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Interview with Morgan Reid
Hi Morgan, what got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
Thanks for having me! Well I’ve always listened to a lot of music and found myself very interested in listening intently from a young age. We had many genres in the house and I grew up taking some piano lessons and eventually guitar as well. I was busy studying dance in highschool and university, and in my free time I would practice as much as possible, finding an activity that took me away from the stresses of everyday life and something that I felt I could master.
To answer the second part… Although my dance and music career have been quite parallel in recent years, I suppose I would probably just still be dancing without the music. Failing that, I was very interested in science in highschool (and still am), particularly chemistry, so who knows! Maybe I would’ve become an audiophile either way and I could be working in the audio industry or something like that haha!
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
Recently I’ve spent a lot of time taking care of my 1 year old daughter, and I’m afraid my next album will be purely based on nursery rhymes. I am also very interested in ashtanga yoga, a rigorous form of yoga that requires serious focus. Along with my choreography background, these endeavors have pushed me to better myself as a musician and songwriter, while allowing me the space to explore my creativity. Definitely a big part of my philosophy but also too much to discuss in this answer. In short, I find myself searching for complexity in my unique experience, for these physical and mental experiences that focus my energy - the expression of my being in the music. Apparently I woke up on the art side of the bed this morning.
How long have you been making music?
I started making all kinds of music as a kid… but the first signs of my current music would have come around the time I started getting serious about guitar. At 18, after moving away to Europe, I had my first recording rig which consisted of a headset microphone sitting in front of a micro-guitar amp, and of course a cheap multi-effects pedal in front, into my dual-core computer. After the headaches that caused, I soon learned about audio interfaces and started recording whenever I could. Covers mostly, as I was still very much learning but also some rather trippy, guitar-only, original metal.
Where are you based and how did that influence your music?
I’m originally from Toronto, Canada, and have lived across Europe for the past 15+ years. This has had a real impact on music, since Toronto is so multicultural. I would accredit a lot of my love for music to hip-hop and rap, it was so encapsulating as a child. My sister had a riot girl band when I was 12, so I definitely had an eclectic view of music. My professional dance career had me working with and dissecting a lot of amazing classical music as well and I would cite Philip Glass as a massive influence on me musically, among many others.
Tell me about your most memorable shows, if you haven’t played live what is your vision for a live show?
Playing Hellfest with my band Bloodshot Dawn was pretty insane, it was bright and early but the energy was tangible, never have 40 minutes gone by faster for me in my life. Just playing live in general is so amazing, I often have these moments on stage where I feel time standing still, while playing some of the most challenging technical material I find myself just standing there watching. I guess it’s the adrenaline… but wow. I also had an awesome hometown show in Toronto on our Canadian tour a couple years back. It was surreal to have the crowd chanting my name, I mean most people probably didn’t even know I was from there before the show started (since the band is UK-based), but moments like that make the financial instability of a music career worth it haha. Also, Toronto knows how to party hard!
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
I like clean venues. I would love to play in some crazy huge and nice arenas one day.
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
I’m not really fussed honestly, I would probably just get all my favorite bands together, so I could watch.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into making music and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
Realize your strengths, practice those… There will always be someone who can do something better but at the end of the day music is subjective. Keep doing it, keep creating and be mindful of the challenges you face. Don’t take what someone else can teach you for granted. Learning on Youtube can be good, but sitting and learning something by ear is better. Don’t listen to the haters, if you put yourself out there… they will be lurking.
To myself: don’t wait until your hair turns grey to put out your debut album haha.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
I think the title song “Terran” is a symbol of hope for this album. It carried a lot of my motivation to finish in and although I didn’t write any leads to it for a long time (it was sitting there as a riff-only song), I just always thought it was so cool and different and made me feel like my musical voice is worth something, and should be heard! I also love CRISP. Bonus fun fact about my album, the intro to the whole album “March On” is actually the very very first thing I wrote while thinking about writing solo music.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
N/A I’ve yet to play live with this project, but would love to get a group together for a tour!
What is your creative process, and what inspires you to write your music?
I have various ways to write music and be creative! Sometimes ideas just come to me and others I spend hours refining short phrases. When writing this album I spent a lot of time with my guitar, starting off with riff ideas and developing them, the base of the song very much coming from what I can do on the instrument. I feel it's very unique since there is only one of me, my taste, my limitations as a musician… as opposed to writing using software where I interface with my expectations. I'm inspired to create high-intensity, exhilarating music, because that's what I love to hear. I want to get goosebumps while listening, and I find that extremely groovy, epic, and melodic material gets that done for me. I'm inspired to write music from an intrinsic motivation to create.
Do you have messages that you like to get across in your music, if so please tell me about them?
I think the music speaks for itself,.but I've also explored some very specific concepts with tracks on the album. The overarching theme is of Terran, an alternate version of earth that lets us see our shortcomings or failures, and our darkness. Hopefully, we can learn from them. I think it comes through in the tracks, it's a mix of heavy brutality and mechanical imagery with the more hopeful and epic side.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
This album is the highlight for sure, it's been years in the making and I want as many people as possible to hear it, hate it or love it, I'm trying to make a statement. I will continue with a singles-based approach for this project, I'll be releasing an album with my band Bloodshot Dawn soon as well… and I have a not-so-secret instrumental death metal project on the horizon which I'm super stoked for musically.
How can your fans best keep up to date with you, any socials you want people to check out?
Definitely follow me on Instagram for frequent guitaring, subscribe on YouTube if you enjoy light-hearted and longer form guitar-related content and if you just want to stay up to date with my music and other personal stuff, Facebook is a great place to interact with me. So thanks so much for listening and hope to see you online or at a show in the future! :D