Brooks Dixon

Album Nominated - Pocketful of Dreams

Biography - A five year career of performing original music for Greenville singer-songwriter Brooks Dixon has yielded 3 short EP’s, mostly a result of trips to Nashville to work with his old friend Producer/Engineer Ryan Youmans. While his band has heavily influenced the development of Dixon’s previously released songs, they had ultimately been left off the recordings, leaving a bit of a disconnect between the Brooks Dixon Band’s live energetic sound, and Brooks’ singer-songwriter, folk-laden EP’s. “It’s always a little strange” says Brooks, “We sometimes have people wanting to book our band and they say something like they just love the violin part on Roses (one of Dixon’s folk songs), or something like that. We’ve been wanting to capture our true live show for years, and it ultimately just took taking a few steps back from playing to finally get it done”.

With the release of the single “Good Intentions” by the full band in March of 2017, They finally had a sample of that live sound in a recording. “That was supposed to be the first single off an upcoming album” said Dixon, “but ultimately life got a little in the way”. Dixon planned two projects, a solo folk project titled “White Roses” a collection of songs that didn’t really fit the band; and a full length band album that captured the raw essence of their performances. “The solo album was easy, I just set aside a weekend to go to Nashville and record”.

The Band album proved a little more time consuming. Especially when shortly after recording in Nashville, Dixon’s health was deteriorating. “I was playing music all over the south east, not getting enough sleep, working a full time engineering job, and to make it all worse: eating horribly” says Dixon, “that was a real wake up call that I needed more balance in my life, and that something needed to change”. Dixon was diagnosed with Diabetes in August of 2017, and it took months of sudden lifestyle changes to reclaim a healthy lifestyle. “I had to find a new equilibrium, and that was like pushing a reset button on my career, or at least how I thought about my career. I could no longer push myself to the end, I had a very clear limit, and I suddenly found myself face to face with that limit.”

Additionally, more life changes were in store for the band; Sara Middleton, the band’s bubbly energetic female vocalist and tambourine player, became engaged to be married in the summer and got married to her now husband Rob in April of 2018, and Dixon also proposed to his wife Alyson in spring 2018 and married her in late summer 2018. “It was a crazy year (2018), just a lot of life changes, I actually moved, changed jobs, and got engaged and married all in the same year. Such a wonderful year that I’ll never forget”

The band stayed busy, playing festivals, weddings, and venues all around the southeast, but that itch to make the band album still remained. They began the process in February of 2018, but it ultimately got scraped until the band lineup finally solidified. “We’d had several bassists over the years, and we had found a consistent guy (Matt Crisp) who was really finding a groove with the songs, but he ended up moving several hours away from Greenville.” In walked Jake Watson in November of 2018 and it was off to the races. “Jake really solidified the lineup, he’s really embraced this band and his musicianship is off the charts. I’m really happy with having him in the band as a person, but his playing is just so solid. I love our band”.

Finally, after a busy spring and summer, Brooks figured out that the band needed to make time for pulling together the album. They scheduled several rehearsals to try out some new songs and work through parts, and even brought in Nathan Angelo (Greenville based singer-songwriter) to work with them on some “pre-production” of the songs. “Nathan had some great notes, he really helped up develop some of the songs a bit more, it’s so nice to have a fresh take on stuff”. After those rehearsals, they ultimately had 5 brand new songs in addition to the originals already in the repertoire, and it was time for the studio. With the help of session keys player Aaron Bowen, guitarist Jacob Johnson, Engineers Ian Guthrie and Brad Phillips at Studio 101, “Pocketful of dreams” was born.

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