Interview: Chris Morton

Apr 12 2012

Scotland's Chris Morton is a worship leader who's recent single 'You Never Give Up' was featured on last year's Soul Survivor live album 'We Are The Free'. LTTM caught up with Chris to find out how he got started in worship music and where he's heading next.

For those who haven't heard of you before, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got involved in making music?

Hello everyone, my name is Chris Morton I am 25 and was born and raised in Aberdeen, Scotland. I have a beautiful wife and a young son. My family are massively into music and have always been heavily involved in Church. I grew up regularly attending Church and got involved in playing the worship band. At the age of 11 I lead worship in City Church Aberdeen, the church I attend, for the first time and have been involved in the worship there ever since.

Just in the last few years I have started to look at writing worship songs as a way of expressing something fresh and from my heart in a way that I could not find in the songs I would use. I then started regularly meeting up with a couple of friends and we would pray, worship and write together. Writing worship songs is something that I have realised I have a great passion for, a great passion for writing good songs speaking truth in an accessible and fresh way. This is what we work really hard to try and achieve in our song writing.

Your song 'You Never Give Up' appeared on the recent Soul Survivor live album 'We Are The Free', how did that come about?

We had a conference at our church in Aberdeen, Mike Pilavachi from Soul Survivor was one of the speakers at the conference. I was leading worship and used the song in our worship time. Mike spoke to me afterwards and felt the song was really powerful and wanted a copy to take home with him to Soul Survivor. I quickly recorded a rough demo of the song and sent it to him along with the chord sheet and it has been picked up and introduced there and used at their event they have in the summer. From there it was chosen to be on the live release from the event.

Chris Morton - You Never Give UpYou recently released that song as a single yourself - can you tell us about the inspiration behind the song?

The initial inspiration for the song came from looking around my church at the people there whose lives had been completely transformed from real darkness into God’s wonderful light. The fact that God is interested in everyone, no matter what, and never gives up on us. This is true for each one of us and realising that completely changed me! Then in a personal time of worship in my room with my guitar I just started singing out some lines and these were the original lines of the song. After some frantic scribbling the next step was to take it and show it to the guys I write with and then we started to think and pray and work through what the song was really about and what we could sing that best served the initial inspiration.

Are you planning to record an album in the future as well?

We recorded a few other tracks at the same time we recorded You Never Give Up and hope to release them at some point in the future yes. My heart for worship and the worship songs that I write is the local Church. I think it is so important to get stuck into your local church and serve in whatever way you feel called to. If the opportunity came along for me to get more studio time to record more songs then yes I would love to record an album.

What's your song writing process?

It will start with a bit of inspiration, this can either come in a time of worship or something I have read or heard. That thought will then run round my head for ages until it starts to form a line or 2, then I will start to sing it through in the car or wherever until it starts to take shape as a song. Then out comes the guitar as I try to construct verses & a chorus & tags - something that would resemble a song. Once I get to a stage where I feel it works, I take it to friends of mine as I mentioned before and we rip it apart and put it back together again adding and taking lines away through this process until we feel we get to a point where it serves what we feel we are trying to achieve.

If you could work with any song writer, who would it be and why?

It would have to be Steven Curtis Chapman, I grew up listening to all his albums and love his style of writing songs and how every album seems to feel fresh and relevant. Working with him would be a real dream come true for me!

How would you describe your style of music and what are your influences?

Rocky Pop probably, influences - Steven Curtis Chapman, John Mayer, Dave Matthews Band

In your opinion, what makes the perfect worship song?

I love big celebration-type worship songs, songs that sing about what God has done for us. I love songs that sing to God. I appreciate that we need a balance in our worship between songs that sing to God and songs of response. But I love singing great songs, speaking of the amazing truths of what God has done for each and every one of us. The language is important too I feel, it needs to be accessible to people with no church background at all.

You're stuck on an island, it's hot, you only have enough battery life left to listen to one song on your mp3 player. What track is it?

Slow Dancing In A Burning Room - John Mayer

What does the next year hold for Chris Morton?

A year of serving in my local church, working hard to write and record new songs and hopefully getting more music out for people to listen to.

For more about Chris Morton visit Fair Isle Records

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