This week we are continuing our women artist series with a beautiful woman I’ve known my whole life.
If you missed last weeks post, you can click here to read about painter Heather Anderson.
McKenna Morris is a singer songwriter from Arizona. She released her latest EP, His Light in January.
I have video footage of her hogging the piano, and memories of choreographing dances in the living room with her and my other cousins (here’s looking at you Carlie and Shae), but I think the special bond we share was serving in Russia together, not in the same part of the country, but at the same time.
She has been writing music as long as I can remember, so I was excited to ask her a few questions and share her work with you.
Here’s what she had to say:
What is your medium of choice?
Piano, guitar, and vocals.
How would you describe your artwork?
I would say that the majority of my music falls into the indie pop genre.
What originally got you interested in this type of art?
I grew up watching my mother play music she had written herself. I think this is what may have sparked my initial interest.
Could you share a story or experience you’ve had because of your art?
The greatest experiences I have had because of my art have all sprung from witnessing the incredible influence for good that music can have in the lives of others.
Over the past 10 years I have been given special opportunities to write songs for specific gatherings and groups of people.
One year, I was asked to write a song for a group of a few hundred teenage girls about having high standards, aiming high in their spiritual and temporal goals, and remembering their worth. The product of this request was a song entitled “Aim High.”
At the conclusion of the weeklong camp, I was invited to attend the devotional given the last night and listen to all of the young women sing my song together. It is these types of moments that have truly touched my heart and inspired me to keep writing.
What does your art mean to you? Why do you do it?
I write for two reasons; to inspire people, and to make sense of the world around me.
Songs are almost like puzzles for me.
When all the pieces of a puzzle are finally assembled in their proper places, you are left with a clear picture of what you created.
In the case of a song, after you have finally completed the last line, solidified the progression of the song, and every melody is just right, you are left with a clearer understanding of what you are feeling and what is really important to you.
It’s like writing helps me understand myself better and that is what I hope it will do for others. But rather than hoping everyone will hear the same message from my songs, I hope that they will hear the message that is just for them and satisfies their needs.
What piece of yours is your favorite and why?
My current favorite is probably my newest single entitled, “Forever”.
This song is about being at a crossroads and deciding where you truly stand in the end. It is about choosing what to let go and what to hold onto, now and forever.
Any favorite resources (products, tools, websites, books, etc)?
All I really use is my phone voice recorder and my guitar when I start a project. It’s all pretty simple!
What do you think being a woman brings to your art?
I think being a woman brings me a greater ability to express the common doubts and fears we experience as women through lyrics.
But at the same time, I think that most of our deepest doubts and fears are shared by all, therefore I don’t write with the intention of connecting with only women or only men.
What does being an artist add to your life?
It adds joy, creativity, connection. I wouldn’t be myself without it.
What does a typical day look like for you?
I am currently a student at BYU so my typical day involves a lot of studying, but I always make time for more writing as it is also a fantastic stress reliever!
You can find more from McKenna Morris at her website here.