The Manhattan-born Blake Morgan is a musician, singer, executive, music producer, writer, record label owner, and activist. Raised by activist parents who were also writers—his mother is the poet Robin Morgan and his father is the poet Kenneth Pitchford–Morgan was immersed early on in the arts. By five he was at the piano playing Mozart and writing his own songs and the classical pianist path was being forged. But then he heard the Beatles and that path forked a different way. Educated at the United Nations International School in New York City and later Berkelee College of Music, Morgan graduated and hit the ground running, playing in bands and living the rock and roll lifestyle. He signed a seven-record deal with Phil Ramone’s fledgling label in ’96, his debut album featured Lenny Kravitz singing back up,
he toured the U.S. opening for Joan Jett and received tons of attention and critical acclaim. Morgan was crushing it, but he was mistrustful of the corporate label life and he got himself out of his contract.
In 2002 he decided to form Engine Company Records, which became ECR Music in 2012. ECR has an associate publishing company and the music the label has released has ranged from punk to classical and in 2005, they had five albums in the Top 20. Meanwhile, Morgan kept cranking out great critically acclaimed solo albums. From Burning Daylight to Silencer to Diamonds in the Dark to his new one
Violent Delights, Morgan’s music is a crunchy blend of melodic pop, introspective ballads and hook-laden numbers that are played with equal parts muscle and heart. And speaking of heart, Morgan’s is with artists and his political activism is specifically on their behalf. His Pandora takedown alone cost the company’s stock to fall 130 million in less than a day and signaled a major victory for musicians. He’s spent hours with Congress fighting for the rights of musicians which are always being marginalized especially in the digital age. Just Google his Art and Music Are Professions Worth Fighting For essay and you’ll get a sense of who this guy is. He’s one of the good ones. And this is a great chat.
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