Fitz, of Fitz and the Tantrums, has released his first solo single, “Head Up High,” from a debut full-length album set to arrive next year.
“Head Up High” is a booming pop rock track accentuated with horns that boasts a message — as the song’s title suggests — that’s all about staying optimistic: “I get knocked down, but I just keep my head up high, high, high/Stuck on the ground but I just keep my head up high, high, high.” The track arrives with a music video that uses animation and green screen technology to fly Fitz to the moon, send him speeding around a seaside highway and turn him into a statue that bursts apart.
In a statement, Fitz said of “Head Up High”: “I wanted to do a tune centered around the acoustic, which is very different from Fitz and the Tantrums. We’ve only used an acoustic guitar on one song in four albums! The chords and lyrics spilled out of me. [Producer/co-writer] Ryan [Daly] and I logged into the Zoom session, and you could read the weight we were carrying on our faces. Collectively…not as a city, community, country, or even continent… the whole world is carrying the weight of what the global pandemic has meant. We’re all experiencing it at the same time. So, the statement rang out, ‘You’ve got to keep your head up’. The message feels so relevant. Life is not a sprint; it’s a marathon. I needed to hear that message and express it in a song to rally everybody to keep their heads above water.”
Fitz and Daly wrote much of the album over Zoom and recorded it during remote sessions in a fairly short period of time. The as-yet-untitled album follows Fitz and the Tantrums’ 2019 album, All the Feels.
Fitz also shared a statement about making his solo debut this late in his career, saying: “I didn’t even get my first break until I was 38 years old. By that, I mean I could sell a bunch of tickets to people other than my friends! It wasn’t until I turned 40 that the band experienced any real success. I busted my ass and faced so much rejection for a good 15 years. I put down this dream more than once because I was so heartbroken and devastated by the industry. However, I had this monkey on my back that said, ‘You’ve got to try again.’ To have the opportunity to make what will be my fifth album overall is mind-blowing. It’s already an incredibly unusual path. To make it even more usual, my wife and I were lying in bed and laughing once we finished the contract. I was like, ‘Can we take a moment to appreciate the fact I’m a 50-year-old man who just signed his first record deal?’”