Ever since she could form the words, Brooke Fair ’23 has said that she wants to be a singer when she grows up. Over the years, her dream has shifted from becoming a pop star to applying her talents as a songwriter, and she has worked diligently to launch her career in music. She has been writing song lyrics since she was 8 years old. Ten years later, she has written more than 100 songs in total, and she said that about half of them are performance-ready.
“I was getting tired of singing other people’s songs, or I’d want to sing a song that sounded a certain way but didn’t exist yet. I started writing, and from the moment I wrote my first song with an instrument, I never stopped,” Brooke said. “Music is singlehandedly the thing that has taught me the most about myself, the world, and life. It’s the lens that I look at the world through.”
Brooke plays soprano ukulele, baritone ukulele, and guitar. She would describe her current style as “Americana, pop, blues, funk, and soul combined,” and cites her biggest current influences as KIRBY, Hozier, and Lizzy McAlpine. She performs regularly at local venues, including Growlers, B-SIDE Memphis, Lafayette’s Music Room, and the Germantown Performing Arts Center. Hutchison teachers and fellow students have attended her gigs, and she is grateful for their support.
Brooke released her first full album in May 2022, “The Things We Were,”
and a six-song EP, “All Queens Wear Crowns,”
in November 2018. She has earned several remarkable accolades for her work: a Viddy Award
for her music video for “Suck It Up,” an Outstanding Achievement in Songwriting Award from the Great American Song Contest
, and the Songwriter of the Year title from the Memphis Songwriters Association in 2019, an award that had never been given to a performer that young before.
“As incredible as it is to receive recognition by my peers and superiors, the real blessing is watching my music impact people,” Brooke said on her website.
Brooke said she has developed her writing style in a way that represents herself, yet is ever-growing and changing.
In addition to being a talented musician, she is a dedicated student. During the time she was releasing her first album last year, she was taking five AP classes. She has since been recognized as an AP Scholar with Distinction
and a National Merit Commended Student.
“At Hutchison, I have always had a new way to challenge myself intellectually, which I appreciate because I get bored easily,” she said.
The 15-year student even incorporated various concepts and topics discussed in her classes into her music, specifically those from Heritage of Western Civilization and Culture, Women’s History, and AP Psychology.
She said Hutchison taught her how to connect with different types of people, which is important in songwriting. In particular, she is thankful for Hutchison’s civil discourse seminars. “Learning how to engage in civil discourse helped me become more educated and able to have productive conversations about potentially emotionally-charged topics with others,” she said. If music and academics weren't enough, she is a member of the Hutchison Trap Team, Vocal Point, and the Society of Women Engineers Next Club and competes with the Destination Imagination team.
Brooke said Hutchison helped her grow into the person that she is supposed to be. She has enjoyed her classes and the community, and she is looking forward to her next chapter: attending Belmont University. She plans to study music business with a focus on recording and production. One of her biggest career dreams is to write at least one song that has an impact on the world; she said timeless songs like “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” and “Yesterday” are great examples. For now, her goal is to hone her skills.
“I eventually want to be as versatile as I can be, because as a songwriter who writes for other people, you want to be able to cater to as many different artists as you can. I want to get proficient in things I’m not comfortable in,” Brooke said. “I want to make a difference with the music I write.”