GRAMMY-winning Country star Maren Morris joined us for an exclusive RADIO.COM LIVE, hosted by Katie Neal to let us in on what quality (and quarantine) time has been like at home with her new bundle of joy, and, of course, what she's been working on as far as new projects.
Maren and her husband, fellow artist Ryan Hurd, welcomed their first child, son Hayes Andrew Hurd, at the end of March. Coming to us from the basement of her home in Nashville, Maren tells us everyone is doing well during these uncertain times, and says she’s come to welcome the pause. “We’re just enjoying this time at home,” Maren says of the family. “You know, we’ll probably never have another year like this, so we’re taking it as a positive.”
Prior to the rise of the pandemic, Maren was making big plans to take the whole clan on the road with her in support of her latest record, but all of that has been put on hold along with the rest of her fellow artists. “I was building out my bus to have a crib and all the baby stuff on it,” she admits. “Ryan was going to be opening for me on the road for a handful of shows, and then he was going to be touring elsewhere on the other dates. I think he’s probably more fortunate than me because those were going to be really tough days for him to be away from his baby."
“So now we have all this time back and it’s kind of nice for the first year of Hayes’ life to have so much focus and time at home with him.”
That time at home has to be passed somehow, it can’t all be diaper practice. Maren says she’s finished watching the entire Curb Your Enthusiasm series, they’ve taken trips to see family, and Ryan has been cooking up a storm. “We’ve also just been doing absolutely nothing, which has been nice.”
Working on new music, obviously, is a part of her at-home time, although she admits she’s slowly getting back into the writing process. “It’s been good… it’s been a lot of good time to kind of find ourselves outside of music and see what else we can do with our time.”
Maren is one of the leading voices in Country music today, with undeniable folk and pop influences that have catapulted her into hearts worldwide. Her latest album, 2019’s record-breaking GIRL, was named Album of the Year at the 2019 CMAs, and features her number 1 hit single “The Bones” which stood strong for 19 consecutive weeks making it the longest number 1 by a solo female musician… ever.
She says she knew the song was special after playing it for people close to her and seeing the incredibly positive reactions. “From the friends I played the demo for after I wrote it to now, I think it’s just such a quick, guttural reaction to a song,” she says.
“It’s kind of been a family favorite since I played it for my mom and dad and my brother-in-law. ‘The Bones’ was always the favorite of the batch of songs I would let them listen to before that record came out.”
“I think it just has resonated, especially this year, because it’s amounted to more than being a relationship or a love song. It’s kind of amounted to being this really medicinal cry for hope in a time where it’s a very unsteady and unpredictable time that we’re in right now. I feel like the whole message of ‘if the bones are good the rest doesn’t matter’ has applied to this year of 2020 being a complete mess.”
Morris’ follow up single, “To Hell & Back,” tells the story of a new love giving you space as you heal from an old flame which she feels came from her own personal experience. “It’s just a beautiful, melancholy kind of song,” says Maren. “I like love songs that feel real and they’re not pining after a boy, or wanting them to notice you or think you’re cute at the party and they pick you. I wanted it to be a meatier love song than what I’m used to hearing. So, I tried to just go by the book of my relationship.”
When things finally get back to some sort of normal, and tours begin to ramp up again, Maren will be right there for her fans and has a few songs in mind that she can’t wait to perform in front of a crowd again.
“I mean, definitely ’RSVP’ just because that’s always a fun one live. And then I think because 'The Bones' hit number one and became big during the pandemic, I haven’t gotten to receive that big, loud crowd sing it back to me moment with 'The Bones'... It’s ironic because it’s one of the biggest singles I’ve had. So, I’m looking forward to the time we can go out again safely and I can hear the crowd sing those words back to me.”
“I’m definitely gonna cry a lot… It’s gonna be like a giant therapy session.”
An Arlington, Texas native, Maren got her start playing hometown bars and quickly made a name for herself with her 2016 debut album, Hero, which enjoyed multi-Platinum and Gold-selling singles.
Morris has incredibly high honors at just 30-years-old -- she took home a GRAMMY for Best Country Solo Performance in 2017, was named New Artist of the Year at the 2016 CMAs, Top Country Female Artist at the 2018 Billboard Music Awards and New Female Vocalist of the Year at the 2017 CMAs. Morris was also the most-played female artist on Country radio in 2017 and 2018.
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