Brandi M. Carlile is an American folk rock and Americana singer-songwriter. Born in Ravensdale, Washington, she dropped out of high school to pursue a career in music, teaching herself piano and guitar. Her debut major label album, Brandi Carlile, was released to critical acclaim yet achieved limited commercial success. Carlile garnered wider recognition with her 2007 single “The Story”, from her album of the same name. The Story was awarded gold status in 2017, having sold over 500,000 copies to date. The Firewatcher’s Daughter earned her a Grammy nomination for Best Americana Album and peaked at number 9 on the Billboard 200.
Carlile has released seven albums, including The Story (2007), Give Up the Ghost (2009), and Live at Benaroya Hall with the Seattle Symphony (2011), the latter reaching number 14 on the Top Rock Albums chart. In May 2017, Carlile released Cover Stories, Brandi Carlile Celebrates 10 Years of The Story (An Album to Benefit War Child). Featuring 14 artists covering tracks from the original The Story album, including Adele, Pearl Jam, and Dolly Parton, it debuted at number 30 on the Billboard 200. Her latest album, By The Way, I Forgive You, was released in February 2018 to critical and commercial acclaim. It debut at #5 on the Billboard 200, her highest charted position to date, and also reached #1 on Billboard’s Top Rock Albums.
Carlile’s music through the years has been categorized in several genres, including pop, rock, alternative country, and folk. She said of her style, “I’ve gone through all sorts of vocal phases, from pop to blues to R&B, but no matter what I do, I just can’t get the country and western out of my voice.” Carlile has been a part of several activism campaigns and advocates for causes ranging from spreading awareness for health issues to women empowerment.