Lorrie Morgan has racked up numerous accomplishments in her recording career of the past 13 years, but one goal she’s never had a chance to fulfill was releasing a live concert recording. She’ll finally have her chance on March 12 when Image Entertainment issues “The Color of Roses.”
The performance — a two-CD/cassette effort that will also be released on DVD-Video and VHS — was taped last fall at Nashville’s Tennessee Performing Arts Center, where Morgan was backed by Nashville’s Belmont University School of Music Orchestra.
Morgan says she has “always dreamed” about doing a live concert recording and that because she loves working with orchestras, it seemed natural to record that kind of show. “There is just something about a symphony that moves my soul,” she says. “Not to say that working with my band doesn’t move me. It does. But it’s such a different vibe for me. I’m such a romantic at heart, and when those strings come in and that harp, it just does something to me that’s magical.”
Charles Callelo, one of the original Four Seasons, was Morgan’s musical director for the project, as well as its co-producer with Sandy Linzer. Don Carr directed the show.
“It’s like a live greatest hits, which is very exciting, and there are [also] a number of selections that are a little new to Lorrie,” Image VP of marketing Garrett Lee says of the set.
In addition to her hits, Morgan performs such standards as “My Favorite Things,” “Fly Me to the Moon,” “Good Morning Heartache,” and “Secret Love.” The audio project’s second disc and cassette contains two studio versions of songs Morgan performs on the live show — “The Color of Roses” and a cover of Kris Kristofferson’s “Help Me Make It Through the Night” — plus a lengthy interview with the singer.
“I think that will be pretty compelling for her audience,” Lee says. “That second disc makes it a slam dunk.” Both the VHS and DVD-Video versions contain the interview, and the DVD-Video also includes a tour of Morgan’s home.
Image will tie in with 1-800-Flowers for a cross-promotion of the project, according to Lee. A discount coupon for flowers will be included in the packaging. Plans are also in discussion for a sweepstakes promotion with the flower company that would provide the winner with a dozen roses every month for a year.
Although Morgan wants to begin cutting back her touring schedule, she will hit the road to support this project. “There comes a time in everybody’s musical career that you have to regroup and reinvent yourself,” she says. “We will tour next year, but more exclusive, more special [dates]. It will probably be theaters and more intimate settings.”
Morgan’s former label home, BNA/RCA Label Group, issued 14 albums of her music, including four greatest-hits packages, a Christmas collection, and this year’s collaboration with her husband, Sammy Kershaw, titled “I Finally Found Someone.” Her credits include a double-platinum album, three platinum projects, and three gold discs, according to the Recording Industry Association of America.
She has notched 35 singles on Billboard’s Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart, including the No. 1 hits “Five Minutes,” “What Part of No,” and “I Didn’t Know My Own Strength,” plus 11 more top-10 hits.
As Ken Boesen, program director of country KWJJ Portland, Ore., puts it, “Lorrie was one of our brightest stars, and her music has stood up well. Her live show is always an event. She’s quite a bundle of energy and [has] an amazing voice.”