Joshua Bassett is speaking his truth in his new songs — and calling people out.
20-year-old singer and actor bares his soul in three new songs “Crisis,” “Secret” and “Set Me Free,” released on Thursday.
In “Crisis,” the “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series:” star sings about someone “messing” with his life “as a career move” and how he knows the truth. Ahead of the songs’ releases many fans were already dissecting and linking the songs to his rumoured ex-girlfriend and co-star Olivia Rodrigo.
“If you get to tell your truth then so do I,” Bassett croons over an acoustic guitar, adding, “Half the sh** you’re saying is only half true, messing with my life as a career move.”
In the follow-up track “Secret,” Bassett questions his decisions over an upbeat retro-pop tune.
“My friends all warned me I should run for the hills, but I defended you still,” he belts. “Oh your secret’s safe with me…You don’t even know I know. Don’t worry ’cause I’m keeping my mouth closed.”
The collection ends with the ballad “Set Me Free,” which is about moving on. “You don’t get to take all of me. Set me free. I don’t need your apology. Let me be,” he laments. “I don’t recognize you, not anymore. You’re not the love that I fell for.”
“Releasing these vulnerable snippets of my life is equally terrifying and beautifully liberating,” Bassett says in a press release. “As stated in ‘Set Me Free,’ ‘It’s been a f***ing year.’ While it’s been one of the most challenging periods in my lifetime by far; it has ultimately led to immense growth. I’ve been up, down, and everywhere in between. Each of these songs pinpoint a different moment in time, in my processing.”
Meanwhile, 100 percent of the earnings for “Crisis” will be donated to mental health organizations. Additionally, in honour of Giving Tuesday, he donated a further $1 for every new pre-save/pre-add to Bring Change to Mind, Jack.org, Beyond Blue and Mind UK, raising over $13,000.
Both Bassett and Rodrigo’s fans haven’t been shy about sharing their thoughts on the two stars’ music. After her breakup anthem-filled debut album, Sour, many thought it was about their split. The LP was recently nominated for a Grammy.
Neither Bassett nor Rodrigo has ever confirmed a romance, but Rodrigo’s breakout single, “Drivers License,” sparked all sorts of speculation, namely that Bassett broke up with her for “a blonde girl,” thought by many to be Disney Channel star Sabrina Carpenter, who Bassett was also rumoured to be dating.
“People don’t know anything they’re talking about,” Bassett previously said of fan theories, which only increased after he released “Lie Lie Lie,” a song that many believed was his response to “Drivers License.” The song, however, was written months prior.
Bassett told ET in March that his “songs speak for themselves. That’s really the truth.”
“It’s funny for me to see people speculate or make theories about things. I don’t see a lot of it, but what I see, I’m like, ‘Where are you getting this from?’ It’s so funny how people piece it together,” he said. “But I get it. We’re all in quarantine. Everybody’s got nothing to do, so everyone’s trying to make more meaning out of something than there is.”
See more in the video below.
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