Some people love a slow burn — but for singer-songwriter Joshua Bassett, the pain of waiting for a resolution that might never come is too much to bear, as evidenced by his new single, “Smoke Slow.” The vulnerable, piano-backed song finds the High School Musical actor pining for quality time with a love interest he knows he won’t ever be able to call his own.
“All that we are is all that we’ll ever be, ‘cause he’s the one waiting at home,” Bassett sings on the song’s chorus. “She holds my guitar as I pluck out a melody/There’s only so far we can go/Next to you, but I’ll never be close/So take your time while you’re mine and smoke slow.”
The video opens with the 21-year-old watching a beautiful girl walk into a party alongside a character played by Love, Victor actor Michael Cimino. Bassett and the female character start to chat and smoke a cigarette together, dipping their feet in a pool while Cimino roams the party looking for his date. Mid-song, Bassett falls into the addictive “illusions of a love that never was” as Bassett imagines the two sharing intimate moments.
“This song is about savoring those moments with a person you feel close to, but know you can’t be with,” Bassett says. “Since I couldn’t say it aloud, of course, I had to write a song about it — ha!“
The single’s release follows the premiere of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series‘ third season, where Bassett plays the sensitive Ricky Bowen. It also comes on the heels of Bassett’s standout single “Doppelgänger” and his three-track Crisis / Secret / Set Me Free EP, which featured songs of the same names. As he starts filming the fourth season of HSM:TM:TS, Bassett will embark on a short tour, after canceling a much larger set of dates.
Joshua Bassett Tour Dates
Sept. 9 – Toronto, ON @ Axis Lounge
Sept. 12 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom
Sept. 13 – New York, NY @ Bowery Ballroom
Oct. 16 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Troubadour
Oct. 17 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Troubadour