In this episode I talk to multi-talented musician Isobel Morris about her artistic career and life as a transgender woman. Isobel began her musical career as a bassist, guitar and writer in a self-described “terrible teenage band”. She is now a composer, songwriter, singer and skilled music producer. As a multi-instrumentalist, she performs psychedelic music both solo and as frontwoman of Whipping Girl and the Analog Birds.
00:15 Intro to Isobel Morris
00:47 Starting in audio and music career
1:50 Musical influences during childhood
2:26 Mentorship and collaboration
4:23 Dividing time in multiple pursuits
5:18 Variety in creative work
7:10 Inspiration and travel
10:01 An artist’s relationship with their instruments
11:47 Post-performance highs
12:52 Willard’s Wormholes & music reviews
17:05 Favorite personal song – “Embassy Blues”
18:50 Where to find Isobel’s music: IsobelMorris.net
19:05 Isobel’s transgender experience and labels
26:05 Explaining yourself to others
28:20 Coming out publicly
33:01 Modern history of transgender medical treatment
37:17 Dealing with public reaction and perceptions
40:00 Confirmation bias and the media
43:21 Names and pronouns
47:31 Live performance of “Tilt”
Isobel Morris is a transgender singer, songwriter, and producer. She has drawn critical notice for her catalogue of self-produced solo work, which mixes strains of baroque pop, classic R&B, and psychedelia.
Isobel is also one half of the experimental electronic rock duo Whipping Girl. She lyrically addresses her transition from male-to-female on Whipping Girl’s debut single “Reticence Cliff” and their forthcoming album Find + Replace.
In addition to producing her own work, Isobel produces, engineers, and mixes work for other artists, and is known as the founder and frontwoman of the psychedelic rock group Analog Birds.
Links mentioned in the episode:
Simple Shapes and Patterns – Isobel’s solo album
Man Alive – Thomas Page McBee memoir
Whipping Girl – by Julia Serano