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I Helped Make Brandi Carlile Famous — I Really Did!

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Brandi Carlile is a popular recording artist who’s had a couple hits (“The Story” has probably been her biggest) and will play with The Dave Matthews Band Caravan when they perform at The Gorge Amphitheater in August. Not many people know I had a small part in helping her get famous. No, really.

For a short time before she was successful I was kind of her manager. more like a friend helping her band get gigs in the tri-cities

If you read her Wikipedia page it’s silent from 1997-2007. Back in the 1990s she was in my friend’s band called, “The Shed” — so named because they practiced in a shed!

In 1998 or so I invited my friend down from Seattle to play at my family’s reunion. Brandi played keyboard and did backup vocals. I started paying attention to her and encouraged my friend to make her lead singer, which he later did. Their first professional gig was playing at Oasis Water Park. I worked at Costco at the time and was putting together the employee appreciation party. We paid them $100.

I introduced them to my friend at KORD Paul Drake. He liked them as much as I did and started getting them gigs around town.

When they’d play Tri-Cities the band would sleep at my house. At the time Brandi had a tom-boy haircut, which is funny to me now because she looks gorgeous and glamorous.

They were at my house so much I actually still have some of the bands personal belongings.

They started getting more gigs in Seattle and wanted my help. I was going through a divorce, had small children and just couldn’t commute. I lined up some professionals in Seattle to take a hard look at them and and eventually her singing career dreams were starting to happen.

After the band broke up and she was promoting her solo career I got a call from my cousin one day. He’s a kind of talent scout for Sony Records and he asked, “What can you tell me about Brandi Carlile?” Next thing I know she’s got a deal with Sony Records and she’s done very well for herself.

Whenever I text her I don’t hear back, but I’d love to give the personal belongings back.

Go check her out at The Gorge this summer!

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