Morgen La Civita had already made her mark in the world of radio and television voice overs, as well as commercial copy writing, when she made the transition to songwriting.
In less then three years, she has been featured on over 25 albums, has had several songs licensed by various music publishers and has received radio airplay on major market stations, including WWOZ in New Orleans, Jazz88 in San Francisco and NBC's "Good Morning New Orleans".
Her haunting vocals, dramatic lyrics and fusion of soul, blues and world genres, tell the musical equivalent of campfire ghost stories and give her an edgy and unique sound for today's increasingly competitive market.
Her EPK reflects both her personal style as an artist as well as her ability to collaborate with other musicians and producers on their own projects.
Socially conscious, Morgen provides specialized music, for causes close to her heart. This has earned her the reputation of being not only unaffected, but genuinely down to earth and easy to work with, a fading quality among today's rising stars.
Morgen has a home studio where she writes, records and mixes all her music with her 2 time Grammy winning partner (Celia Cruz, Marc Anthony, Ricky Martin, Paulina Rubio) Jake R. Tanner. The studio includes Pro Tools Native, Focusrite preamps, AKG microphones and an acoustically treated vocal booth.
Look for Morgen's new Live Piano cd, "Who I Am (The Piano Sessions) available now! http://morgenlacivita.bandcamp.com/
Launch Music Conference (2012)
Cape May Singer/Songwriter Festival 2012
Singer Universe, Top 5 Vocalists of the month, February, 2012
Cape May Singer/Songwriter Festival 2012
"What Love Can Do" is currently featured in Kia's "Got Soul" viral promotion.
1st Place winner for Gary Allen's "Best New Song Contest" (August 2011) for "On and On" & "What Love Can Do"
2nd Place winner for American Songwriter Magazine's Lyric
contest (Sept/Oct 2010) for "Grandmother's Song".
One of the Top 5 vocalists for Singer Universe (July, 2011)
One of the Top 5 Songs for Songwriter Universe (October,2010)
One of the Top 5 vocalists for Singer Universe (February 2010)
One of the Top 5 vocalists of the month for Singer Universe (January 2011)
Art for Progress Song Competition Winner (Oct, 2010)
Humanitarian award nominee for OUT Music (October
Ozcat Radio KZCT 89.5 FM Vallejo, CA
GRM 780 Radio
WITTR Radio Network
Women of Substance Radio http://womenofsubstanceradio.webs.com/
Women's Radio http://www.womensradio.com/
Radio Crystal Blue http://radiocrystalblue.com/
102.5x Internet radio
Celtic Roots radio http://celticrootsradio.com/
Unheard Radio (internet)
101.5 fm (New York)
102.7 fm (New York)
Muzak.com (for A.C Moore stores)
"Love Song To New Orleans"
The album was featured on WWOZ in New Orleans, Jazz88 in San Francisco and NBC's "Good Morning New Orleans"
Featured Artist, Feb 16,2010 MuzikReviews.com
5 songs in rotation on iRadio LA
Morgen La Civita - Lyrics/Vocals
Jake R. Tanner - Piano/Mixing
"Love Song to New Orleans" (2009)
Music For Troops "11.11.09"(2009)
"Songs For the Cure"(2010)
"Damitow Records Women's Charity Compilation for RAINN (2010)
"Yes! I Make a Difference Compilation"(2010)
From The Basement/Morgen La Civita (2010) (for NDSS.org)
Indie Girl Cd Compilation (2010)
Mobile 1 Network Cd Compilation (2010)
Solutions in Anarchy (Archive Productions 2011)
Vandala Music Concepts Compilation Cd (2010)
The DeMille Sampler Platter Cd (2010)
Marc Blackwell’s “Bring Me Trouble” Cd (2010) Background vocals
Songs for the Cure 2011
Old Souls (Cinderella records 2011 for NDSS.org)
Tribe Of Noise (in store compilation 2011)
Hot Girl Mix Tape (Victress Records, 2011)
Pick for Austin Charity Fundraiser for Suicide Prevention
Acoustic Roundtable Compilation Vol.1 (11-11-11)
Pick for Austin Charity Fundraiser for Suicide Prevention (2012)
Who I Am (The Piano Sessions) available now on iTunes
Several songs currently licensed by Crucial Music, "The Music Library" as well as "The Ledge" (a division of Man Made Music).
