25-year-old Megan Moroney has had herself a banner year. Hot on the heels of her Tennessee Orange success—the chart-topping single has been streamed on Spotify more than 61 million times in just six months—the singer-songwriter is teeing up the release of her debut album, Lucky, in May.
In between fielding tabloid questions about her love life, gearing up for tour and prepping for her CMT Awards performance*, Moroney finds time to chat with us about her past year, her beauty staples and what’s to come for the Georgia native.
This past year must have been a whirlwind for you.
“I feel like the past year has been absolutely crazy. I actually just had a memory pop up on my phone. This time last year, I hadn’t even taken the pictures for Hair Salon, which was the first single off my EP. I was putting together the hair salon chair in a parking garage, and that was before my EP even came out. So this time last year, I was trying to get all the creative stuff for Hair Salon and Fix You Too done, and then in July, that all came out. And then in September, we decided to drop Tennessee Orange, and since then, I don’t get much sleep [laughs].
But it’s been very exciting and crazy. I don’t have time to even think about how crazy it is. But, it’s definitely been a 180 since last year.”
When you released Tennessee Orange, did you have any idea that it would become what it has?
“Absolutely not. We knew we wanted to put out something after the EP because we wanted to keep the ball rolling. But we were like maybe if we had like some sort of campaign with a DSP or something that would be good. And then Spotify reached out about their Fresh Finds program and they gave us a timeline of when the song would need to be released and it was right around football season. And I was like, well I do really like that song, and if we don’t put it out now I’ll probably write something that I like better about Georgia, or Tennessee or something, and then it will never get put out. So if we’re gonna put it out it needs to be now.
And then it just completely took off, which was not what I was expecting at all. Even when we wrote it, I’ve always loved the song, but I didn’t know if people were going to be able to look past the Georgia-Tennessee thing. But it’s very clear that they have and I’m glad they did because it is a love song. It’s about what you would do for someone you love.”
Have we nailed down who the song is about yet? Is it about Morgan Wallen? Are we going to talk about it?
“I’ve decided that the song is whoever you’d like to think the song is about.” [Laughs.]
Good for you! Let me pick your mind about beauty. You always look so glam. Do you do any of your own looks or do you have a team on standby?
“So I style myself but when I’ve got all the hair in and I look very glam that is my wonderful makeup artist and hair artist. So I style everything, but yeah, It costs a lot of money to look as cheap as I do as Dolly said.”
When you’re doing your own glam, do you have any favorite products that you always turn to?
“Yeah, I don’t always have the glam team. So for shows that are farther away or are smaller I do my own makeup. I like Charlotte Tilbury a lot. I use almost all of her products. Usually when I do my own makeup, since I know it’s never going to look as good as when they do it, I try to go on the lighter side and do more of a glowy and minimal look. If I try to make myself look the way my glam team does, I would fail.”
Are you big into skin care?
“I am. I use Drunk Elephant products. I try to keep it simple though. I’ll use a cleanser and a moisturizer and a serum and some undereye stuff. I try not to overdo it because I travel so much and it’s hard to take all the things that they send me.”
Let’s talk about your hair. How do you get all that volume?
“So ever since the CMA Awards last year, I have been wearing Cashmere clip ins. But there’s also this product, the Unite Volumizing Spray ($31), that 100-percent helps. My hair girl always puts it in my hair. I use it before I blow out my hair.
I also like the Olaplex Oil ($30) for second-day hair because I try to only wash my hair once a week. So I have to do a lot of different hairstyles based on where I am in my hair wash cycle. Right now it’s maybe day five and I’m doing a slicked back bun.
And then usually if I’m curling my own hair, I only know how to use the curling wands, so I use a one and a half inch wand. So that’s how I do my hair, but my hairstylist does the fancy stuff.”
You have a tour coming up, you’re performing at the CMTS, you mentioned you barely have any time to sleep. What do you do for self care?
“I try to get massages a few times a month. I think that’s really important because when I have a spa day I turn off my phone and I am just zoomed out. I try to go on walks in the morning, if it’s nice, and I think that kind of clears my head a little bit.
I just try to stay off my phone if I can, but it is hard because a lot of what I have to do is on my phone. But yeah, big massage girl.”
Your debut album comes out on May 5. Is there anything you can tease ahead of the release?
“Well, Girl in the Mirror is coming out April 14. It comes out a little early and I’m really excited for that one. We’ve got a video we shot with that; nobody knows that so I’m excited for people to see it.
As for the record, the songs are very much me. I like to cut songs that I don’t think would necessarily fit with another artist.
And so there are funny songs, like Sleep on my Side. Girl in the Mirror is obviously a serious, very vulnerable song. And then there are heartbreak songs like Kansas Anymore. But then there are fun songs like Another on the Way, so there’s just a little bit of everything.
It’s everything that I love about country music and songwriting. I’m excited for everyone to hear it and then get to play the songs all year.”
*The 2023 CMT MUSIC AWARDS, hosted by Kane Brown & Kelsea Ballerini airs LIVE from Austin, Texas’ Moody Center for the first time ever on Sunday, April 2, 2023 (8:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) on CBS and live and on demand on Paramount+.*. Country music’s only entirely fan-voted award show will feature performances from the biggest names in music including Carrie Underwood, Keith Urban, Blake Shelton, and more.