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pj morton

New Orleans' PJ Morton is a versatile keyboardist, songwriter, and producer known for his own pop and R&B albums, as well as his studio work for other performers. Emerging in the early 2000s, Morton gained early notice working with artists like Kierra "Kiki" Sheard, DeWayne Woods, and Musiq Soulchild before issuing his own albums, such as 2013's Grammy-nominated New Orleans and 2017's Grammy-winning "Gumbo". allmusic

The self-taught pianist, began his musical journey as a child in his church’s choir. “I remember my first solo because it was pressure; my father [Paul Morton] was the pastor. So [he’s] like, You can’t embarrass me,’” Morton recalls. “I was rehearsing with the choir director… and my dad was like, ‘Show your emotions, son… you got to almost be crying.’ I probably use that to this day… and always connect to emotion in song. I remember that clearly.” rollingstone

Morton’s first tour came immediately after graduating from Morehouse College when he was invited to hit the road with Erykah Badu. “I was a huge fan and that was my first time on a tour bus… I couldn’t ask for a better tour because Erykah is a vet. It was such a great example and set me on my path. I actually started writing my first album while I was on tour with Erykah. It changed everything.” rollingstone

Along the way, Morton relocated to Los Angeles. In 2010, he joined Maroon 5 as a performing keyboardist and background vocalist and has contributed to many of the group's albums, including 2012's "Overexposed", 2014's "V", and 2017's "Red Pill Blues.". The work didn't slow his solo career; he signed to Young Money and released the album "New Orleans "-- featuring guest appearances from Stevie Wonder, Busta Rhymes, and Maroon 5's Adam Levine -- in May 2013. The album's single "Only One" earned him a Grammy nomination for Best R&B Song. allmusic

Despite his success, Morton grew dissatisfied with Los Angeles, and eventually moved back to New Orleans, where he founded his own Morton Records label. In 2017, he returned with his fifth solo album, "Gumbo", which included appearances by Pell, BJ the Chicago Kid, and the Hamiltones. Also included on the album was a cover of the Bee Gees' "How Deep Is Your Love," which won the Grammy for Best Traditional R&B Performance. Morton re-created the album live in 2018 and released it as "Gumbo Unplugged (Live)", which featured guests like Lecrae and Yebba. The holiday-themed "Christmas with PJ Morton" followed in November of that year. In 2019 Morton released "Paul", an album with socially conscious undertones that featured guest appearances from Rapsody, Tobe Nwigwe and Jazmine Sullivan. The effort was nominated for best R&B performance for the 2020 Grammys, and was one of three nominations Morton received that year. allmusic

I've listened to this album so many times! It's a timeless masterpiece:

I can keep going, but yeah, I love all of his music and you should check it out.


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