Into The Atmosphere 320
Pretty Marie (acoustic version)
One Year Later Morgen La Civita
Boy's Got Me Crazy
1) Who I Am (The Piano Sessions)
I Got Your Number
8) Maybe (The Piano Sessions)
What Love Can Do
Musical Notes: Morgen La Civita, "Who I Am"
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I've known Morgen La Civita for a few years now, through musical social sites as a musician and mor... I've known Morgen La Civita for a few years now, through musical social sites as a musician and more so as a friend. She has one of the most soulful and heartfelt voices I have ever heard. I own her first two albums "From the Basement" and "Old Souls", each being excellent albums, standing on their own as masterpieces sung by this grand voice.
Just over a week ago, she released "Who I Am"; a collection of solo piano pieces recorded live in studio. This release covers the finest songs I believe that she has written to date. I love to listen to Morgen from time to time, when I want to get away from it all and get lost in the stories that she paints with her lyrics, but with the release of "Who I Am", I get taken to a whole different and greater level of emotion.
From the title track at the start of this album ("Who I Am") all the way to the end with "There Are Angels", you are taken on a great journey of various joys, trials and tribulations through well crafted songs that make you sit back and take in all their glory in simplicity of a voice and a piano. I have a hard time latching on to a favorite only because I love every song on this release. What really takes me over the top is the piano playing, because it is so perfectly done for each track. Every accompaniment is absolutely beautiful and has an emotive quality all its own.
Listen to the lyrics to these tracks and take in the feelings that Morgen is pouring on the page as she is writing these songs. "Who I Am", "I'm Okay" and "Pretty Marie" make me well up every time I heard the original versions. Now they make me feel the lyrics deeper than before. I believe this change is brought about by the intimacy of singing with a solo piano.
This is the prettiest singing that I've heard in a long time. When Morgen sent me this album, I listened to it about 20 times that afternoon, and played it over and over in the car last week until I picked up a new album by Jennifer Thomas. Both different but beautiful releases. Today I've returned to Morgen's album, because it is resonating with how I feel at this moment. I absolutely love the lyrics to "Who I Am" because it's such a powerful song.
Songs That Rise Above
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I got word from Dean Brantley Taylor that he's got a new song out on the Chronic Fatigue Songs site...I got word from Dean Brantley Taylor that he's got a new song out on the Chronic Fatigue Songs site. This is a site for songs he wrote and produced specifically for CFS/FM/Lyme suffers and chronically ill people in general. The rest of ya'll can enjoy them, too, because life is difficult and sometimes a good song about difficulties lightens the weight of it all. The new song is called "Take Off."
I've enjoyed Taylor's music for a few years now and am happy to pass on this link to the new song. He wrote it with Morgen La Civita, whose strong voice gives no hint that she suffers from Fibromyalgia. She says, "While I was only diagnosed with Fibromyalgia in the summer of 2011, like most people with chronic pain conditions, I suspect I've had it for much longer than that. I got the usual "You're just a worrier" or "You just need more sleep" to the ever popular, yet unhelpful "Are you sure this isn't all in your mind?" I grew up with a mother that suffered from chronic conditions like CFS and Fibromyalgia and as a mother myself, I now see all the challenges that she had to cope with. People like us live for those rare and all too brief, pain free moments. And for me, music makes the time in between go by a little faster." (Morgen La Civita)
The song represents the dream of Morgen and Dean to"... untie the ropes of this illness so we can all "Take Off" I think it speaks to a universal yearning to be freed from the things that bind us in life.
There are now 10 songs on the Chronic Fatigue Songs site.
I thought this was a great opportunity not only to share the new song, but re-post two earlier reviews of Taylor's music that were posted on my old blog Chronically Inspired, and a guest blog he wrote himself.
...I'm also deeply grateful that we have the technology to share our music without having to be financed by music corporations. If these songs move you, consider buying them and supporting the people who are so generously bringing music to us. Enjoy the song and read on.
