Brooke Fraser

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Brooke Fraser
Fraser during the NZ Fashion Week 2010
Background information
Birth name Brooke Gabrielle Fraser
Born (1983-12-15) 15 December 1983 (age 30)
Wellington, New Zealand.
Origin Wellington, New Zealand
Genres Pop, contemporary Christian music, contemporary worship music
Occupations Singer-songwriter, musician
Instruments Vocals, piano, guitar
Years active 2002–present
Labels Sony Music, Wood + Bone
Associated acts Hillsong

Brooke Gabrielle Fraser Ligertwood, better known as Brooke Fraser (born 15 December 1983), is a New Zealand singer-songwriter and musician best known for her third studio album Flags, the most successful album of her career, with the single "Something in the Water" reaching number one on the New Zealand Singles Chart in 2010 and charting around the world. "Something in the Water" was the ninth most played song in Germany in 2011 and has been certified Gold in Germany. The album debuted at No. 1 in NZ, No. 2 in Australia, No. 6 in Germany.

Early life[edit]

Fraser is the eldest of the three children born to former All Black Bernie Fraser,[1] who was born in Lautoka, Fiji, and his wife Lynda Fraser.[2] Her father is of Fijian, Portuguese and Scottish descent.[3] She grew up in Naenae, Lower Hutt and attended Dyer Street School, Naenae Intermediate School and Naenae College.[4]

Fraser took piano lessons between the ages of seven and seventeen. She started writing songs at age twelve and taught herself the acoustic guitar at fifteen. Despite her skills as a singer she has never taken singing lessons.[4]

She performed at Parachute, an annual New Zealand music festival in 2000 – including a special guest performance in 2007.[4]

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.[5]

Musical career[edit]

In 2002, while Fraser was in Auckland, Scotty Pearson, the drummer for Elemeno P, organised a meeting with producer Matty J for her. Matty J became her manager, liaising with the major labels who had shown interest and compared their offers. Fraser had about five different labels offer her deals and chose to sign a multi-album deal with Sony Music at the age of 17.[6]

What to Do With Daylight[edit]

Fraser's first album, What to Do with Daylight, was released in New Zealand in late 2003, debuting at number one and achieved gold status in the same week. The album eventually went seven times platinum,[7] selling over 105,000 copies in New Zealand alone.[8] It remained on the album charts for sixty-six weeks.[9] All five singles from the album reached the top twenty in the New Zealand Singles Chart.[10] Her album also topped the New Zealand Top 50 Albums of 2004.[11]

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 U.K. rock artist David Bowie.[12][13] Whilst on tour with John Mayer, she met with his guitarist and keyboardist Michael Chaves who, after recording Mayer's album Heavier Things, Fraser enlisted to play on her album and future concerts.[14]


Main article: Albertine (album)

In 2005, prior to writing and preparing her follow-up album, Fraser took a trip to Africa to immerse herself in Rwanda before visiting her sponsor children in Tanzania, as she is an advocate for child sponsorship. In this trip, she was so moved that she wrote the song Albertine about a young child (named Albertine), whom she met while in Rwanda. It was later decided to make this song the album's title track.[15]

Fraser performing in Seattle, 8 December 2010

For the second album, Fraser decided to enlist a new band, primarily constructed from American musicians who'd worked with an array of notable artists, both live and recorded.[16] In 2006, Fraser and the band went into the studio in Los Angeles to record the album. Later Fraser allowed her fans to listen to the album's first single Deciphering Me via her MySpace page. The single was later released initially to radio and ultimately to CD single, and achieved number four in the New Zealand single charts.

On 4 December 2006 Albertine was released in New Zealand, achieving double platinum status less than a month after its release and has remained, to date, in the top 20 every week since. The album was released in Australia and internationally on 31 March 2007. In Australia, it charted at number twenty-nine in its first week on 9 April and has thus far achieved Gold sales status.

On 6 April 2007, Fraser performed "Deciphering Me" for the Good Friday Appeal, an annual televised fundraising event to raise money for the Royal Children's Hospital in Melbourne.

In 2008, Fraser appeared on the Dave Barnes song "Believe" from his album Me + You + the World, performing backing vocals.

Albertine was also Fraser's U.S. debut, released 27 May 2008 and entered the Billboard 200 at number ninety on 19 July 2008. Her album propelled in success with online sales after being chosen as Editor's Choice on iTunes. On 4 July 2008 Fraser supported Canadian artist/U2 collaborator Daniel Lanois at the Montreal Jazz Festival. In August she toured the southern U.S.[17] In September, she re-toured several major U.S. cities and completed the tour at the Shepherd's Bush Empire in London, UK.


