Become a Fan
At the age of 13, Vicksburg native William Michael Morgan is living the celebrity life that many years his senior could only imagine. A country singer that is influenced by the sounds of Tim McGraw, George Jones, Charlie Pride and Hank Williams Sr., he has gotten his own airplay on River 101 FM, V105 FM and 1490 AM in Vicksburg as well as WKDW in Staunton, VA as well as internationally on internet radio including England and Canada. His songs True Blue Cowboy & Motherload have earned him respect from those in the music industry and he has received accolades for his skills including winning the 2006 North American County Music Association International Male Vocalist of the Year and the USA World Showcase TV Viewer Award with an astounding 2 million votes! All of this and he is just began the seventh grade this year.
Looking at his accomplishments thus far, it should come as no surprise that when nominations began for the 1st Mississippi’s Best Awards, the fans of William Michael Morgan continued their support of him giving him over 2200 votes in four categories: Best Country Singer, Overall Entertainer, Breakout Recording Artist and Best Website. As a presenter, performer and leading contender going into the event, we talked about how he feels about the success he has achieved and what keeps him grounded.
On Friday, September 29, 2006 the Planning Committee of the Mississippi’s Best Awards will be holding a news conference at the Shoney’s in Vicksburg (3316 Pemberton Square Blvd.) recognizing William Michael Morgan’s achievements in the state with the event’s first monthly HOMETOWN HERO AWARD as well as discussing the upcoming awards program that will be on Saturday, October 28, 2006 in Jackson, MS.
Q: When did you discover your love for music?
A: Well my dad has always sang to me, but I started at 5 and was onstage at 6
Q: Did you find it difficult for people to take you serious because of your age?
A: Yes I did! And still do. But now with all the big shows I do and having songs on radio it’s not as bad as it was 3 or 4 years ago. We are now booking events from rodeos to Las Vegas shows. So I am finally getting taken serious.
Q: I know you have gained national recognition for your talent and have had the privilege to meet several celebrities in the business. Can you tell us some of the people you have met and what it was like for you?
A: I guess the best one I got to meet was Dierks Bentley 2 years ago. I actually got to spend the day with him and his band. They taught me so much about how a big show is setup and ran. That night I got to hang out with the tour manager in the sound booth to see what it is like to run the sound equipment. I have met so many big stars like Whispering Bill Anderson to Rhonda Vincent. Just to meet someone like Bill Anderson brings chills to you. I also met Tracy Lawrence at the Dixie Nationals last year and after the show I got to play and sing with the band at the bus. That was amazing.
Q: Who have you performed with that was just a life-changing experience?
A: Well I have two of them: First would be being invited to be on a cd called Country From the Heart with Ronnie McDowell and a group of well known stars. This cd will have one of my original songs on it called Pirate on the Mississippi, and it should be released this year so look for it soon. Next would be the first time I got to do a duet with my dad on stage. He’s not what some would consider a big star but he’s a star to me just the same.
Q: William, you have managed to build quite a following for yourself, especially online. What do you contribute that to?
A: I have to give credit for an awesome web master and a strong street team that gets the word out everyday. I couldn’t do it without my friends. My record label, my producer, Lee Bogan of Nashville, my song writers and co-writers all make sure everything runs as smooth as possible.
Q: One of the events you have coming up is the 1st Mississippi's Best Awards on Saturday, October 28, 2006. There you will be not only presenting an award but performing as well. When it comes to being from Mississippi, do you feel as though people on the outside are getting a true picture of what we are doing here?
A: Yes I do. With the national exposure that this event is receiving I feel the word is out that Mississippi has some great talent and should not be overlooked. It’s like coming home from a long trip. There is no place like home!
Q: How do you think the Mississippi's Best Awards, where people in various areas will be recognized, can help our perception?
A: Well it shows Mississippi has talent in so many areas from arts to writers and musicians. It is great for the country to notice the great artist of past and future. I consider myself the future of country music from Mississippi. We have some fantastic talent from this state Charlie Pride, Morgan Freeman, Oprah Winfrey, Faith Hill and so many others. Mississippi has had some great artists from here and there are so many more waiting for the world to see them
Q: You are leading in the nominations for four categories that evening including best website, overall entertainer and best country singer--- in fact beating other recognized individuals such as David Banner, Bobby Rush, Charley Pride and Faith Hill. Is there ever a time when you are surprised at how people seem to rally around you and your music?
A: Yes every time I am involved with anything where voting is involved. Like when I was on national TV for the USA World Showcase in Las Vegas and we set an all time record for the most viewer votes we received over 2 million votes. I thank everyone who jumps in and votes for me from my heart
Q: Which award would you be the most excited to win?
A: Breakout Recording Artist of the Year because unfortunately Mississippi does not have as many places to perform for someone my age. So I’m not seen as much here as I am in other states so this award means more will have a chance to hear me on radio and maybe see me on TV.
Q: Other than the awards show, what do you have in the works?
A: We are adding dates everyday from Las Vegas to Arkansas a few local shows are coming as well. You can see my tour dates on either my website www.wmmorgan.net or myspace www.myspace.com/wmmorgan. I am in the studio a lot working on my next cd and trying to get booked more in Mississippi.
Q: For those who are interested in pursuing a career in the music industry, what advice would you give them?
A: Stay humble to your roots never give up and practice ever day. The dream is there if you reach hard for it.