Welcome to the fourth part of a new regular feature on Belles and Gals, where we shine our spotlight on the rising stars of the industry coming out of Nashville – all brought to you by new team member Craig Brooks! (twitter.com/swindonforever)
The First time I saw Morgan Johnston play was on my birthday in September of 2018 in the bar of the Renaissance Hotel in Nashville as part of a writers round a friend had put on. You could definitely tell immediately how much potential this girl had.
Morgan hails from Cape Cod, Massachusetts and like a lot of people moved to Nashville to pursue her music dreams. From the age of 13 she has written songs and learned to play Guitar however has also been a competitive Equestrian most of her life, she’s definitely one of those people who can pick up absolutely anything and just be fantastic at it. As well as writing and performing music in Nashville, Morgan has also worked as a hostess and performer for Songbird Tours owned by Emmy Award winning songwriter and producer Trey Bruce. Songbird Tours drive people around Music Row showing them the sights and sounds as well as performing live music to them.
Having had the pleasure of watching Morgan play countless times since the first occasion, it’s been wonderful to see the audience numbers rapidly growing and often including many other very talented names on the Nashville scene, It’s evident how much Morgan is respected as an artist amongst her peers. As well as regularly performing at writers rounds around town she has made appearances at the legendary Listening Room Café and Whiskey Jam. Performing at Whiskey Jam for me is a particularly notable accomplishment for an artist, it’s not the typical kind of show you would play or crowd you would play to in Nashville as a singer/songwriter. People are there to drink and party hard so I think you have to take yourself out of that writers round mind-set and be able to show real stage presence and depth as an artist and Morgan really has that in abundance.
2018 was a big year for Morgan as it saw the release of her debut single ‘Good Guy’ in August which smashed through 100,000 streams on Spotify before the end of the year (113,794 at time of writing), an incredible achievement for an unsigned artist without a big marketing machine behind her. 2019 is set to be an even bigger year with her debut EP ‘When I See Red’, produced by Trey Curtis, due for release soon.
Despite all of the success coming Morgan’s way she has remained the most humble and sweetest person you will meet in Nashville, so much so in fact that I have no doubts when she is performing at the Opry and the Ryman she will still make time to play the smaller writers rounds around town.
Whether it is a huge venue or a small show in a hotel bar, Morgan will give you a passionate and flawless performance.