably receiving BBC Radio 2 A-list rotation in the top 10 in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Finland and Belgium and is a gold single in Germany and Italy. The single achieved double platinum sales in NZ where it spent 21 weeks in the 2010 singles chart. Flags was released in July 2011 in Europe and debuted in the album charts at No. 6 in Germany, No. 33 in Austria and No. 24 in Switzerland. One month on from release, Flags remained in the German top twenty at No. 13 and Something in the Water on the singles charts at No. 8. Flags was released in October 2011 in Hungary, reaching No. 15 on the national album chart by second week of release. Flags was later released in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland on 7 November 2011.
In its review of Flags, Glide Magazine said: "Brooke Fraser's third release, Flags, is a wonder. From the stunning lyrical imagery throughout to the impressive guest vocalists who join her (Cary Brothers, Jon Foreman and Aqualung among them), from Fraser's ethereal and breathy performances to the wide-ranging soundscapes, this record is drenched in beauty and stands as one of the more remarkable achievements of 2010."
2013–2016: Brutal Romantic, A Sides and B SidesEdit
After the release of Flags, Fraser signed a recording contract with Vagrant Records and started recording her fourth studio album. On 13 August 2014, Fraser released a "taster track" titled "Psychosocial" on SoundCloud. The song marked a radical shift in musical direction for Fraser, as she moves from more acoustic and singer-songwriter based tunes to more electronic sounds. Her new single "Kings and Queens" went to radio on 22 September 2014, and was available for digital download on 26 September 2014. On 1 October she announced her fourth studio album Brutal Romantic would follow in November. The album was released in Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia on 14 November 2014 and in North America on 17 November 2014. The album was produced by Fraser and David Kosten, except the track "Magical Machine" which was produced by Fraser, Kosten and Dan Wilson. In September 2015, Fraser performed a song titled "Team, Ball, Player, Thing" as a part of a charity supergroup #KiwisCureBatten. It was an official supporters' song of the All Blacks in the 2015 Rugby World Cup. It was also in aid of research into Batten disease via the New Zealand charity Cure Kids. It was released as a single on 11 September 2015. The day after it was released, the single debuted at No. 6 on the New Zealand Top 40 chart.
In 2016, she released "Therapy", off her compilation album, A Sides, which was released 25 November 2016. This was followed by the release of a second compilation album, B Sides, on 16 November 2018.[non-primary source needed]
2006–2010; 2016–present: Hillsong WorshipEdit
Already part of Hillsong Church since 2005, Fraser joined the Australia church's worship band—Hillsong Worship— where she participates under her married name: Brooke Ligertwood. The first album she was included on was 2006's Mighty to Save when she co-wrote "None But Jesus" from 2006's United We Stand. Her last live album with the band was 2010's A Beautiful Exchange, after which Fraser left Hillsong Worship. The 2016 live album Let There Be Light marked Fraser's return and her first live recording with Hillsong Worship since her departure in 2010. She co-wrote and sang lead vocals on the song "What a Beautiful Name" for the 2016 live album. At the 2018 Grammy Awards, the group won the Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song award for "What a Beautiful Name". Billboard ranked the song as the top Christian Song of 2017 and third of the 2010s decade.
After the success of her first album, Fraser moved to Sydney in 2004. On 17 March 2008 she married Scott Ligertwood, in Sydney. "Brooke Fraser" has remained her stage name for her solo career. In March 2015, Fraser announced she was pregnant with their first child. A daughter was born on 18 September 2015. Fraser currently lives in Los Angeles, where she is occasionally on the Sunday worship team at the Hillsong Church Los Angeles campus. Another daughter was born on 10 July 2017.
In late 2010 whilst on tour in the US promoting her third album Flags, Fraser, in conjunction with charity: water ran a birthday campaign asking her fans to donate $27 in honour of her 27th birthday. The goal was to raise $50,000 to build clean water wells in Ethiopia. Joining the likes of Justin Bieber, Will Smith and Adam Lambert
Fraser has worked with World Vision as an Artist Associate since 2001. She has visited Cambodia and Tanzania with World Vision, the Philippines with Opportunity International and independently travelled to Rwanda in June 2005, in June 2006 as part of charity event "Hope Rwanda", and in May 2007 when she filmed the music video for the song "Albertine" off her second studio album of the same name. Fraser was one of many New Zealand performers to work alongside New Zealand comedy band Flight of the Conchords in their 2012 New Zealand Red Nose Day charity song "Feel Inside (And Stuff Like That)".
Awards and nominationsEdit
|2018||"What a Beautiful Name"||Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song||Won|
GMA Dove AwardsEdit
|2009||Female Vocalist of the Year||Nominated|
Vodafone Pacific Music AwardsEdit
|2013||"Something in the Water"||New Zealand On Air Radio Airplay||Nominated|
|2015||"Kings & Queens"||New Zealand On Air Radio Airplay||Won|
|2018||"Therapy"||New Zealand On Air Radio Airplay||Won|
APRA Awards (New Zealand)Edit
|Year||Nominee / work||Award||Result|
|2004||"Better"||Most Performed Work in New Zealand||Won|
|APRA Silver Scroll||Nominated|
|2011||"Something in the Water" (shared with Scott Ligertwood)||Most Performed Work in New Zealand||Won|
|Most Performed Work Overseas||Won|
New Zealand Music AwardsEdit
|2004||People's Choice Award||Nominated|
|Album of the Year (What to Do with Daylight)||Nominated|
|Best Female Solo Artist||Won|
|Breakthrough Artist of the Year||Won|
|Single of the Year ("Lifeline")||Nominated|
|Songwriter of the Year||Nominated|
|People's Choice Award||Nominated|
|Album of the Year (Albertine)||Nominated|
|Best Female Solo Artist||Nominated|
|Highest Selling Album (Albertine)||Won|
|Single of the Year ("Deciphering Me")||Nominated|
|Airplay Record of the Year ("Deciphering Me")||Won|
|2009||International Achievement Award||Won|
|2011||Album of the Year (Flags)||Nominated|
|Best Pop Album (Flags)||Won|
|Best Female Solo Artist||Nominated|
|Single of the Year ("Something in the Water")||Won|
|People's Choice Award||Won|
|2015||Best Female Solo Artist (Brutal Romantic)||Nominated|
|2018||International Achievement Award (Grammy for "What a Beautiful Name")||Won|
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... She even went to her first Parramatta Eels rugby league game. Fraser's younger brothers remain in New Zealand (Matt in Wellington; Shea in Dunedin) ...
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Despite the success of What a Beautiful Name, from the album Let There Be Light, she still plans to perform under the name Brooke Fraser. "When I'm singing as Brooke Fraser, it can be more about me; when I am with Hillsong, I am simply part of the church and it's not about me," she said.
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