ANRGIRL SAYS Monthly A&R Critique August 2011
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I love Morgen's voice...smooth, smoky and silky at the same time. I feel like I'm listening to Carol...I love Morgen's voice...smooth, smoky and silky at the same time. I feel like I'm listening to Carole King round two when I hear this...with a little funky twist. There might even be a little Bonnie Raitt nod. I applaud Ms. Civita's skill on vocal delivery and well placed voice inflections at effective moments in the song. An artist of today who's tapping in to the vibey songwriting of the 70's. This recording is live - I would love to see where a song like this could go with a full recording. The outro could use improvement. I think it's a little lengthy when it progresses again at about 2:44. The song would end with more punch if it went to 3:00 at that 2:44 point and faded. It's better to have someone hitting replay to hear the ear candy again rather than sort of tiring their ear and it not ending with the "wanting more feel" which is what that little repetition area feels like at the moment...that move/edit would tighten the song. All and all, this is a truly talented songwriter who needs to continue this path. I'll be sure to follow her future songs as well.
WITTR Radio Network Blog
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This was a feature interview for WITTR Radio and Acoustic Roundtable. My segment comes in around min...This was a feature interview for WITTR Radio and Acoustic Roundtable. My segment comes in around minute 35.
Swinford Music Productions Jan/11 Interview
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SMP: What is the name of the first song you ever wrote? Tell me about it? Morgen: It was called "...SMP: What is the name of the first song you ever wrote? Tell me about it?
Morgen: It was called "If You Don't Want My Love, You Can Shove it Up Your Butt" I wrote it when I was a teenager living in Queens with my biological father.
One of the lines went "If you don't want my love..I ain't gonna throw a fit. ..I just wanna let you know one thing...Darling I was faking it"
His band let me sing it with them one night. It was fun because it was kind of a goof and people laughed, but not AT me..(at least I don't think so..hmmm)
SMP: When did you decide to get serious about getting into the music business?
Morgen: I'm not sure..I guess about 2 years ago when people started asking me to do things with them. I was like "Seriously? REALLY?"
I always loved to write, but was kind of excited to have a chance to actually sing stuff..
SMP: Who are some of your biggest musical influences and what is it about them that “speaks” to you?
Morgen: I love, love, LOVE Annie Lennox..In addition I always loved Peter Gabriel, Kate Bush, Joni Mitchell, Joan Osborne..and (how much room do I have because it's a LONG list!) Bonnie Raitt. I also loved all the old soul./blues singers like Mahalia Jackson, Billie Holiday and Nina Simone..
I love world instruments and percussion..all the artists I listed tend to use a lot in their music..Also, deep, sad and personal lyrics always move me..
SMP: If you could do a project with someone famous who would that be?
Morgen: I would love to do something with Annie Lennox or Joan Osborne..Each of them seem so down to earth and have such amazing styles..I could learn tons from something like that!
SMP: Of all the music you have created...What is YOUR favorite song?
Morgen: I think my favorite is "Joni Mitchell Memory" Not a soul knows what the heck I'm talking about, but I love it anyway..It's about my parents, and probably the first song I ever wrote all alone that was specifically the way I wanted it to be stylistically.
SMP: What do find to be most challenging about this industry?
Morgen: It's interesting you should ask that Stacy..I find that when people close to me are not supportive, or friends turn their back on you, it is almost impossible to keep the self esteem up. It's not the regular rejection you get 500 times a day from A&R types..It's the way a couple of things said (or unsaid) plant a seed of doubt in me. Then, I hide in bed for about a week until another, more stable music friend will peel back the stinky covers and say "Hey..whatchya doin' in there? You wanna come out and work on a song? Hmm..Hmmm.. Atta gir!l"
SMP:What is the most rewarding?
Morgen: The most rewarding is when you get picked for some acknowledgment that at the very beginning of my music ventures I would have thought were an impossible goal. It reaffirms that maybe I don't suck so much :)
SMP: Your successful moments in music....tell me about something that you are most proud of.
