Maren Morris announced her depature from country music along with the release of her new, two-track EP “The Bridge.”
This release, however, is more than just a musical endeavor; it symbolizes her departure from the world of country music that catapulted her to stardom. In her own words, Morris shared with Los Angeles Times, “I thought I’d like to burn it to the ground and start over,” and adds, “But it’s burning itself down without my help.”
In “The Tree,” Morris candidly confesses, “I’m done filling a cup with a hole in the bottom,” while “Get the Hell Out of Here” opens with a poignant admission that she “watered the garden but forgot to fill the well.” These lyrics reflect her deep-seated frustrations with the industry.
Morris’s exit from the country music scene isn’t rooted in fatigue with twanging guitars or clever rhymes, both of which are hallmarks of her craft. Instead, it’s a principled stand against what she perceives as the industry’s failure to confront its history of racism and misogyny, and its reluctance to embrace diversity. “Allyship begins with waking up from something really comfortable,” Morris asserts, acknowledging her own privilege as a white woman who benefited from the existing system.
However, Morris has been an outspoken critic of the industry’s shortcomings, both onstage and on social media. She explains, “I’ve always been an asker of questions and a status quo challenger just by being a woman,” and she believes it wasn’t a choice but a necessity to use her platform for change.
With “The Bridge,” marking her move to Columbia Records from the label’s Nashville division, Morris not only delivers compelling music but also a visually striking music video for “The Tree.” In it, she wanders through an abandoned small town, perhaps alluding to the controversy surrounding Aldean’s recent video.
Morris, known for her collaborations with artists like Taylor Swift and Niall Horan, is currently working on her next LP with pop producer Jack Antonoff. This new musical journey signifies a deliberate shift away from the drama and scrutiny of the country music scene, allowing her to focus solely on creating exceptional music.
In the end, Maren Morris’s departure from country music is not about owning any political narrative but a personal quest for authenticity and artistic freedom. As she reflects on the industry’s turbulent year, she conveys a sense of distance and detachment, hoping to preserve the essence of a genre she once held dear, despite its flaws.