Lorrie Morgan Submitted photo

When you start your career with your first three albums (“Leave the Light On,” 1989; “Something in Red,” 1991; and “Watch Me,” 1992) going platinum, you must be doing something right and such was the case for Lorrie Morgan. Since then she’s racked up a string of gold records, not to mention four TNN/Music City News Female Vocalist of the Year awards in the mid to late 90s; also collaborations with the likes of Tammy Wynette, The Beach Boys, Dolly Parton and most recently, Pam Tillis. In fact, that duo’s still touring together (when their respective schedules allow) with a show called “Grits & Glamour.” Her singing voice features a warm tone, annunciation that is perfect, and palpable emotion which will be front and center when she and her band hit the Waterville Opera House stage on Saturday, Sept. 10.

Q: I want to thank you for giving me some time here to chat and learn a little about what you are going to be doing up here in Maine.
Morgan: Well, I’m going to be eating lobster (laughter). I love Maine, I’ve often wanted to move to the East Coast and everybody always says, “Oh my God, the snow will kill you!” I say, “Yes, but the food is so good!”

Q: (Laughter) I believe we’re becoming a foodie destination up here.
Morgan: Yes, you are.

Q: Now, where are you calling me from?
Morgan: I’m at home in Nashville and I’m on my way to another interview, I’ve got this time with you then another call, and then I’m on my way downtown to do another interview. Are we starting now?

Q: Yes, if you like, I am curious about the two projects you’re working on now: a new album and a book, too, I understand.
Morgan: It’s taken me five years to get this book even halfway done and it’s hard for me to write it when I’m in town because there’s so much happening at my house. I don’t have a lot of quiet there, it’s crazy.

Q: What’s the book about?
Morgan: It’s a true book, it’s how women survive in this industry and not just this industry, but it goes everywhere from a truck-stop waitress to a secretary to a teacher …it’s all about survival and it’s all about how you get past that. So, anyway, long story short, the book should be done in a couple of months. I also just finished up tracking my brand new album with my long-time producer and friend Richard Landis who produced all my big albums, “Something in Red” and “Watch Me” and all that stuff, so we’re really excited about that. I’m getting ready to go do vocals for that one, and then I’m doing another project called “L & L,” it’s me and Larry Gatlin and it’s all songs that Larry and I have written together, or Larry wrote, or I wrote; but it’s got a theme to it. I’m not going to say what the theme is but it’s very seamless, it’s a seamless album; so I’m really excited by all this and just really busy right now touring, and I can’t get everything together at once. Oh, I’m also getting ready to produce a young girl name Morgan Cheyenne that I found in Texas, she could actually be the new Loretta Lynn, that’s how country she is. Hopefully country music is going to come back full-force and she’s going to be at the top of the list, and I’m going to produce her in October. So (chuckle), I’ve got a lot of things I’m working on.

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Q: Good grief! It’s amazing that you can find time to tour with all this going on.
Morgan: I know, I know, but sometimes riding that tour bus for long periods of time I get a chance to pull out a pen and paper and write down things that I’ve got to do or I need to do and then I get them done on the bus. We’re going to Minnesota this weekend on a long bus ride so I’m sure I’ll get some pages of the book written then.

Q: What can folks expect from your show at the Waterville Opera House?
Morgan: Well, it depends on how much lobster they bring me (laughter), no, I’m just kidding. We kind of play it by ear, we have a set list we go by but I just like to throw things out now and then and make the band panic, that kind of thing; but I am going to be featuring Morgan Cheyenne, we’ll be doing a song or two. We have fun and we want the people to have fun and leave their worries outside those doors, everybody is so bogged down with worry and concern in this country, we just want them to be in there and laugh and have fun, and really get involved with our music and the stories I have to tell, and I love working opera houses, it’s my favorite place to work.

Q: Well, earlier on you mentioned having a set list. Is it hard, considering the wealth of material you’ve recorded over the years, to put that list together?
Morgan: It is and here’s the other thing people don’t think about, just like you get bored doing the same thing every day, we get bored doing the same song every night; so we’re trying to think of different songs to throw in the show so we can be excited about trying new things and stuff. I know that people expect us to do the hits, and we do, but we don’t do them all because we have to promote new projects we’re doing, as well, so yes, it’s very hard putting that set list together.

Q: Just out of curiosity, have you performed at the Waterville Opera House before?
Morgan: You know, that’s the hardest question somebody could ask me, Lucky, because I don’t remember. I guess I just get done and get on the bus and go to the next town.

Q: Well, considering how long you’ve been at this and the miles you’ve travelled over your career, it’s not surprising you can’t remember each and every venue you’ve been in; so, to conclude our conversation, here’s my final question: Is there anything that you’d like me to pass on to the folks reading this column?
Morgan: Please come to the show, please come and see us and enjoy some music; put your worries behind you, come and let us entertain you for a while, just come on out.

Lucky Clark, a 2018 “Keeping the Blues Alive” Award winner, has spent more than 50 years writing about good music and the people who make it. He can be reached at [email protected] if you have any questions, comments or suggestions.

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