Morrison finds the strength and freedom to overcome the feelings of fear and loneliness she had battled

Photography By Sean Pozin                                                                         


Morrison’s music career began at a very young age while growing up in Massachusetts. After singing in high school choirs and musicals and ranking at the top of her high school All-State competitions, she pursued a music degree from University of MA Amherst. Studying opera, she discovered she excelled at musical theater having nabbed the lead in the musical, Cinderella. For her senior year, she moved to New York City to attend Hunter College and audition for Broadway musicals. Eventually, she began singing in rock/punk bands throughout the City where she found “her calling.” 

She moved to Miami in 2009 where she formed her first official band, Dorothy’s Surrender, for which she wrote all the songs influenced by her biggest inspirations: Hole, Garbage, Nine Inch Nails and Audioslave. Her second band, Revlover, formed in 2016, and had more of a folk, inspirational rock sound. Over the past year, Megan has turned her focus onto her solo music career. As a recovering alcoholic, Megan redirected a lot of her emotions and life experiences into her songwriting. She wrote her first single, “Heart on Fire”, with the positive message that you can find power in something that once caused you pain and knocked you down. The important part is making a positive change in your life to overcome it. MORRISON has experienced both a troublesome and lovely life.

In addition to her talents as a musician, Megan has honed her skills as a professional fire dancer. Her “Heart on Fire” music video, which premiered on Live in Limbo on December 10th, showcases the artist performing with fire. Megan has made appearances fire dancing in music videos with Pitbull, Elvis Crespo, and Fuego Fireboy as well as on stage with Jessie J at the New Now Next Awards in Miami. n March 29th, Morrison unleashed her second single, “9 Lives”, this introspective track gives a glimpse of the artist’s troubled past and inner turmoil that she triumphantly overcomes in the end. The accompanying music video premiered on Pure Grain Audio on June 3rd. Both singles are from Megan’s debut solo album, Appetite for Freedom, set to blast out late 2019. In the coming year, Megan is working on bringing both her singing and fire dancing into one fiery show! In this exclusive interview with Lifoti Magazine, Morrison talks about dreaming big.

What drew you to the singing and fire dancing? And what came first: singing or dancing?? Please explain your creative process for working on both singing and fire dancing? 
Something in my soul led me to start singing and dancing at a very young age. The fire dancing came much later in my life. I started writing songs and dancing on my own when I was very little. Expressing myself in that way made me feel so free and liberated. I would sit for hours at the piano dreaming up soundtracks for my own personal movie. It was like my life was a musical and I was singing and dancing my way through it. Later on I started taking voice lessons and dance classes. When I really got serious I decided to attend college for music. I was studying classical music though. Little did I know I would end up being a rock singer. You can still hear some of my classical training in my singing, as much as I’ve tried to cover it up over the years. I started fire dancing about eleven years ago. My husband (boyfriend at the time) is actually the one who got me into it. I saw him doing it and I knew it was something that I needed to learn. 

As I got better I started getting hired to dance in other artist’s music videos and on stage with them. Since I live in Miami it was usually for Latin music and reggaeton. I was in a music video with Pitbull and Elvis Crespo and I even got to dance on stage with Jessie J. As cool as all of that was, it wasn’t exactly what I wanted to be doing. I wanted to dance for myself. So I decided to incorporate my fire with my own music. In my last two videos “9 Lives” and “Heart on Fire” I finally got a chance to do that. I have also been putting together a live show where I sing and dance with fire at the same time. I’ve never been able to just sit down and write a song. It’s a skill I’ve been trying to work on. For me, I really have to feel it. Lyrics and melodies come to me at different times and usually inconvenient ones, like when I’m driving or in a store. Thank god for voice memos. Once I have an idea I usually sit down at the piano or with my guitar and hash out a rough version. I’m a very visual person, so music video ideas come to me almost instantly as I’m writing a song. I have a video in mind for every song that I write and usually it includes my fire dancing! 

Why you have decided to go for the solo music career? Have you made an impact on your group in the past? 
I decided to become a “solo artist” because I was tired of starting bands and having them fall through. Over the past four years I have started a new leg of my life where I am confident about who I am as a person and an artist. I decided to go by my real last name, Morrison, and stick with that. No more changing band names and identities. This is me and you can take it or leave it. I do have a great band that backs me up right now. They are a part of the Morrison outfit and I hope they stick around for a while. The songs I’m writing now are about my life, my experiences and hardships. I am putting it all out there and not hiding under a band name anymore. I am Morrison. 

