In an interview, Beyond The Stage asked morgen about what inspires her musically, more about her new EP, and what is the best and worst part about being a teenager.
BTS: Who would you say were your biggest musical inspirations growing up?
morgen: Adele, Carole King, and Amy Winehouse were huge inspirations to me as a child…and, honestly, still are today.
BTS: How have they inspired your music today?
morgen: I mean Carole King’s songwriting is unbelievable, Adele’s chords and melodies are insane…and Amy is just so honest, vocally and lyrically. I love them all so much that I’ve tried my best to channel them into my music whenever I can.
BTS: Your voice is captivating…when did you first find your ability/love for singing?
morgen: Awwww you’re so sweet, thank you! I kind of always sang…I was constantly surrounded by music, so I just grew up singing.
BTS: What inspires your songwriting process?
morgen: Literally everything. I find inspiration in the most insignificant things in life…they’re what I find most interesting, so I’m pretty much always inspired.
BTS: Do you ever struggle with coming up with words to match your feelings?
morgen: Absolutely, I think writing what you’re feeling is one of the hardest things to do. Putting words to emotions can be extremely difficult because some are really hard to describe, but it keeps writing interesting.
BTS: You discuss feeling the immense loneliness that comes with being a teenager and how this EP was a “six-year” therapy session. Can you dive into this more?
morgen: Absolutely, it’s more of like a two-year therapy session, but it may as well be six years because it felt like a lifetime. Basically, what I mean by my EP being my therapist is I didn’t really have anyone to talk to about all of the teenage BS in the middle of the pandemic…besides my parents. Anyways, I had my music as a coping mechanism for discovering sexuality, identities, and who I am as a person.
BTS: Do you feel that teenagers are more lonely today than they’ve been in the past?
morgen: Probably? I mean, being in a global pandemic most likely affected our level of loneliness, but being a teen in general is very lonely. We’re figuring out who we are, which is only something we can do alone. Therefore, it’s very isolating.
BTS: What struggles do you think define life as a teen today?
morgen: I really can’t speak for the entirety of the teenage mass because I am one individual who genuinely doesn’t even fit in with my peers…but that being said, I think the pressure to have everything figured out at a young age is very daunting. It’s pretty much ingrained in us since we’re kids that senior year is the year where we figure out what we’re doing for the rest of our life or at least the next four years. Also, the idea that we have to be successful and put together by the age of 25 is ridiculous…that’s not even half of your life. It can be very stressful.
BTS: Your song “Savor” is a beautiful and achingly painful masterpiece. Can you open up more about the story behind this song and these lyrics?
morgen: Yes, I was in a situationship with a person, a very close friend of mine, and we had been on and off for quite some time, but one day they came over and left and didn’t talk to me for six months. At first I didn’t know how to take it, I just felt so taken advantage of, so I wrote “Savor”.
BTS: You mentioned your work in LA before COVID hit. How do you think COVID has impacted your work/growth as a creative artist?
morgen: Honestly, it’s made me think a lot more about who I am as an individual, so I think it helped creatively. Also, I don’t take anything social for granted anymore, so I have a pretty constant stream of inspiration.
BTS: You said that by five you were singing in your dad’s band. What was your most memorable experience (if you can remember) of your time doing that?
morgen: I remember going up on stage in this huge white dress when I was about 4 and would sing a song or two and then get off the stage and take this little yellow purse around to every table to collect tips…lil morgen was making BANK.
BTS: How do you think being in a band is different from being a solo artist?
morgen: Well, there are pros and cons to both…being in a band can be really complicated because you have the opinions of multiple human beings, however you also have a community of creatives to share your inspiration with. Being a solo artist can be very lonely and tiresome because you have to do all the work yourself, but on the contrary, you have a ton of freedom to do whatever you want. Both are dope.
BTS: Did you ever think about starting your own band?
morgen: I actually did in seventh grade…it didn’t last very long. But, I’m definitely not opposed to being in a band in the future. I think it could be really fun.
BTS: Who is an artist whose genre is totally different than yours, but you feel would be so cool to collaborate with on a track?
morgen: Bon Iver or Japanese House would be so dope.
BTS: How do you want your music to make people feel?
morgen: Like they’re not alone.
BTS: What is your desired impact on listeners?
morgen: I just want my listeners to have somebody they can relate to, somebody who’s completely honest.
BTS: How do you go about your music video process? Do you script out the storylines, as well?
morgen: Absolutely. Everything is pretty much scripted, I’m very specific that way. I’ll go through the lyrics and write out what I want on each line, and then put it into a sheet so we can see shot by shot.
BTS: What helps you mold that visual creation process?
morgen: This sounds really wordy, but listening to the song with my eyes closed and just watching what my brain interprets the song as visually is what I do.
BTS: So, it’s that time of year where we all get our Spotify Wrapped. What were your year’s top songs and artists? Did any of them surprise you?
morgen: My top artists were Bon Iver, Arlo Parks, myself (lol), PVRIS, and Kate Davis. Actually, I was surprised that I was one of my own top artists…I don’t really listen to my own music that much, or at least I thought I didn’t.
BTS: Despite all its struggles, what do you think is the best part about being an artist who is so young?
morgen: I think it’s probably having the freedom to mess around with different genres because I “have time” or whatever.
BTS: What unique perspective are you capable of giving through your music that maybe others are not?
morgen: I think I’m just honest, I don’t know. I’ve just always been my own person…sure, I’ve wanted to fit in, but at this point, I’ve kinda just accepted that I’m the way I am.
BTS: Lastly, (a quick fire round)…
1. What’s your favorite movie?
Lord of the Rings
2. Favorite ice cream flavor?
10/20 from Marianne’s Ice Creamery in Santa Cruz
3. If you could only either travel to the past or to the future, which would you pick and why?
Past for sure, knowing my future would be too scary.
At only 17, morgen has managed to cultivate a captivating voice and unique sound. While staying true to herself and ever-evolving style, we cannot wait to see what is next in store for this emerging artist!
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