Maren Morris won my heart when I first moved to Nashville at the end of February. The very first event I attended as a Nashville resident was the Girls of Winter songwriters round, which consisted of acclaimed talent like Cassadee Pope, Caitlyn Smith, Sarah Haze, Maggie Chapman, Emily West, Heather Morgan, and a little firecracker named Maren Morris.
At first glance, Maren is absolutely beautiful and edgy, sporting a tiny frame and confidence that seeps from her pores. When Maren takes the stage, you can do nothing but wildly stare, realizing that you have just discovered your next favorite artist. With a voice as big as her home state of Texas, Maren combines the country music flavor with pop and folk, creating a sound that will proverbially take you right to church.
This week, Maren made her rounds as part of the CMA Awards festivities, and, to the surprise of nobody who had already known about her, her name is now in the mouths of everybody involved in the industry; including, fans, radio executives, radio personalities, print media, fellow artists, and label heads.
Lucky for Sony Music Nashville, the label predicted the success of Maren, signing her to a record deal this year. She is now getting ready to head out on tour with one-third of Lady Antebellum, Charles Kelley, where fans can likely expect to hear songs off Maren’s self-titled EP (released today), as well as cuts she wrote for artists like Tim McGraw (“Last Turn Home” off Sundown Heaven Town) and Kelly Clarkson (“Second Wind” off Piece by Piece). Fans can also expect Maren’s church to be a place they find solitude, as it is simply impossible not to get lost in the stunning performer on the stage.
I called it many months ago when I first saw Maren at City Winery Nashville, and I will repeat it loudly and clearly — this is the next big thing in the music industry — all sub five feet of her.