Flags was recorded at East West Studios in Hollywood in the summer of 2010[18] and released by Wood & Bone Records on 12 October 2010. Fraser celebrated with sold-out tours in the U.S., Australia and New Zealand. Flags reached the No. 1 spot on the New Zealand album chart,[19] No. 3 in Australia,[20] and entered at No. 59 on the Billboard 200 in the US,[21] and climbed as high as No. 3 on the U.S iTunes album chart. "Flags" has been certified Gold in Australia and 3x Platinum in New Zealand where it was the 6th highest selling album of 2010.[22] The first single, "Something in the Water," has achieved extensive radio success across the globe, notably receiving BBC Radio 2 A-list rotation upon release.[23] The single has gone on to achieve double platinum sales in NZ where it spent 21 weeks in the 2010 singles chart.[24] The single has reached No. 2 in the Dutch airplay chart whilst residing in the top 5 singles chart for 6 consecutive weeks.[25] The single has charted in Poland and Belgium at No. 15 and No. 23 respectively,[26] as well as being certified Gold in both Germany and Italy.[26] Flags was released in July 2011 in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and debuted in the following positions: No. 6 in Germany, No. 33 in Austria & No. 24 in Switzerland. One month on from release, "Flags" remained in the German top 20 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.[27] Flags is due to be released in Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland on 7 November 2011.[26] Flags has received accolades from peers and press alike. Sara Bareilles announced to her 2 million followers on Twitter "If you don’t know her, you should. @brookefraser is a freakin gem. New album out now. Yay." and Women’s Wear Daily has called Fraser "The Kiwi Norah Jones."[28][29]

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."[30]

In support of the Flags release in Switzerland, Fraser appeared in November 2011 at the "Energy Stars for Free" event in Zurich alongside Lenny Kravitz and Snow Patrol.[31]

Brutal Romantic[edit]

Main article: Brutal Romantic

On 13 August 2014, Fraser released a "taster track" titled "Psychosocial", on SoundCloud.[32] The song marks 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" was sent to radio on 22 September 2014, and was available for digital download on 26 September 2014.[citation needed] On 1 October she announced her new album Brutal Romantic will follow in November.[33][34]

Personal life[edit]

After the success of her first album, Fraser moved to Sydney in 2004 where she began attending Hillsong Church. On 17 March 2008 she married Scott Ligertwood, in Sydney, changing her name to Brooke Ligertwood.[35] "Brooke Fraser" has remained her stage name for her activity as a Sony BMG recording/touring artist. After touring her second album Albertine for almost 4 years, Fraser returned home to Sydney. She took almost a year off from music-making. After attending the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in the US and seeing Fleet Foxes[36] set she was inspired to work on her latest album Flags.[37]

Fraser also runs a blog from her website where she comments on everything from touring, to fashion and food.[38]


Fraser has enjoyed success in her career for many years, and she has always used her position to highlight many worthy causes and charity projects, and raising large amounts of money for them in the process. In late 2010 whilst on tour in the U.S. 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.[39] Joining the likes of Justin Bieber,[40] Will Smith[41] and Adam Lambert[42] Fraser's birthday campaign was a success raising over $54,000. She has vowed to continue her work with charity: water on future projects.

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. In 2006 she, along with Petra Bagust and Tau from Spacifix, appeared in an advertisement for the World Vision 40 Hour Famine; an event which raises funds for children in third world countries. She also sponsors eleven children through World Vision[43] and makes child ways of contributing to the work of World Vision (i.e. fundraising t-shirts etc.).

She was one of many New Zealand performers to work alongside popular New Zealand comedy band Flight of the Conchords in their 2012 New Zealand Red Nose Day charity song "Feel Inside (and stuff like that)".[citation needed]


Studio albums

Awards and nominations[edit]

APRA Awards (New Zealand)
Year Recipient Award Result
2004[44] Brooke Fraser for "Better" Most Performed Work in New Zealand Won
2007[44][45][46] Brooke Fraser for "Deciphering Me" Won
APRA Silver Scroll Nominated
Brooke Fraser for "Albertine" Won
2011 Brooke Fraser and Scott Ligertwood for “Something in the Water” Most Performed Work in New Zealand Won
2013 Won
Brooke Fraser and Scott Ligertwood for “Something in the Water” Most Performed Work Overseas Won
New Zealand Music Awards
Year Recipient Award Result
2004[47] Herself People's Choice Award Nominated
What To Do With Daylight Album of the Year Nominated
Best Female Solo Artist Won
Breakthrough Artist of the Year Won
"Lifeline" Single of the Year Nominated
Songwriter of the Year Nominated
2007[48] Herself People's Choice Award Nominated
Albertine Album of the Year Nominated
Best Female Solo Artist Nominated
Highest Selling Album Won
"Deciphering Me" Single of the Year Nominated
Airplay Record of the Year Won
2009[49] Herself International Achievement Won
2011[50] Flags Album of the Year Won
Flags Best Pop Album Won
"Something in the Water" Single of the Year Won
Herself Best Female Artist Won
Herself People's Choice Award Won
GMA Dove Awards
Year Nominated work Award Result
2009 Herself Female Vocalist of the Year Nominated


