Oct 052009

This is a re-post from an article I wrote on Examiner.com two weeks ago. Saw this girl play at the D-Note again tonight. Definitely a standout. OOMPH Scale: 8.5 –J

Open stage nights at the local club are typically the place for the more unpolished local talent to show their stuff–the more amateur types who sing and play for fun but don’t really have aspirations of music careers. However, every so often, open stage nights also good places to find the undiscovered talent, the “diamond in the rough.”

Monday night at the D-Note in Olde Town Arvada, one of those diamonds showed up.

After a string of musicians ranging from the okay to the mediocre, 21-year-old singer/songwriter Brooke Shellberg (who goes by “Brookefield H.” onstage) set up her keyboard, took the stage, began to play and sing–and captured and commanded our attention throughout her four-song set. With vocalizations reminiscent of Norah Jones and a jazzy quirky style, she was the surprise of the evening.

It wasn’t that the performance was perfect; “diamond in the rough” is a trite expression, but a fitting description in this case. By her own admission, Brookefield H. is just getting started playing out solo, and it takes time and experience to own the stage and get comfortable with it. But when the awkward moments are erased by nearly flawless vocals and creative original songs, you know that all that’s needed is a little artist development and a bit of experience to make the diamond shine.

Brookefield H. is new to Denver. She has no CDs to sell, no demo, no press kit–just a great voice, a current, memorable style, and a lot of promise. She is working on getting more dates in local venues in the days to come; meanwhile, if you show up at D-Note on Monday nights, you’re likely to see her take the stage from time to time. If you do, you’re in for a treat. Brookefield H. is just beginning the journey, but she is one to watch.

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