Morgen: I have to say that the very first Cd compilation I was invited to be on is the memory that makes me most proud. It was a contest for a place on a cd called "Love Song To New Orleans" I wrote "Pretty Marie" for that cd and it got picked. I was so happy! I don't think anything compares to those special sort of firsts..
SMP: You just got fired from the music business...but you are guaranteed success in any other job you choose to do. What are you going to be when you grow up?
Morgen: When I was a kid, I always wanted to be a lawyer. I never pursued it because I thought the system was corrupt and I could never really do any good. But I see now that sometimes you have to join a system that IS corrupt in order to CHANGE it.. That and I really like to argue..LOL
SMP: You have 1 chance to sell yourself to me with one of your songs. What song would best sum you up?
Morgen: I think I would pick "Pretty Marie". Since I was little, I was obsessed with the story of Marie Laveau. I think for me, she represented all that I thought women should (and all that I wanted to) be. Compassionate, strong, mysterious..and a little bit scary :) I thought she was the closest thing to a goddess or a saint, we have had here on earth in "modern" times. She was both the dark and the light for me..And as a little girl, who felt very small and powerless at the time, she gave me hope that we could all be strong if we just believed..and sometimes even if we didn't..
I'd like to thank Morgen for taking the time to do this interview. I highly suggest that you do yourself a favor and listen to Morgen's music. Its eclectic, its soulful, its the haunting soundtrack of how we feel, of our emotions, thoughts and desires.
100% of the proceeds from Morgen's CD sales goes to
www. NDSS.org so not only are you getting some damn good music, its going for a good cause.
Please visit http://www.morgenlacivita.com/ to purchase your copy of "Old Souls"
Also available on itunes and CDBaby.
"Old Souls" review by Hayden Thomas (UK)
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This is my review of Morgen La Civita’s new album, Old Souls. Morgen is a singer/songwriter from Ne...This is my review of Morgen La Civita’s new album, Old Souls. Morgen is a singer/songwriter from New Jersey, USA. Old Souls was released on October 31 via CdBaby. The proceeds will be going to the National Down Syndrome Society.
Old Souls is described as:
An eclectic blend of Blues, Soul and World music. Each storytelling track is a hypnotic and emotional ride for the listener.
Let us discover if this is true and a fair description of Old Souls.
On and On depicts a powerful story of images from the start. I can see the woman by the river giving birth and can see her blood mixing with the water. I can also hear the trees saying her name. The music is heavy, edgy and dark in a non-sinister way. Morgen’s voice sends chills through me, which I love to experience when listening to music because it means the artist has got into your soul.
My favourite part of On and On is the heavy music and the story. Morgen is a great storyteller. On and On is very spiritual and it creates images of women passing on their power to the next generation – great stuff!
Divine Grace is a very deep and meaningful song. It is like listening in on a confession. Morgen is speaking to Jesus. You can relate to Divine Grace because we all sit and question our actions and motives at times. Morgen’s voice is soft but solid and haunting in places. Morgen definitely has an edge to her voice, which I have fallen in love with. She speaks to your soul.
Whole Lotta of Trouble is lighter and more upbeat than the rest of Old Souls. It still has the great lyrics and story. Morgen still speaks to you even when she is singing something a bit more lighthearted. I think we can all relate to meeting that lover who is nothing but trouble. We cannot live without them but it is hell to live with them.
Whole Lotta Trouble is fun, I like this song, and I think you will. The music that kicks in at 03.26 is great and sounds like a dance mix is about to start. If Morgen ever decided to remix Whole Lotta Trouble, it would be a definite hit.
Grandmother’s Song transports me to Elizabethan England despite the lyrics mentioning the American South. I can picture Queen Elizabeth I and her courtiers all sat listening to Morgen performing this rather Celtic little number. Grandmother’s Song is vocal dominant with Morgen’s voice taking centre stage. Yet again, Morgen tells a great story with her beautiful haunting sound. I am sure Queen Elizabeth I would have approved. Grandmother’s Song is probably more for the ladies.