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  2. ^ Monk, Felicity (6–12 March 2004). "Brooke Fraser". New Zealand Listener 192 (3330). Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  3. ^ Quinn, Keith (21 January 2010). "Quinn: Bill McLaren, goodbye to a legend". Television New Zealand. Retrieved 4 May 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c "Brooke Fraser Biography". Archived from the original on 19 July 2010. Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  5. ^ Smithies, Grant (6 August 2007). "A close encounter with Brooke Fraser". Sunday Star-Times. Archived from the original on 19 July 2010. Retrieved 19 July 2010. 
  6. ^ Hobbs, Rick (2003). "Fast Tracking Brooke Fraser". NZ Musician. Archived from the original on 20 July 2010. Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
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  12. ^ "Basics". Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
  13. ^ "Brooke Fraser". Archived from the original on 20 July 2010. Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
  14. ^ "Brooke Fraser". SteroSubversion. 9 June 2008. Archived from the original on 11 July 2010. Retrieved 20 July 2010. 
  15. ^ "Brooke Fraser". Brooke Fraser. 8 December 2010. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  16. ^ The NewsTours Page on Fraser's website indicates her band's history.
  17. ^ "Brooke Fraser puts a Kiwi note into US charts". The New Zealand Herald. 21 July 2008. Retrieved 20 August 2008. 
  18. ^ "Brooke Fraser – Flag Bearer". Flush The Fashion. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  19. ^ "RIANZ". RIANZ. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  20. ^ "ARIA Chart News for week commencing 18 October 2010". the AU review. 18 October 2010. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  21. ^ "Brooke Fraser Album & Song Chart History". Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  22. ^ "Flags – NZ albums chart 2010". RIANZ. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  23. ^ "Radio 2 – Playlist". BBC. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  24. ^ ""Something In the Water" – RIANZ". RIANZ. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  25. ^ ""Somehing in the Water" European Charts". Brooke Fraser Official Website. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  26. ^ a b c "Flags – November 2011 European Releases". Brooke Fraser Official Website. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  27. ^ "Flags – Hungary Albums Chart". mahasz. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  28. ^ "Brooke Fraser's Flags Debuts at No. 59 on the Billboard Top 200, On Tour Now". The Audio Perv. 22 October 2010. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  29. ^ "About". Brooke Fraser. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  30. ^ "CD Review, Brooke Fraser, Flags". Glide Magazine. 18 January 2011. Retrieved 25 April 2011. 
  31. ^ "Brooke Fraser – Switzerland Show Announcement". Brooke Fraser Official Website. Retrieved 28 October 2011. 
  32. ^ Yap, Timothy (14 August 2014). "Hillsong's Brooke Fraser Returns with "Psychosocial"; Hear Her New Song Here". Hallels. Retrieved 16 August 2014. 
  33. ^ "Kiwi Brooke Fraser unleashes new sound". Retrieved 30 September 2014. 
  34. ^
  35. ^ News of marriage in NZ Girl
  36. ^ "Brooke Fraser". 12 October 2010. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  37. ^ Urankar, Chris. "Brooke Fraser's island – Arts & Entertainment – Lifestyle – Nine to Five". Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  38. ^ "Bespoke". Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  39. ^ NAME. "Brooke's 27th birthday". Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  40. ^ NAME. "Justin's 17th Birthday". Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  41. ^ "Will & Jada's Birthday Contest". 30 September 2011. Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  42. ^ NAME. "Adam's 29th Birthday". Retrieved 22 October 2011. 
  43. ^ Hewitson, Michele (5 February 2011). "Michele Hewitson Interview: Brooke Fraser". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 22 September 2011. 
  44. ^ a b "Brooke Fraser". Pacific Starmap. Archived from the original on 18 July 2010. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  45. ^ New Zealand Press Association. "Fraser takes Silver Scroll with Albertine". Fairfax New Zealand. Archived from the original on 17 July 2010. Retrieved 17 July 2010. 
  46. ^ "APRA Silver Scroll Awards 2007". 17 July 2007. Archived from the original on 17 July 2010. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  47. ^ "Four dominate at 2004 music awards" (Press release). New Zealand Music Awards. 23 September 2004. 
  48. ^ Hunkin, Joanna (19 October 2007). "Mint Chicks, Hollie Smith dominate NZ Music Awards". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 17 July 2010. 
  49. ^ New Zealand Press Association (8 October 2009). "NZ Music Awards Winners". Television New Zealand. Archived from the original on 18 July 2010. Retrieved 18 July 2010. 
  50. ^ Cardy, Tom (9 September 2011). "Brooke Fraser up for five awards". The Dominion Post. Retrieved 17 September 2011. 

External links[edit]