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Songs from the Attic

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Album Review

Like many American Idol contestants, Brooke White didn't arrive at the big stage without some musical past. Taylor Hicks had many independent recordings to his credit before he auditioned for the show and, most famously, White's competitor Carly Smithson was once a major-label recording artist called Carly Hennessy, so the discovery that Brooke released an independent album called Songs from the Attic is not earth-shattering. Nor is it really earth-shattering that the album shares a title with Billy Joel's 1981 live LP, the record where he revisited gems from his '70s singer/songwriter albums, as Brooke revealed herself on Idol to be a disciple of '70s singer/songwriters. Truth be told, despite the piano flourish that opens "Free" — a phrase that wouldn't have seemed out of place on Turnstiles or The Stranger — Brooke doesn't have much in common with Billy; she's closer to Carole King and Carly Simon territory here, just as she is on American Idol. The difference is, through its reliance on covers and occasional stripped-down solo showcases, the show emphasizes the classicist elements of her sounds while the production on Songs from the Attic goes out of its way to have White sound relatively modern, moving her up to at least the late '90s with its meticulous polish. While that doesn't necessarily sound contemporary — especially when compared to similar efforts by 2008 pop singer/songwriters like Sara Bareilles and Marié Digby, which both boast hipper sounds than this, a nice byproduct of their major-label status — the album nevertheless does suggest that White could play in the big leagues, as her voice is warm and sweet on record and, better still, she pens a few winning pop tunes with "Free," the loping "Come to My Rescue," "The Way Love Used to Be" and "Let It Go," her best ballad here. Strangely, the songs that really fall flat are her covers of Aerosmith's "Dream On" and Coldplay's "Yellow," which are slick, flattened, and forced, awkward in a way she never is on Idol. But these are the exceptions to the rule on Songs from the Attic — the rest of the album is good mainstream singer/songwriter pop, good enough to suggest that whatever major-label boost she may receive in the wake of American Idol will help her fulfill the promise of this charming small-scale debut.

Customer Reviews

Love Brooke's voice

What a great cd, I love her music and her amazing voice. I hope she makes more cds. I will be a fans for life. My favorite songs our - Free, Come to my rescue, Change, Yellow. All of songs our good.

I thought I'd have to wait forever!

This is fantastic! I love this album. I will buy everything this girl does. Brook White should still be in the competition, but I know she will have an amazing career.

I love Brooke White!

Brooke White is the best singer ever. She has some serious talent. Did you see her on American Idol? She played guitar and piano and at the same time sings wonderfully. I can not believe she was voted off. I am no longer watching that show for the rest of the season, I mean America obviously has bad taste. Keep doing what you are doing. Canadians love you Brooke, and this Canadian especially does!!!! By the way today Brookes album was on number 47 for popular albums. Hedley, Ashlee Simpson, and bunch of others were behind hers. I hope her album gets all the way to the top ten. I really hope she makes another album!


Born: June 02, 1983 in Phoenix, AZ

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Before she appeared in the seventh season of American Idol, Brooke White cut her teeth as a small-time singer/songwriter in the vein of Carly Simon and Carole King, two icons whose influence helped her earn a fifth place finish in the Idol competition. Born in Phoenix and raised in the nearby town of Mesa, AZ, White grew up amidst the sounds of her parents' record collection, including James Taylor, Elton John, Carly Simon, and other artists from the 1970s. She began singing publicly during high...
Full bio

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Songs from the Attic, Brooke White
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