From the time he was five years old, Chad Brownlee had dreams of one day becoming a professional hockey player. Growing up in Canada, he quickly developed a love for the game and in 2003, was drafted by the Vancouver Canucks in the NHL entry draft.
It would be difficult to describe Chad without mentioning his hockey background, as it has made him who he is today. It wasn’t until later in life that he realized another passion burning deep inside him--Music. At seventeen, Chad was given his first guitar as a gift from his parents. Self taught, he quickly learned how to put strings into chords and chords into songs. Soon after, he was composing his own songs. Although he had no ambition to follow a career in music, he used it as a release from the game of hockey.
With his sights still set on the NHL, Chad moved away to attend Minnesota State University where he was offered a full ride hockey scholarship. He made sure he packed his guitar. Throughout his years at Minnesota State, Chad excelled in both academics and athletics, while his passion for music continued to grow. In his fourth year at University he was selected as team captain by his teammates; a testament to the character and leadership qualities he possesses. A gritty stay at home defensemen, Chad was as reliable off the ice as he was on.
That year, he was also nominated for the NCAA Hockey Humanitarian award for his song “The Hero I See”. It was written in memory of a young boy who lost his battle to leukemia at the tender age of nine. The song went on to raise thousands of dollars for the “Anthony Ford Foundation” which helps underprivileged kids who can’t afford to play hockey. It was Anthony’s last wish.
After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Minnesota State, Chad went on to the Vancouver Canucks training camp, where he would learn from the players he grew up idolizing. After a year of playing in the minor leagues and battling with injuries, the decision came to hang up the skates, like a hand pulling on his jersey saying, “Follow me”. It was something he had never imagined doing, but he was driven to pursue a career in music.
Chad’s hard work and dedication towards hockey has prepared him for the rigors of his future musical endeavors. Since his exit from professional hockey, Chad has teamed up with Multi Award Winning CCMA, BCCMA and SOCAN Songwriter, Guitar Player and Producer Mitch Merrett. Currently the two are putting the final touches on the debut album which features the latest single on radio ‘The Best That I Can (Superhero) a song penned by Brownlee, Merrett and Tebey Ottoh. (September 2009)
His songs are honest and real, with clearly painted metaphors. He is an artist that is all about the music and has a passion to improve and evolve as a singer/songwriter. For Chad Brownlee, this is only the beginning…
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