EPK

Bio

Short Version

2018 Kerrville New Folk Contest winner Sarah Morris has spent the last 8 years earning a reputation for engaging performances - with a voice both clear and lush, and a penchant for sharply-crafted songs. Sarah hails from Minneapolis, Minnesota, music was etched upon her DNA at a young age. Morris immersed herself in her parent’s eclectic record collection before finally falling in love with the storytelling and songcraft in country music. The music of Mary Chapin Carpenter, Alison Krauss, and Kathy Mattea changed Sarah’s course entirely.

After graduating from the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music, she wasted no time packing her bags for Nashville. Her years in Music City instilled a traditional songwriting sensibility fully on display over the course of her recent albums: 2017’s Hearts in Need of Repair, and 2015’s Ordinary Things. Both albums received critical acclaim, international airplay, and reached the top 100 of the Americana Music Associations radio chart. In addition to her recent win at Kerrville, she was a top 4 finalist in The 2016 NewSong Music Contest at Lincoln Center in NYC, took 2nd place at the 2016 Chris Austin Songwriting Competition at MerleFest in Wilkesboro, NC, was a 2016 Americana semi-finalist in the International Songwriting Competition, and received an honorable mention in the 2018 Telluride Troubadour contest.

Sarah has opened for JD Souther, Suzy Boggus, and Teddy Thompson, among others.  Deeply rooted in the Minneapolis music scene, she maintains a national touring schedule as well - as a solo artist, with her longtime backing band, the Sometimes Guys, and as part of Americana duo The Home Fires – alongside good friend and fellow Americana artist Vicky Emerson.   

“Sarah Morris [is] a bright, clear, brilliant songwriter. There are those albums you hear once in a while that just sound right, just pure and crisp and perfect and they make you think well, here’s someone with a…gift.” Jon Hunt, L‘Etoile Magazine

“And what a voice it is, never showy or seeking the limelight, just impressive within the requirements of the song and that in itself, in this day and age, is a rare thing. It is that restraint, coupled with the room to breathe that the songwriting affords her that makes her shine so brightly.” – Dancing About Architecture

Medium Version

Over the last five years, Americana singer-songwriter Sarah Morris has been busy building: a family, a band, and a reputation for engaging performances, with a voice both clear and lush. Sarah hails from Minneapolis, Minnesota, where from a young age, music was etched upon her DNA. Morris immersed herself in her parent’s eclectic record collection before finally falling in love with the storytelling and songcraft in country music.  The music of Mary Chapin Carpenter, Alison Krauss, and Kathy Mattea changed Sarah’s course entirely.  After graduating from the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music, she wasted no time packing her bags for Nashville. Her years in Music City instilled a traditional songwriting sensibility that has earned her latest album Ordinary Things international airplay, and critical acclaim.  She was a top 4 finalist in The NewSong Music Contest at Lincoln Center in NYC (January 2016), she took 2nd place at the 2016 Chris Austin Songwriting Competition at MerleFest in Wilkesboro, NC, and her song, “Brighter” was a 2016 Americana semi-finalist in the International Songwriting Competition.  Ordinary Things spent 6 months on the AMA chart (Americana Music Association), spending 4 weeks in the top 100.  With the release of her third album, Hearts In Need Of Repair, Sarah offers 11 new songs spanning the Americana sonosphere.  Returning to RiverRock Studios in Minneapolis, Sarah co-produced the album with Eric Blomquist.  Longtime bandmates Thomas Nordlund, Andrew Foreman, and Zachary Schmidt joined them in the studio, laying a foundation that blends folk-rock and country influences.  Hearts In Need Of Repair showcases Sarah’s captivating vocals and sharply crafted lyrics, exploring vulnerability, heartbreak, and grown-up, imperfect love.

Long Version

Over the last five years, Americana singer-songwriter Sarah Morris has been busy building: a family, a band, and a dedicated following in the fiercely competitive Minneapolis music scene. Releasing back to back albums in 2011 and 2012 (Grateful Moon, Lonely or Free), earned Morris a reputation for engaging performances, and a voice both clear and lush. Looking to bring songwriting back into her life, following the birth of her second child, in 2014 Sarah joined a prompt-based online songwriting challenge. At first unsure of how she would manage to write a song each week with two little ones at her feet, Sarah was delighted to find that the challenge actually gave her the structure - and the inspiration she’d been craving.  The result was weekly video postings of new songs in their most raw state, and loads of new material.

