Following the soft release of her 4th album Edison Gloriette, Jess Morgan – Grapevine’s January CoverSTAR – announces UK tour dates for 2017. The tour kicks off in Hackney, London at the Americana Music Association’s showcase on Feb 1st. The album will be commercially released on April 14th 2017 to coincide with Record Store Day (April 15th). Jess will be performing in-store at Relevant Records in Cambridge on RSD.
Jess Morgan is a songwriter’s songwriter. A cerebral storyteller. Her new album is a tumbler of unfancied folk-roots music, with heart, passion and gusto. As well as crafting songs, Jess also hand crafts her own DIY vinyl records to create unique pieces of art, such as a 7” for ‘Natalie’ / ‘In Brooklyn’ made exclusively for her Pledge music supporters. In a recent article The 405 called her “a true DIY artist in her element. Seriously, she does it all.” A limited number of handmade records will be available at Relevant Records on Record Store Day.
When it came for the Norwich-based singer-songwriter to start recording tracks on ‘Edison Gloriette’ Norway was calling. Jess returned to Bergen team-up with collaborators from her 2010 debut, producer HP Gunderson and producer and studio engineer Daniel Birkeland. She wanted to record slowly and meaningfully following a mad 5 years of touring and rapid releases. 2 weeks in a quiet cabin, alongside a fjord on the outskirts of Bergen was just the right change of pace. ‘We recorded against the most incredible backdrop taking breaks for walks, drinking beer at the water’s edge’ explains Jess.
Back in the UK Jess brought on friends Stephen MacLachlan – to work on percussion – and Ben Savage and Hannah Sanders to record backing vocals. Noel Dashwood also joined the ‘Edison Gloriette’ dream-team to add some soulful dobro solos to ‘Red Rubies’, the true story of an unusual bird eating man, and ‘Still In Fashion’ which Jess describes as being about, ‘the fear of tomorrow that casts a long shadow over today’.
Jess’ songs are acutely observed tales of life, love, people and places. Album opener ‘Longest Arm’ is a snapshot of an encounter between a man and a waitress and the feelings stirred in their shared moment. Rousing track ‘Hymn In The Morning’ is about priorities changing as you get older, ‘I started writing this song in the wake of one of those mornings where you haul yourself out of bed and feel like you just can’t do nights out like you used to!’ says Jess, ‘I imagined the story set in the small hours, spending the morning in bed, shaking off the night with someone you love’. Rootsy-ballad ‘In Your Life’ is both challenging and optimistic.
The past 5 years have seen Jess cement her place in the burgeoning folk, roots and Americana scene throughout the UK and Europe. Her music has attracted the ears of BBC Radio 2, BBC 6 Music, Uncut, The Telegraph, The Guardian, R2 and Folk Radio UK, to name a few. New album ‘Edison Gloriette’ follows on from Jess’ 2010 debut ‘All Swell’, 2012’s ‘Aye Me’ and her highly acclaimed 2014 release ‘Langa Langa’. In summer 2015 Jess released ‘The Bournemouth EP’ which sold-out its limited edition run in less than 24 hours.
“A real treat… an enormously gifted songwriter”