From an old beat up ball cap, to a napkin from your first ice cream date, we often find ourselves holding onto all these ordinary items filled with so much meaning. For anyone else, that dull brown rock doesn't mean shit, but to me it was where I first kissed her. Over time, the person who made these items so valuable suddenly vanishes into thin air and we are stuck holding onto a box filled with useless shit. But we find ourselves not being able to let go because... well, "just in case" that special someone might come back. A concept so many of us have felt, and Morgan Johnston puts these emotions into a beautiful song we didn't know we needed. (P.S. - Hey Megan, get over yourself and throw that box of shit away... Chad isn't coming back. He's currently passed out in the bushes in front of his frat house. It's not worth it.)
Get To Know Morgan
"Perfect. So I'm originally from Cape Cod, Massachusetts and both my parents are professional dog trainers. My dad is also a professional jouster, something that he took on later in his life. I grew up traveling around the country performing the national anthem - that started at a young age. I kind of knew I could sing when I was little, but being able to sing the national anthem kept my mind on music. When I was 13 years old I picked up a guitar and started playing and writing my own songs. They were so bad, but I would play them at open mics. Again, they were really bad, but I had enough courage to keep playing them. Then I got out of it for a while. I would play in my bedroom, but stopped playing out when I went to college because I had my dreams set on being a horse trainer. When I was a freshman in college, my best friend started dating Brett Young. At the time, 'Sleep Without You" hadn't gone to radio yet, but he had signed a record deal and was about to go to radio. It was a unique time in my career, because for the longest time I never really thought music could be a career. I thought it was insane to even try and pursue music, but seeing what Brett was doing gave me the motivation to go for it. I first went to Nashville for a vacation in August of 2016 with my friend Madison, Brett and some other people in his camp. It was really fun and I got to see some amazing music as well as watch this precious moment in Brett's career and the way it went down. He was nice enough to hook me up to play Whiskey Jam when I was there again. I was so bad and can't believe he went out on a limb for me. At the time I didn't know what Whiskey Jam was, but instantly got this weird boost of confidence. I took a leap of faith and dropped out of college. Two months later I lived here."
The Rising Women Of Country Music Are SO BACK
Halle Kearns, Leah Marie Mason, Carter Faith, Kaylin Roberson, are just a few names that are highlighting the amazing young women in Country Music. Morgan Johnston is right alongside these girls, ready to make a name for herself and to be playing sold out shows in the near future. Morgan's vocal ability is smooth, vibrant and turns heads no matter where you're at. Her ability to take some lines, tell a story and make you feel something goes to show the talent this young lady is able to put on display. I damn near almost had a tear in my eye the first time I heard "Just in Case". 'Bout to have me crying in the club right now. Top to bottom, Morgan has released stellar songs and keeps the hype rolling with this latest hit. Not only can Morgan belt out some tunes, she's a hell of a songwriter. Morgan has co-written "Shoes to Fill" by Halle Kearns, "Let You Go" by Noah West and "You Still Keep Me Up" by SixForty1, amongst others. Big future for Ms. Johnston.
Inspiration Behind "Just in Case"
Written By: Morgan Johnston, Kyle Schlienger & Ian McConnell
"I wrote this with Ian McConnell and Kyle Schlienger, who was actually the second person I met in Nashville. I was introduced to him by Brett (Young). Kyle wrote "In Case You Didn't Know", which is an incredible song. He has taught me so much about songwriting. This song in particular. I was going through a break up and thought I was doing well and was over it. He was back home, but there were times I would find myself having these strange moments where I just couldn’t go through with throwing away his old shit ... like a note. This got me thinking and I had a conversation with a friend of mine. I told her "I swear I'm holding onto these things just in case he comes back". I wrote that down and it ended up being the foundation for this amazing song. The song started just being about physical things, but Kyle was like "what if we make it, like I keep my love for you just in case you come back?". We were like "hell yeah! That's it! That's it!". We finished “Just In Case” all in one session. That was like 2 years ago. I'm so ridiculously over that guy now, but I loved this song and knew it was relatable. I was just waiting for the right time to put it out and this year felt right."
Q & A With Morgan Johnston
Q: What was that "light bulb" moment you knew you wanted to pursue music?
A: "Yeah, like I mentioned, it was definitely while visiting Nashville for the first time and playing Whiskey Jam. There is so much magic here. I'm a big cheese ball, but there is something about coming here. You could go up to anyone and say "I want to be an astronaut" and they would be like "that's so cool". I just didn't grow up like that. The people around me were always so supportive, but I just didn't have the safety to dream that big. I feel the magic here - where people dream big and chase their dreams. You find amazing support here that gives you confidence. So Whiskey Jam and just getting the feel for this place was a life changing “light bulb” moment. I called my dad the next day and told him I was dropping out of school."
Q: What are some songs and/or albums that sparked your love for Country Music?
A: "I used to listen to Shania Twain obsessively. Shania Twain, that whole entire record with "Man! I Feel Like a Woman!". I think it was titled "Come On Over". When I first came to town, Maren's "Hero" album was huge for me as a songwriter. Lori McKenna's record "The Bird & the Rifle" was so inspirational to me. Overall, kind of a melting pot of songs that sparked my love of country music. Shania was like the first to do what they called Pop Country, which is funny because it doesn't seem pop anymore. Also the songwriting of Lori McKenna and the badass edge of Maren Morris."
Q: Most embarrassing moment?
A: "I was having a hard time with this because I feel like I do embarrassing things all the time. But, one that sticks out and has been hard to forget all these years, was when I was in 3rd grade. There was this kid I was in love with named Tyler Bennett. I wanted him to be impressed, so for show and tell everyone usually brings a paper they drew or a trophy. But I thought it was a good idea to make up my own dance to Kelly Clarkson's song "Miss Independent". I bought a new red dress and danced around in circles for 30 minutes! Everyone made fun of me for it endlessly."
Q: Favorite thing about Nashville?
A: "The people is definitely #1 for me. There is always something to do, which is really cool. There is always live music, so being a songwriter I especially love it. You get to see so many historical things and a lot of what is behind the scenes. You can have a favorite song and not know who wrote it or the history behind it. But then you go to a bar and hear the person who wrote it, play it live. You thought it was Luke Bryan, nope... it was random “Joe Schmo” from Arkansas who wrote it about his ex-wife. That's what I love about Nashville.”