925 makes me think of India and beautiful Indian women dancing in the way only they can. The music is fantastic. I truly love the Indian sound. Morgen’s voice is subtle and soft throughout 925. Morgen has opted to allow the music to take centre stage on this one and it really works for me. There is definitely something sexy about 925, not in a sleazy way but sensual. 925 is all about the music and feelings it creates within.
Pretty Marie closes Old Souls on a beautiful note. It is such a gentle song and sends me into deep thought. Morgen’s voice is simply exquisite and perfect. Morgen’s unique haunting sound adds to the emotional sensation of Pretty Marie.
This is an acoustic track and the simple music adds to the whole feeling of depth, sadness and longing. Pretty Marie is clearly very personal to Morgen and it sends chills through me. There is a deep and real story here and I wish I knew more about it.
Pretty Marie is a favourite of mine and I have listened to it repeatedly. Give it a listen and I promise you will have it on repeat.
Every so often, I am fortunate enough to review an album that is rare, outstanding, flawless and stunning. Old Souls is one such album. Morgen’s voice is haunting, dark, beautiful, sexy and bewitching. Morgen makes you want to listen to her and you simply enjoy the experience. What I especially love about Old Souls is the depth and great lyrics. Morgen’s lyrics are exceptional and so rare these days. You are told a story, you are taken to a different world, and that is what I call true artistic talent.
So, do I think the description for Old Souls is fair and accurate? Without doubt, whoever wrote that description knows what he or she is talking about. Old Souls truly is hypnotic and emotional for the listener.
I often write about the chill I get when I hear a great song. Old Souls created that sensation on nearly every track, which makes this album unique and a first for me. You do not even have to ask, I recommend Old Souls without any doubt or question. Go out and get your own copy and embark on a great spiritual journey. I promise you will not be disappointed
Old Souls review from Wildy's World
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Morgen La Civita - Old Souls 2010, Morgen La Civita Old Souls opens with "On And On", a da...Morgen La Civita - Old Souls
2010, Morgen La Civita
Old Souls opens with "On And On", a dark and mysterious rocker with elements of Middle Eastern music and bluegrass pick work. This catchy tune is sort of a "witchy woman" for the 21st century, and is a great bit of songwriting with a catchy mien. "What Love Can Do" has a funky groove and features La Civita in great voice. It may not turn out to be a fan favorite, but survives nicely on La Civita's salesmanship as a performer. "Who Is This Woman" is an interesting exploration of how we often lose sight of who we are as we grow. La Civita crafts a lush and lovely melody while reminding us that often the child we remember is not the adult we become. "Divine Grace" is a prayer and message in song; dark and hopeful and featuring an intriguing intellectual approach.
With a solid start, La Civita struggles a bit the rest of the way. Things get slow until she breaks out with the funky and vibrant "Whole Lotta Trouble". This is a great bit of danceable songwriting and worth checking out. "Grandmother's Song" makes the jump from From The Basement and is as charming as it was the first time around. "925" falls flat, but La Civita recovers to close with a live version of "Pretty Marie" (also from From The Basement.
Morgen La Civita has a voice that's full of context and character. You might not describe it as pretty so much as full of a regal beauty. Like royalty, there's a distance between La Civita and the listener, but her performances are informed and heartfelt in spite of that slight separation. When La Civita is on her game the songwriting is above average, and she can occasionally save a song on the strength of her egalitarian grace, but a handful of songs on Old Souls seems uninspired. This is one of those occasions when a highly above average EP gets turned in an average or slightly above full-length album.
Rating: 3 Stars (Out of 5)
Learn more about Morgen La Civita at www.morgenlacivita.com or www.facebook.com/morgen.lacivita. Old Souls is available digitally from Amazon.com, iTunes and CDBaby.
Singer/songwriter and voiceover artist Morgen La Civita returned on Halloween this year with her second album, Old Souls. The effort finds La Civita expanding on the sound she debuted on her first EP From The Basement, showing growth as both a songwriter and lyricist.
Vents Magazine Interview
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How did you started with all this?? I have always been interested in music! But, I started songwrit...How did you started with all this??
