Barb Morrison and I have been friends for many years and have also worked together in the past on some of my music and film scores. I asked Barb a few personal questions about her work and this is what she had to say.
RE: How do you choose what artists or projects to work on?
BM: I can tell right when I meet someone whether or not we're gonna be able to work together. It's a common language, a sense of humor, a meeting of the minds about past experiences and especially lyrics. If I can key into someone's lyrics, then I know exactly what to do with the direction. I never really hear a lot of producers talk about lyrics. But in my opinion, one of the strongest things that grabs a listener is the message. If the lyrics are stupid or you cant relate, then there's no point in making a song around it.
RE: Name five new artists and five classic artists you'd love to work with.
BM: James Blake, Janelle Monae, Paramore, Cold Specks and Macklemore would be the newer artists. For classic artists: Joni Mitchell, Missy Elliot, David Bowie, Nile Rogers and Soundgarden.
RE: How do you know when something you're working on is "right" and finished? Is it a visceral feeling or technical thing?
BM: I really do believe music is magic and that its a series of vibrations, so when its really RIGHT its a combination of a spiritual rush and a deep, intuitive calm. Psychologist Abraham Maslow describes it as peak experience. You totally know it when it happens. It's the most beautiful feeling ever to walk into the studio with NOTHING and walk out having birthed a song. To make it out of thin air or to allow it to come through you. It doesn't get more spiritual than that.
RE: What do you like do outside the studio?
BM: Connecting with people I love is the most important thing for me -- my relationship and my friends. My favorite place is the beach, and I have a summer home on Cherry Grove, so I spend a lot of time there. I've been meditating every day since 2006, so that's a big part of my life too and the perfect place for that is the beach. When it's not summertime, I'm a huge NFL fan, so that keeps me busy during the rest of the year. I'm also really into cooking, going to the gym and sleeping, but not all at the same time.