Country start Lorrie Morgan comes to Houston’s Arena Theatre
Country star Lorrie Morgan, one of the most eloquently emotive country vocalists of modern times, spent a lifetime becoming an overnight sensation. The road to her explosion on the scene as the first woman in country music with three consecutive Platinum albums began with her birth in Nashville as the daughter of Country Music Hall of Fame member George Morgan, and being given the iconic name, Loretta Lynn Morgan. She made her debut on the Grand Ole Opry stage at age 13, singing “Paper Roses.” She comes to the Arena Saturday, March 3 as part of the launch of her first new solo album in five years.
The new album, “Letting Go...Slow” on Shanachie Entertainment is a collection that showcases a rainbow of emotions, from darkest heartache to bright, shiny humor. “Where I am in my life right now, I’m not afraid to express what I feel, or what I don’t feel,” she comments about the collection’s varied moods. “I’m not afraid to express my views on anything, especially on being a woman. I have been a daughter, a bride, a mother, a divorcee, a widow, a single mother, a breadwinner and, ultimately, a survivor. In many ways, I am a living, breathing country song, and I know what I sing.”
Morgan has long been the envy of her peers for her lustrous vocal phrasing and the down-to-earth believability of her torchy performances. On records such as “A Picture of Me Without You” and “I Guess You Had to Be There,” she ached with pain. She was feisty and sassy in “Watch Me,” “What Part of No” “Five Minutes” and “I Didn’t Know My Own Strength.” She has kicked up her stiletto heels in fun on her hits “Except for Monday” and “Go Away.” On her epic “Something in Red” she was an anguished, struggling everywoman. Her performances on Letting Go….Slow can match any of her earlier efforts, for they are among the most vibrant of her career. The collection is divided equally between new songs and her reinventions of country classics.
Lorrie Morgan has been around great songs all her life, and like the songs, there has been joy and tragedy. Her father died suddenly of a heart attack at age 51. She was 16 at the time and just beginning her musical career, so she took over and led his band for two years. Lorrie Morgan began making records while finding work as a receptionist and a demo singer, writing songs the whole time. She was honored with induction into the Opry cast when she was just 24. She married fellow country singer Keith Whitley in 1986. She was signed to RCA Records in 1987, and her onslaught of hits began the following year. Whitley’s tragic death of an alcohol overdose in 1989 left her a widowed working mother. Their duet “Til a Tear Becomes a Rose” earned her a 1990 CMA award.
Her first three albums, Leave the Light On (1989), Something in Red (1991) and Watch Me (1992), all earned Platinum Record awards. Her Greatest Hits collection (1999) is also Platinum. War Paint (1994), Greater Need (1996) and Shakin’ Things Up (1997) are all Gold Record winners. Lorrie Morgan maintained her recording pace in the new millennium, and sparkled in the lavish Enchanted Christmas productions at the opulent Opryland Resort in Nashville, eventually taking that show on the road.
Arena Theatre, “Houston’s Legendary Theatre in the Round,” is located at 7326 Southwest Freeway, Houston. To buy tickets, call the box office ticket request line at 713-772-5900, or www.arenahouston.com.