An Interview with Max Bartos

  • 4 min read

A talented Broadway actor, singer, and songwriter based in the heart of Los Angeles, Max Bartos is set to release the second single from his upcoming EP on August 11th. Inspired by the loneliness of the main character in the single, 'Carry Me Home' delives an inspired narrative that explores the disconnect of love post-mortem, however it is up to the listener to hear their own message in between the
beautifully constructed layers of the song.

Featuring vocals from the gorgeous singer Tali Golergant, the single had us enraptured from the very first listen, and we couldn't wait to find out more about the inspiration and message behind it.

It's so lovely to speak with you today, Max, thank you for taking the time. We have so many questions for you, but first,  lets take it all the way back, when did you first start making music?

"Thanks so much for having me! I’ve really been making music forever!! I just watched an old VHS tape home video of me when I was 3 years old writing a song!! I really started professionally after I was in Sing Street the Musical in 2020. I was surrounded by so many amazing songwriters and musicians that I couldn’t help but start writing and recording."

Growing up, did you have any bands or artists that helped inspire your sound?

"Definitely My Chemical Romance and Duncan Sheik. Gerard Way of MCR is my biggest influence ever. His masterful construction of lyric, and melody, is truly so inspiring. He also inspires me in terms of theatricality. The way he reinvents himself into new characters onstage is something that I’ve done without thinking for many years, and seeing him do it, and how he uses it to compliment his music, has inspired me to incorporate that part of my personality into my music. Duncan Sheik’s instrumentations are very influential to me as well. His album Whisper House was my bible while I was writing this album."

Let's focus on your current release, can you tell us a bit more about the track?

"Yeah, so this current release 'Carry Me Home' is a duet I wrote for the two main characters on the album: “The Ghost” played by myself, and “The Girl” played by my amazing and surreally talented friend, Tali Golergant. I wrote this song as sort of the emotional keystone of the album, and it is the song that demonstrates most of the overall thematic messages of the record. It is the final interaction between the two characters before he posthumously says goodbye."

We've been really enjoying the track lately, how would you describe the sound behind it?

"Thanks so much! I would describe it as if Gerard Way wrote an Alternative Rock album with Duncan Sheik. There’s the gothic and macabre elements of Gerard in his Black Parade era, and elements of the folk rock score of Spring Awakening and Whisper House."

That pairing of love and loss is a strong theme in the single. Are there constant meanings or messages like that behind your music?

"It sort of changes based on the overall concept of the album. As an actor who grew up in the Musical Theatre scene, I have been surrounded by the idea of storytelling through song, and that’s how I like to write. For this album, the constant themes are finding love beyond death, and does love die along with your body. I’m trying to find the intersection between love and loss, and how the two cannot exist without the other."

What is your songwriting process, and what is the most important thing when you're bringing a song to life?

"For me, I’m a music guy first, so I’ll usually start by writing a cool guitar lick or chord progression, then I’ll kind of hum a melody line that I think fits. And then I give it twenty-four hours, and if that melody line is still stuck in my head, I’ll write lyrics for it. Usually I’ll write lyrics about something that’s happening to me, or an emotion that I’m feeling, and then spin it so it’s from the perspective of the character on the album, it’s healthier for me that way, especially when you write mostly about heartache."

What’s next for you as an artist?

"Well, the next single release after 'Carry Me Home' is happening in September, and then the Album drops on Friday October 13th!! Then my band and I are gonna go on tour with it!"

A few final questions before you go, what advice would you give to new artists?

"Keep working and keep learning! Beginning a career as a musician is daunting to say the least, but as long as you write from the heart, and make your sound genuine and unique, you’re on the right path! Also never be afraid to ask for help, or to collaborate! Building a network is the key to success."

What has been your best moment as a musician so far?

"That’s hard! Every time I have a favorite moment, a new one happens! Most recently my favorite moment was playing at the Bowery Electric! The Bowery Electric has been a dream venue of mine to play, and now we finally did it!!"

What do you like most about playing music?

"Probably being able to relate to a room full of strangers, and having them relate to me. I’m a very emotional person, so being able to have a shared emotional simultaneous experience is literally magical!"

Max Bartos wrote both the lyrics and music of this powerful duet, making it a brilliant and wonderfully cohesive project. 'Carry Me Home' was recorded at the multi-Grammy award-winning studio West West Side Music in New York City. It was produced by David Stingle co-produced by Spoonuel, and brilliantly mastered by Alan Douches. Max’s first single from the upcoming album, 'Unspoken', has already reached over 50,000 streams.

In September, Max will be releasing another single from his sophomore LP 'Memento Mori' which will be dropping on Friday, October 13th this year.

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