1977 (age 40)
Mobile, Mobile County, Alabama, United States
For Eliot Morris - whose Universal Records debut, Whats Mine Is Yours, ripples with the kind of sure-footed songcraft of an artist blooming at precisely the right time - maybe the series of hurdles the Alabama native endured to deliver his major label inaugural happened for a reason. "Im kind of used to delayed gratification," he quips, with Morris pointing out that growing up as one of six kids in his parents Mobile, Alabama household, they always werent the first family to upgrade the latest technological device. Not because they were poor - but as Morris puts it: "My dad wasnt what youd call an early adapter. He believed in delaying that hunger for material stuff and would have us, instead, explore what was around us. I think that it taught me the importance of communicating with the tools you have."
The lesson in resiliency has paid off, with the grounded Morris pivoting from Mobile, to Auburn University (where he graduated with a degree in Finance) to Nashville and eventually, to Birmingham, Alabama. He diligently honed his songwriting along the way, but also experienced the typical drizzle of record company-stutter steps (one self-titled under-the-radar release), and other unpredictable delays (he was originally signed to a subsidiary of Universal that folded before they released his album), that fortunately, never seemed to dampen the buzz about the singer/songwriters immense talent, or his unique perspective about arriving at his appointed destination.
After moving from Nashville to Birmingham, Morris got to work, exploring the local musical terrain with a renewed gusto, and writing and performing with renewed inspiration. Before long he scored a development deal with Universals, now defunct, Strummers Records. And after trying, unsuccessfully, to put a band (Parkers Back) around his existing songs, Eliot would make permanent his solo status building on the southern mystique, and creating a slow-burning buzz through CD sharing and a constant blur of touring (both local haunts and coveted opening slots and side stages for John Mayer, Counting Crows and James Taylor among others). Strummer would eventually die an unfortunate death but Universal saw something special and decided that Eliot was an artist that needed to be heard.
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