Bartees Strange has returned with “Heavy Heart,” his debut single on 4AD.
The video features Strange paying tribute to his father and grandfather by wearing their clothes — a floral button-down and cardigan — as the track builds to a crushing guitar riff. He’s accompanied by clowns and floral arrangements as he sheds the guilt he’s felt for years, from experiencing success over the pandemic to his grandfather’s death.
“Heavy Heart” marks Strange’s first new music since his 2020 debut Live Forever, for which he became a Rolling Stone Artist You Need to Know. “A big part of why I make music is so that people who look like me can feel like they can do it, too,” he said. “I hope that when a Black kid from Yukon, Oklahoma, picks up my record, they’re like, ‘Oh, this Black guy, he doesn’t know shit about music at all, but look what he did.’”
Strange will support Car Seat Headrest on tour this month, hitting three nights at New York’s Brooklyn Steel starting March 29. He’ll head overseas in May.