I have always been interested in music! But, I started songwriting professionally when I met my husband, Jake R. Tanner. He is a mix engineer, mostly in Latin Music, but over the past few years, has gotten more involved in Rock, Pop and Blues.
What's the message to transmit with your music??
I think that I mostly try to explore the darker or unspoken parts of myself in my music. I guess what I am trying to get across is that we all have a side to us that we don't really like to show the world. But, by opening ourselves up, we can improve our relationships with others.
What's your method at the time of writting a song??
It's funny, because so many of my songs pop into my head fully formed..usually while I am sleeping..Then, I scramble to get it all down before I forget; much like trying to remember a dream. The longer I "awake" the further from my memory it becomes.
Which is your music influences??
I am a huge fan of Annie Lennox. I think she is a wonderful lyricist! I love artists that use world instruments in their music..Like Peter Gabriel & Joan Osborne. I also love Indian music and am a big fan of Anoushka Shankar.
What plans do you have for the future??
Right now, I am feverishly trying to wrap up my 2nd album. It is called "Old Souls" and will be released in October. After that, I have a lot of collaborative projects to finish up.
Which has been the funniest prank you have been or took part while on tour or after a show??
I have paralyzing stage fright. It's awful. When I see so many people watching me, I completely forget all the words to my own songs. Once, I had to make notes on index cards and tape them to the ceiling. I kept looking up and someone yelled out "Is it going to rain??" Horrifying!
If you were stranded in the middle of nowhere after a show or while on tour. The help is 65 miles away from where you and your band (If any) are, ¿Who would you send to look for help? And if while the rest wait, there's no food and the only way to feed yourself is by eating each other, ¿Who would you eat first?
Well, firstly I would eat my husband, he would want it that way :) Although most of us have some meat on our bones, so we are all fair game I suppose! As far as how I would call for help, I would shut my eyes very, very tight and bang out a drum pattern on the trees until the Loa showed up to save us :)
Which country you would love to play?
I would love to go to India and team up with some musicians there. I am completely in love with Indian music, food and culture.
With which bands you would love to share stage??
I would probably faint if I ever really had the chance to play with some of my idols..but, I would love to play with Joan Osborne. She is so Earthy and real and seems like she would be a lot of fun to hang out with after the show!
Are you OK, with the direction the band is going actually?
I am still trying to define myself, stylistically. I am always trying to blend several styles of music into one. Sometimes that makes it hard to be heard by a broader audience. I think that I will never be really satisfied and will always be trying to improve, change and perfect our direction.
Check out more of this artist by going to http://morgenlacivita.com/
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Morgen La Civita-From the Basement
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Morgen La Civita: From The Basement Descriptions like “adult contemporary” and “world” don't usuall...Morgen La Civita: From The Basement
Descriptions like “adult contemporary” and “world” don't usually peak the interest of a generation hanging on to its youth, resisting the acceptance that certain formative songs of adolescence are now considered “classics.” Well, much the same way Ani DiFranco changed impressions of folk music, Morgen La Civita adds edge and grit to the world of what might be considered “adult contemporary.”