In the spring of 2015, Sarah and her longtime bandmates (Thomas Nordlund, Andrew Foreman, and Zach Schmidt worked with accomplished producer, and longtime collaborator, Eric Blomquist to record Ordinary Things, which earned international airplay and critical acclaim.  Recently, Sarah and the band returned to RiverRock Studios to record her third album, Hearts In Need Of Repair.  On her latest effort,  Sarah offers 11 new songs spanning the Americana sonosphere. Sarah co-produced the album with Eric Blomquist.  Thomas, Andrew, and Zach joined them in the studio, laying a foundation that blends folk-rock and country influences.  Hearts In Need Of Repair showcases Sarah’s captivating vocals and sharply crafted lyrics, exploring vulnerability, heartbreak, and grown-up, imperfect love.

Born and raised in the Twin Cities of Minnesota, music was etched upon her DNA from a young age. Morris immersed herself in her parent’s eclectic record collection, filling her head with the sounds of Bowie, Sinatra and The Carpenters, among others, before finally falling in love with the storytelling and songcraft in country music.  The music of Mary Chapin Carpenter, Alison Krauss, and Kathy Mattea changed Sarah’s course entirely.  After graduating from the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music, she wasted no time packing her bags for Nashville. Her years in Music City instilled a traditional songwriting sensibility that has earned her latest album Ordinary Things national airplay, and critical acclaim: “Rootsy singer Sarah Morris offers a Norah Jones-like approach to Americana/alt-country, smoothing overs its rough edges with a butter-velvety voice and an intimate songwriting style.”   Chris RiemenschneiderStar Tribune.

A polished and committed performer, Morris’s hard work has paid off, propelling her into the national spotlight as a top 4 finalist in The NewSong Music Contest at Lincoln Center in NYC (January 2016), her song “I Go Back” took 2nd place at the 2016 Chris Austin Songwriting Competition at MerleFest in Wilkesboro, NC, and the opening track of Ordinary Things, “Brighter” was a 2016 Americana semi-finalist in the International Songwriting Competition.  Ordinary Things spent 6 months on the AMA chart (Americana Music Association), reaching #85, as well as 2 months on the Euro Americana chart.  Sarah has opened for JD Souther, Suzy Bogguss, and Teddy Thompson & Kelly Jones.  Sarah performs roughly 80 shows a year – both with her band, and with fellow Americana artist, Vicky Emerson, in their duo, The Home Fires.

Sarah will celebrate the release of Hearts In Need Of Repair on November 10th(her birthday!!) at The Hook and Ladder Theater in Minneapolis.  Fellow former Nashvillian Graham Bramblett will open the evening with his band, and Becky Rae Dalton will perform on the lounge stage.  The album will be available at all digital music retailers on November 17th.

Press Quotes

"truly transformational talent" - J. Chillen, No Depression

“Sarah Morris [is] a bright, clear, brilliant songwriter. There are those albums you hear once in a while that just sound right, just pure and crisp and perfect and they make you think well, here’s someone with a…gift.” Jon Hunt, L‘Etoile Magazine

"There is nothing ordinary about this feature length slice of pop-tinged, rustic Americana. With superb songwriting, great singings and a helluva backing band there is no doubt that Sarah Morris is primed to go far with this effort." – Randy Thomas, Indie Arts Alliance – 1/19/2016

{On Nice Girl} "Morris slinks and slithers through this track and imbues it with hard-won humor, vulnerability, and defiance." – Skope Magazine.  1/10/2016

"Morris’ vocal chords are creamy, drenched in honey and her voice cracks during some of the higher notes showcasing a beautifully human performance." – William Elgin – MTS Management Blog.  1/19/2016

"Morris is impressive throughout – caressing, yanking melodies around, elongating lines, and filling the album’s ten songs with soul and power rarely defined so clearly." - - Pamela Bellmore - Indiemunity

Press Links​