Maren Morris Recalls the Low Point of Her ‘Circles Around This Town’ Journey
Maren Morris says she never came close to giving up on the Nashville dream, but her "Circles Around This Town" journey has certainly had some low points.
Talking to Taste of Country Nights, the reigning ACM Female Vocalist of the Year recalls running into walls as a staff writer, shortly after moving to Music City. She wasn't trying to be a full-scale entertainer at that point. Morris' goal was to land songs on other artists' albums, but consistently she got the same feedback.
"Everyone kept telling me that these songs are great, but no one can do this vocal the way that you did it. And I remember being really offended by that," she shares when pressed to reveal the hardest part.
On Friday (Jan. 7), Morris shared "Circles Around This Town," her first single from a new studio album that's set to drop "soon." The song relies on details of her coming-to-Nashville story and leaves listeners with a message of hard work paying off.
"So many times I thought about leaving / Got my ass kicked trying to compete with / Everybody else’s ones that got away," she sings to begin the second verse.
"There was just not a ton of traction," Morris tells ToC Nights host Evan Paul. "I would get songs put on hold all the time, but they would never fully get to record mode. I remember thinking, ‘Maybe it wasn’t for me.'"
Moving back to Texas was never a realistic option, but the bad days were pretty soul-crushing. Writer's rounds at well-known venues including the Listening Room, the Basement and Belcourt Taps (where she'd soon meet her future husband, Ryan Hurd) steadied Morris. Eventually, the breaks came, and later — as her songs "My Church" and "80s Mercedes" hit — she figured out what people were really saying when they told her no one could sing the vocal like she could.
"Now looking back, I’m like, ‘Oh they were trying to tell me that I should be the one singing them,'" Morris says, smiling.
The full interview with Morris is coming next Thursday (Jan. 13) for Taste of Country Nights On Demand listeners.