“The Difference” shows Morgen to be a songwriter with a tap into the market of independent and strong women, without the tendency to take away from femininity. The metaphor comparing a woman to a math equation defies the cliché of pop singers whining about wanting to be treated like more than just a girl. The song, “Joni Mitchell Memory” will have listeners googling “Joni Mitchell”; here's a start: http://jonimitchell.com
“Dark Water Lullaby” and “Pretty Marie” target the world music genre with a bullet headed straight into the heart of deep blues tunes. The quiet dynamic of the vocals and piano melody meld into the background effects of thunder and echoing harmonies. Through listening to the lyrics for “Dark Water Lullaby” one could envision a multitude of themes and ideas from child abuse to natural disasters. Morgen gives us a glimpse into her mindset with the video:
“What's Inside” stirs with the undercurrent of drumming and other instruments one would not expect to find on regular afternoon “adult” radio. Morgen conquers the notion that girls can't rock without becoming some cheesy cliché crooning about sappy shit or strung out in leather like an 80s throwback. Her lyrics speak honestly and come across like a story being told around a campfire where accompanying instruments dance in the shadows of the flames. The irony of lyrics about hunters singing “Kyrie Eleison" and the idea that “we never really know what's inside” until we are left alone to our own devices without the necessary comforts of so-called civilization. Dive, head first, into the debut album, From The Basement, released in February 2010 (and feel good about yourself because all proceeds go to www.ndss.com National Down Syndrome Society), and get excited for the July 2010 release of If You Like This Sort of Thing. Fans of smooth music with edgy ideas, in the style of Ani Difranco at a summer camp sleep away, will certainly enjoy Morgen La Civita. Check her out online at: www.WorldMusicSoulMission.com
Target Audience Magazine/June 2010
Wildy's World July,2010
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Morgen La Civita - From The Basement 2010, Morgen La Civita New Jersey's Morgen La Civita has be...Morgen La Civita - From The Basement
2010, Morgen La Civita
New Jersey's Morgen La Civita has been all over the airwaves for years as a voice-over artist. More recently she's taken to her home recording studio and begun a solo career as a singer-songwriter. With the help of GRAMMY Award winning Engineer (and husband) Jake R. Tanner, La Civita recorded and released her debut album, From The Basement in February of 2010. LaCivita mines the depths of human experience with an eye to opening the eyes of all who will listen to the plight of the forgotten, the lost and the unheard.
From The Basement opens with "Who I Am", a piano ballad lamenting a partner's inability to accept her for whom she really is. It begins as a moment of confusion over what to do but quickly grows into strength, telling him he can come along for the ride or she'll go her own way. The song highlights LaCivita's lush and earthy voice, a gorgeous instrument that cavorts with the piano in quiet, dulcet tones. "Joni Mitchell Memory" pays tribute to one of La Civita's bigger influences, sounding like a session cut from early in Mitchell's career in the process. Vocally La Civita will remind you at times of early Joan Osborne (in her pre-"One Of Us" days), and that comparison is very apt here.
L aCivita moves for more complicated matters with "Dark Water Lullaby", a deep and lovely ballad with fathomable meaning and a stark musical beauty that won't be denied. "What's Inside" is a morality lesson in looking beyond the surface to see what's inside. La Civita infuses middle eastern sounds here to create a sound that's both lovely and haunting. La Civita gets into some of the darker aspects of life on songs such as "Hush", "Pretty Marie" and "There Are Angels", a triumvirate at the heart of the album that take some stamina as a listener. The messages are in turn provocative and inspiring, but the musical landscape remains enough unchanged as to challenge the listener to keep up. This trend continues through much of the rest of the album although to lesser degrees. From The Basement closes with "Maybe", a song of cautious hope regarding a relationship that perhaps does not appear strong. The melody here is beautiful, among the finest on the album. La Civita is in her best voice here as well.
Morgen La Civita lives so far out of the box of popular music you'll wonder where it went. From The Basement is a leap of faith, both for La Civita and for the listener. If you can immerse yourself in her tales the reward is significant. La Civita writes in a solitary style that would benefit from a bit more collaboration, but her sense of melody is strong and her ability to craft a tale is well documented here. Where From The Basement falls short at times is a lack of dynamic variation. La Civita mixes and blends styles to her own liking in adept fashion, but the tone of her stories and the lack of distinct highs and lows make it harder to sink into the songs and stay there for the full song cycle. Nevertheless, it's apparent that Morgen La Civita is on to something here. She included a bonus track, "The Difference" from her upcoming album If You Like This Sort Of Thing. While one song doesn't tell about dynamic or pacing of an album, it's clear that in the six months since the release of From The Basement La Civita already shows the beginnings of progressive development as an artist. The future should be interesting.
Learn more about Morgen La Civita at http://www.morgenlacivita.com/ or www.facebook.com/morgen.lacivita. Sales of From The Basement benefit the National Down Syndrome Society (http://www.ndss.org/). From The Basement is a digital-only release. Downloads are available from Amazon, CDBaby and iTunes.
