Electronic dance music has gotten a bad rap. But the haters won’t define music producer Chris Morgan aka CMOR.
“This music can be controversial. You are making it on a computer. But at the end of the day, music is a vibrational frequency through the air in rhythmic patterns that people like,” he says. “I make high-energy music, and it depends on how I’m feeling. Sometimes it’s a range of melodic music and sometimes I just want to make songs that make people want to dance and party.”
Skrillex nailed the industry issue in his interview with Katie Couric: “EMD is more of a platform than a genre.” If EDM is giving emerging artists an unlimited, uncharted way to expressive themselves, maybe that’s the whole point.
At just at 24, Morgan, who is based in Charleston, South Carolina, already has a lot of finished tracks in his pocket. He’s signed with record label Panda Funk.
The young producer spends long days in his studio, manipulating sounds and frequencies on an Ableton system. He’s playing with drum sequences and engineering new sounds—all from a computer and digital audio workstation, or DAW.
“I like taking sounds from other genres, like implementing a guitar and using live instruments, and making it into a normal,” he says. “I don’t even know what I’m going to come out with. I just do what sounds right at the time.”
While the art form is energizing, it’s also hard work. “Doing music full time can take a toll on you,” he says. “Locking yourself in a room for 12 to 14 hours a day can get very stressful.”
To let off steam Morgan runs: a two-mile jog, sometimes twice a day. Play has always been part of his jam. “Music is an outlet, but when it’s a job, too, exercise or physical activity is important,” he says. “As human beings we need to do something—kicking a soccer ball, jogging, doing yoga—anything physical to lessen creative blocks.”
Morgan draws inspiration from all of his surroundings, including the slow, laid-back pace of life in the South. “I have an audio sampler that I run around with. There’s even a recording of peacocks on my aunt’s farm,” he says.
When he’s not mixing, running or sampling, Morgan is playing live venues, which elicits a whole different kind of energy.
“To have thousands of people dance to my music and connect with it is amazing,” he says. “Because it’s not lyrics that you pull someone in with, they have to relate to the energy. You capture people in the moment and you take people into your own world.”
So what’s next for Morgan? He’s coy.
What are Chris Morgan's favorite Nectar?
"I rock the Coltic"
“I have an eclectic sense to my music,” he says. “I’m not a one-trick pony.”
Does that mean an album? I guess he’ll keep us guessing.