Sunday, February 04, 2007

Heather's next step toward stardom

I first met Heather Morgan during my stint as membership assistant at the Nashville Songwriters Assn. Int'nat'l (NSAI). There is a regular flow of songwriters through that office, incl. the up and coming, the down and out, and the don't-have-a-clue-that-they-don't-have-a-chance. Heather displayed more signs of "success in progress" than most; she had established a base in Dallas and was making the next logical step. I was glad to be witness to it, and maybe give it a nudge here and there on its way--not that she needed me, of course. It wasn't long before she was signed to a publishing deal with Warner-Chappell, which was an achievement in itself, but I didn't doubt she/they had an eye on even bigger things for her as a artist. The publishers like to get the most for their money and effort, and they've found it's easier to get their songs recorded if their own writers are doing the recording and performing.

Last Tuesday (Jan. 30) I got to see the next step as Heather performed with a band for some industry folks (including Tracy Gershon of Sony Music and former judge for Nashville Star, one of the few luminaries I actually recognize at these things).

Because I was uncharacteristically on time, I managed to get a seat, and had the pleasure of sharing a table with Angelique and Devon of Crowded House Entertainment. "Professional music fan" (read his blog, you'll see what I mean) John A. joined us later. Not only did I have a great vantage point for photos but I felt like I was really part of the "in crowd."

Heather seemed very comfortable on stage, and meshed well with the band. She managed to display the silly side of her charm when she confessed she realized halfway into a song she had not gotten rid of all her gum, and was afraid it might be projected into the audience, but managed to swallow it thereby averting disaster. Her performance was proof to me that, although her style is left of center of pop-country, it is as accessible as anything on the radio, and I'd say it's ahead of the curve in many ways.

I finally got to meet Heather's mom, who was well aware of me via my e-mails to Heather (as part of Heather's aforementioned home base of support), and I'm pretty sure she's seen the lyrics to a song of mine about a songwriter named Heather who arrives at her mother's deathbed "just in time." That last part is pure fiction...though I did read an article after I wrote the song where another musician in town found herself in a similar situation...strange. But Mom looked perfectly healthy, and was very kind, and of course proud as a peacock to be there for Heather's "coming up" performance. I told her I look forward to being part of the "entourage"--preferably with my own vehicle. I don't see me doing the bus thing. I'm sure Heather will be able to afford it.

No comments: