Maybe were going soft at Flush the Fashion, first it was Hafdis Huld and now we’ve got New Zealand songwriter Brooke Fraser. Both are excellent female songwriters not afraid to write a pop song if the situation demands.
Recorded at East West Studios in Hollywood, Brookes latest record ‘Flags’ is a real gem, (more Cheryl Crow though, than Cheryl Cole) and carries on from where 2006’s excellent ‘Albertine’ began. After last years sell-out at the Scala, Brooke is visiting London again to play what should be a brilliant gig at the Union Chapel. The beautiful surroundings will be a perfect setting for her dreamy pop melodies. If you are thinking of going, get a ticket now.
While still only 26, Brooke is a million miles from your average rock star, using her position to highlight many worthy causes and charity projects, and raising large amounts of money for them in the process, something we think should be applauded.
We caught up with her for a quick chat….
Where does the title ‘Flags’ come from?
I wrote the record in some rather remote places and would pass by the ruins of old dwellings in the middle of nowhere. I would imagine the people who lived there once, what their lives and experiences had been and in my mind they looked like Flags.
What is your favourite song on the new record?
I love playing “Something in the Water” live and whipping people into a bit of a frenzy… and on the other end of the spectrum I really enjoy playing “Flags” and taking a ‘moment’.
(Be warned this song is very catchy, if you are not ready to like it, don’t listen!)
Do you get on well with your band?
They’re my bros. For sure.
Who has the smelliest feet on the tour bus?
There’s no nastiness in that department, I’m relieved to say. All of our tour party are extraordinarily clean people.
Who is on your iPod / Stereo at the moment?
Dan Auerbach, James Vincent McMorrow, the Civil Wars… I’m chomping at the bit for the new Fleet Foxes record to come out… that will be my next purchase.
Are you looking forward to visiting London again?
I can’t wait! London is one of my favourite cities on the planet.
Which charities are you currently involved with?
I continue to be involved with World Vision NZ & Australia in terms of child sponsorship and more recently I have locked in with an incredible organization called Charity Water.
During my album launch tour of NZ/USA/Canada last November we raised $50,000 to build clean water wells with Charity Water. I will be heading to Ethiopia this October to oversee the drilling of the wells (more info www.charitywater.org).
Do you know anyone who was affected by the devastation in New Zealand?
Yes. New Zealand is a very small country. We were on tour when the earthquake occurred and felt it from where we were a few hours north of Christchurch. It was a difficult few days trying to figure out how to play shows when for a bit there it felt a bit trivial in light of what was happening.
But I really feel we were able to serve our community with the music we played, and provide a few hours of distraction and respite, if not hope and healing. It certainly added a new dynamic to the concerts we were playing – there was a palpable feeling of solidarity and hope. It was really something.
We Kiwis have been very moved by all the overseas help that has been sent, including that of our Commonwealth cousins. It means a lot to us to know that although we are a small country at the bottom of the world, we haven’t been forgotten.