Women of Substance Radio/ Artist Suggestion of the Day
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Today's Indie Artist Suggestion: Morgen La Civita Posted on June 4, 2010 at 3:21 AM Hear Morg... Today's Indie Artist Suggestion: Morgen La Civita
Posted on June 4, 2010 at 3:21 AM
Hear Morgen's song "Joni Mitchell Memory" online today on our Blues Show (5 PM ET, 2 PM PT) at www.WomenOfSubstanceRadio.com. Morgen meshes Blues, Americana, Folk and World sounds to create a musical style that is truly one of a kind. The atmosphere in many of her songs transports listeners to the deep and mysterious Bayou. Her passionate and gravely vocal delivery is like a shot of Southern Comfort with mystical presence. Morgen has a down-to-earth personality and is driven by a social consciousness that defines her music and her career.
Progression Magazine April, 2010
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Total rating refers to the sum total in the four categories. The maximum possible rating is 16. ... Total rating refers to the sum total in the four categories. The maximum possible rating is 16.
MORGEN LA CIVITA
From the Basement
2010 (CD, 42:24); INDEPENDENT RELEASE
SOUND 3 COMPOSITION 4
MUSICIANSHIP 3 PERFORMANCE 4
TOTAL RATING 14
Morgen LaCivita is a New Jersey-based singer-songwriter whose classically earthy voice recalls greats like Bonnie Raitt, Nina Simone, Chi Coltrane and Roberta Flack. She’s a nice mix of soul singer and introspective balladeer whose strong compositions follow suit.
There’s nothing overtly progressive here, though most of these songs have a rich emotional core amidst mixed-and-matched stylistic motifs. This comes through strongly on the likes of “Who I Am,” with the vocalist’s personal insight underscored by stark production and solo piano. “Joni Mitchell Memory” is dedicated to another of LaCivita’s key influences and sounds like a lost track from Mitchell’s Blue period. The dobro guitar accompaniment and solemn mood here suggest a Delta blues meets Celtic vibe. “Dark Water Lullaby” is hauntingly surreal, with a tribal feel signified by varied percussion and exotic rhythms. “What’s Inside” swirls in a milieu of intoxicating trip-hop grooves and beats. “Pretty Marie” also crosses multi-cultural boundaries, blending Eastern vibes (tabla) with a spooky voodoo veneer. This is music for your mind, spirit and soul. -- Eric Harabadian
Unsigned Underground Feb, 2010
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"When you listen to Morgen La Civita’s music the first thing you ask yourself is ‘Where is this girl..."When you listen to Morgen La Civita’s music the first thing you ask yourself is ‘Where is this girl coming from?’. The music is hard to pigeon-hole and presents a challenge to the listener when trying to divine the source of her inspiration. Americana? Yes. Blues? Yes. Popular song? Yes. Middle Eastern? Yes. Morgen definitely presents us with a melting pot of styles and influences nicely tied together with a sultry voice and excellent production value".
-Darryl Gregory "Unsigned Underground" Episode 29 Feb, 18, 2010 http://www.bluecavestudios.com/wordpress/2010/02/18/episode-29-interview-with-morgen-lacivita/
My Dad Rocks- UK Review- May,2010
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For centuries music has been used to protest, raise awareness or change attitudes. Lampooning Politi...For centuries music has been used to protest, raise awareness or change attitudes. Lampooning Politicians, stopping wars, promoting freedom or protecting the environment have all had their fair share of musical sponsors.
Morgan La Civita is a little different . She an unsigned artist with a home studio where she writes, records and mixes all her music with her Grammy winning husband Jake R. Tanner. Her debut album "From The Basement" was released in February 2010 and all proceeds from the album go to www.Ndss.org (National Down Syndrome Society) - a worthwhile, if not particularly fashionable, cause.
Her fusion of Americana, Folk, Blues and World Music, which she uses to tell the musical equivalent of camp-fire ghost stories, gives her an edgy and unique sound. Please check it out on her MySpace page and if you like it buy the album here. If you don't just buy it anyway - it's all in a good cause.
Look for her new album "If You Like This Sort of Thing", scheduled for release July31,2010 with all the proceeds, once again, going to NDSS.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 May 2010 15:03
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