You’ve been pretty open in your music about emerging from some dark moments in your past. What did that look like? Was there ever a point you thought you might not make it out of that darkness? Can you describe what that moment was like for you? 
I have seen some pretty rough times over the years. I battled alcohol and drug addiction for the majority of my adult life. It had gotten so bad with the alcohol that I came to a breaking point about four years ago. I was mentally and spiritually broken and couldn’t go on like that any longer, but I didn’t want to die. I knew I needed to change or that would be the end result. My dad died from liver cirrhosis due to alcoholism nine years ago and I was headed down the same path. My liver was failing and I was in and out of hospitals and I still couldn’t stop drinking. That’s when I decided to get help. With the support of my family I checked into a rehab center and started a new life. It’s really simple things that you learn in recovery, but you gain new life tools that you’ve never applied before. Once I learned how to be honest with myself I was able to start appreciating who I was as a person. I was always trying to fit in this box before, trying to be a perfect person. I put so much pressure on myself and it ultimately led to my downfall. Right before I got sober there were times when I thought I might not make it. I couldn’t imagine a life without alcohol but I knew if I kept drinking I wouldn’t make it out alive. I wouldn’t have been able to get sober without the help of others and the rehab center. Trying to do it on your own is something I don’t recommend to anyone who is struggling. 

Dealing with addiction was a very painful process, but it’s also the best thing that ever happened to me. It lead to a road of self discovery and I wouldn’t trade that in for anything. I wouldn’t be who I am today, writing the songs that I’m writing if none of this had ever happened. It’s opened my eyes and started a whole new chapter for me. It’s almost like I got to start life over again. I’ve been able to live numerous lives in one. That’s where my song “9 Lives” blossomed from. 

Do you think you could get any better as a musician or a dancer ? And if so, how would you achieve that? 
There is always room for improvement and growth in our lives. Especially for me with my music. Every day is a learning process. I’m constantly growing as a songwriter and performer. I just keep practicing and performing as much as I can. The more you do it the better you get. One thing that’s still really hard for me is talking to my audience during a show. When I’m singing I feel free and confident, but when I go to say something in between songs I clam up and usually sound really cheesy. I plan things to say ahead of time, but once I get on stage all I can usually get out is “How’s everyone doing tonight?.” I think it’s because I feel really vulnerable when it’s just me, talking to everyone. I don’t have my music to hide behind. I’m constantly working on getting past this fear.

Who are the artists and what are the definitive albums that have most profoundly constructed your music DNA? 
Muse has had the biggest influence on my music over the years. The way Matt Bellamy sings and his lyrics really make me dig down deep. The first time I heard one of their songs I was enchanted and I have been ever since. Ab solution was the album that really did me in. Songs like “Time is Running Out”, “Hysteria” and “Sing for Absolution” made me feel a way I had never felt before. I wanted to cry, laugh, break things, and jump on stage and rock out all at the same time. It was this crazy mix of emotions and I knew I wanted to make music that had the same effect on people. Some other artists that really influenced me were Led Zeppelin, Tom Petty, Aretha Franklin, Stevie Wonder, Nine Inch Nails, Soundgarden, Radiohead, Rage Against the Machine, PJ Harvey, Alanis Morissette, Pixies, The Verve, the list goes on. I had Tom Petty’s Full Moon Fever memorized by the time I was ten. When I started writing music I took what I liked from different genres and pieced it all together with my interpretation. I love all the heavy electro guitars from Muse. I love Tom Petty for his story telling abilities. I love the driving melodies from Richard Ashcroft. I take a little inspiration from all these artists in the music I’m writing now.

Do you like to start personal relationships with your listeners ? What are your fondest musical memories? 
I try to be as honest and open as I can with my listeners. I want them to feel like I am approachable and just a normal person like them. That’s why I’m so open about my life and the struggles I’ve gone through. I want to be able to help and inspire people with my music. I want to lift them up with some of my songs and when they are having a bad day I want them to be able to relate. I try to be as present as I can on social media. I almost always respond to messages and comments. At my shows I make sure to take time after and talk to everyone that came. It’s important to connect with your audience. Someone once told me that they were going through a really rough time and one of my songs helped them get through it. This meant everything to me. This is why I’m making music.

“Appetite for Freedom”, set to blast out in Fall 2019. What’s the background of the album? If you had to choose three songs as the biggest highlights off the album, which ones would they be and why? 
This album is a collection of songs I have written about the new life I’m living, how I got here, and the demons I had to battle along the way. I’m telling a story with this album. A story of redemption and rebirth. Some of the songs are dark, because that’s a part of my story. Other songs are triumphant and powerful. It’s a true story of the ups and downs of life. “9 Lives” is the first single I released off the album and it’s one of my favorites. I had a lot of fun making the music video for that one. My title track “Appetite for Freedom” is a big one for me. It starts the album off just as I started my new life. I am here, this is me, and this is what I had to do to get here. “The Devil Said Roam” is another one of my favorites. This track has more of a bluesy sound, still with the hard hitting guitars. The title pretty much explains what it’s about. I tried to sell my soul to the devil but he told me to turn around. It wasn’t my time. I’m already working on plans for the music video for this one, it’s going to be killer. I’m putting it all out there and pouring my heart and soul into this album. That’s why I’ve been taking my time with it. I can’t wait to share it with the world!

Though she was featured in recently released Lifoti's September 2019 issue 09, you can check it from below link's for your country:

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