March 18, 2012
Play Date: Angela Morris
What’s on this music photographer / model’s heavy rotation…
- Produced by Nancy Staab
- Portrait by Brandon Funk
What sonic soundbites is Morris snacking on? Southern rock, Janelle Monae, and examples of “electronica-meets-80’s-post-punk.”
Talented Atlanta photographer Angela Morris may feel more at home behind a camera lens than a microphone or electric guitar, but that’s not to say that music isn’t an integral part of her artistic life. Her brother is a drummer; she fell in love with her husband Dan Morris (a rock musician, natch) by watching him perform on stage with his band Marathon in divey venues in Little Five Points at age 19; and once she graduated from Art Institute of Atlanta, she quickly immersed herself in documenting Atlanta’s eclectic music scene. Morris has photographed everyone from Kenny Rogers to Linkin Park, Usher, Angie Stone and Ke$ha. She also shoots fashion, weddings and commercial photography and has modeled on the side for many a magazine (still sample-size gorgeous after three babies). However, it’s the scrappy, romantic, creative, often nocturnal and bohemian milieu of music (equal parts grit and glamour) that really sparks her photographic mojo. Morris’ very first assignment was for Caren West PR, documenting Music Midtown. Since then, her work has graced the pages of many national glossies, including Billboard magazine, Essence, Heart & Soul magazine, People and Spin. Her most recent gig? Photographing Atlanta R&B artist Algebra Blessett, whose music you can hear on Showtime’s The L Word and Grammy Award-winning producers Kuk Harrell (Rihanna, Beyonce, Mary J. Blige, Leona Lewis) and Bangladesh (Lil Wayne, Gucci Mane, Ludacris, Nicki Minaj). In her downtime Morris has written music reviews for Performer magazine and she’s loading up her iPod with everything from Southern rock and Janelle Monáe to examples of “electronica-meets-80’s-post-punk.” Here’s a playlist of the sonic soundbites that Morris is currently snacking on.
See more of Angela Morris’ photography at www.angelaphotography.com
WHAT I AM LISTENING TO NOW:
Ponderosa: Moonlight Revival
The melodic, soulful voice of Kalen Nash on the band’s performance of “Heather” is enough to make anyone keep their finger on the repeat button. The group’s gritty Southern rock vibe is just what America needs a little more of.
Hot Track: “Heather” (from their upcoming album, out June 2012)
Current album Moonlight Revival at
The Naked and Famous: Passive Me Aggressive You
Riding the waive of electronica and 80’s post-punk popularity, this New Zealand ensemble resembles groups such as Passion Pit and Temper Trap.
Hot Track: “Punching in a Dream”
Soulphonics & Ruby Velle: Heartlite
Ruby Velle is a tiny girl with a big voice and a whole lotta soul. She’s backed by a six-piece band of trumpet, two saxophones, organ, guitar, bass and drums. Based out of Atlanta, you can catch them live at venues they frequent such as The Earl, Woodruff Arts Center or Center Stage.
Hot Track: the single “Heartlight”
Aslyn: The Dandelion Sessions
Singer-songwriter/piano player Aslyn seems to be channeling Billy Joel or Carole King as she cranks out song after song that already feels like a crafted classic… Just as Piano Man is as relevant today as it was 35 years ago, a listener never leaves one of Aslyn’s shows without feeling like she just poured out her soul to you, and you get to take a little piece of that with you out the door.
Hot Track: “Me and You and Daises”
Young the Giant: from their self-titled album Young the Giant
When British artist Morrissey praises a band’s music, as he did with Young the Giant, it is enough to make any music lover check out their alt-rock sound.
Hot Track: “Cough Syrup”
Janelle Monáe: Metropolis: the Chase Suite
Open your ears and mind to Janelle Monáe’s creative soul with this conceptual album based on a character named Cindi Mayweather and the year 2719. Monáe’s background in musical theatre is evident in her effortless combination of cabaret,60’s-style pop, soul, and hip-hop.
Hot Track: “Mr. President”
Bison could be describes as “Mumford and Sons with a twist.” This group combines indie-folk with classical influences that results in a sound that is both haunting and magical.
Hot Track: “Switzerland”
SEE SLIDESHOW OF EXAMPLES OF ANGELA’S MUSIC PHOTOGRAPHY BELOW