Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Brooke Barrett Smith signs with Essential

Essential Records announces the upcoming debut release from newly-signed pop/rock artist Brooke Barrettsmith. The 26 year-old Chicago native has written a collection of uniquely crafted songs, melding her love of musical influences Jeremy Camp, Daughtry and Kelly Clarkson, with passionate lyrics reflecting messages of faith and encouragement. Produced by Aaron Sprinkle (Jeremy Camp, Kutless, The Almost) and Rob Hawkins (Fireflight, Jackson Waters), Brooke’s self-titled, 10-track album hits stores June 10.

“What immediately got my attention was Brooke’s powerful voice; she sings with a lot of passion,” says Blaine Barcus, VP of A&R for Provident Label Group. “That passion comes from a heart that desires to share the love of Jesus honestly with the world.”

When asked about her album Brooke Barrettsmith says, “I hope these songs inspire listeners to be bold and not ashamed of their faith in Christ because that’s a huge part of my live ministry—clearly sharing the Word of God and encouraging people to know Him better.”

Brooke’s first radio single, “Farewell” is currently impacting Christian radio and its already reaching 140,000 listeners on the CHR format in markets such as Nashville, Tenn.; San Luis Obispo, Calif.; Kalamazoo, Mich.; and Ponca City, Okla.. Plus, she’s currently playing shows with GRAMMY-nominated artist Pillar on the “For the Love of the Game” tour featuring Wavorly and Building 429.

Though only in her mid-twenties, Brooke has already dealt with her share of challenges including an early struggle with severe anxiety. As a teenager, she suffered from frequent panic attacks rendering her helpless at times. By renewing her mind in the Word of God daily and leaning on her parents for encouragement, Brooke was gradually able to overcome the attacks. This experience serves as one of the catalysts for writing her debut songs, and she speaks about it to teen and college women at regional events, including Unlimited Hope Women’s conferences. At home, Brooke is a youth group leader at her local church and studies at Moody Bible College.

In 2006, Brooke made it to the Top 40 contestants on Fox TV’s Season Five of “American Idol” (Chris Daughtry, Mandisa, Katherine McPhee). Adept at guitar and piano, as well as a prolific writer, Brooke’s musical heritage runs deep. Both her grandmothers were performers in Chicago, one a Broadway singer and the other an Italian opera singer. Her father, now a non-denominational Bible church pastor, was a professional blues drummer and played venues with legends like Buddy Guy and B.B. King.

For more on Brooke Barrettsmith, please visit and

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