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Morgan Saint with Lavender
Tuesday November 7, 2017
D: 7:00 // S: 8:00 PM
“Hatred is not in my blood. Euphoria is what I feel in my dreams. Love is what I’m searching for.” Those twenty words at the start of Morgan Saint’s debut EP,17 Hero, form a manifesto and a map for the music that follows. Saint’s songs chronicle of emotional thrills and crashes, and they challenge preconceptions —notions of how pop can sound, how it works and what it can accomplish. Morgan Saint can turn deeply personal moments into soaring choruses, and transform ear-grabbing hooks into intimate singer-songwriter revelations.
Saint calls her music “moody pop,” and says her goal is to craft songs match indelible melodies to lyrics that deliver substance. “I want for it to be super catchy and stay in your head, but I also want to tell a story and have people relate in a way that’s real and raw,” she says. “I don’t want to be afraid to say things that might be a little dark or a little questionable.”
The songs of 17 Heroare defined by luscious melodicism and bracing honesty. “Why don’t we be friends?” the chorus of “Just Friends” asks. “Why don’t we make out?” Later, over the swelling keyboards and bubbling percussion of “For God’s Sake,” Saint has different questions: “Should I just move on? Or were we brought together by fate?” It’s a cross between the directness of a text message and the disarming privacy of a diary entry.
Morgan Saint grew up on the eastern end of the North Fork of Long Island, a laid back environment known for its vineyards and farms. “I come from a very small town, but it’s very beautiful out there,” she says. “And it’s by the water, so a lot of times I would be at the beach.” She remembers music around her growing up. “On my mom’s side, my great grandma, my grandma and my aunts are really musical. They grew up singing and harmonizing, and it was something that was prevalent. If I think back to childhood, I was playing piano, I was always singing.”
Despite eight years of piano lessons, she never quite mastered reading music. Instead, she’d invent her own music at the keyboard. “My piano teacher would go to the bathroom and then I’d be just making up songs,” she says. “I didn’t even know what I was playing. She’d come back and be like, ‘How did you just do that? I’ve always been much better at figuring it out. Just sitting down at the piano and experimenting led to me doing that a lot.”