MAX’s new music continues to dive deeper into spreading a message of being true to who you are, wearing what you want to wear, loving who you want to love, and feeling accepted. His most recent collaboration with SUGA of BTS, Blueberry Eyes, has accumulated over 100 million streams and over 30 million YouTube music video views since its release. MAX explains how he bonded with the BTS star over basketball, and why he’s done people-pleasing.
Last year was a big year for MAX personally and professionally; he welcomed his daughter into the world and released his sophomore album, Colour Vision.
Joining me on a call from “La-La land”, MAX (real name Maxwell George Schneider) is adjusting to the very early mornings and sneaking in naps where he can, but is loving every second of fatherhood:
“Being a dad is the best. I had this thought yesterday: it's like when you get your driver's license and you can suddenly drive a car, and you're just like, ‘whoa – I'm doing this right now’ – that's what it's like being a dad! This feels like a lot of responsibility,” he laughs.
“It just changes everything. It changes your perspective; you feel everything more, and time is so different – it’s much more precious. It's remarkable. She's the coolest little human. I can't wait to watch her grow up.”
Before making a name for himself in the music industry, MAX worked on Broadway, modeled with Madonna for an international Dolce & Gabbana campaign, and co-wrote the song Show You How to Do for the Disney show, Shake It Up. He later portrayed Zander in the Nickelodeon TV series How to Rock and starred in the Nickelodeon original film, Rags as Charlie Prince. He was killing it in film and TV, but despite that, he knew that music was his real calling.
“I've always been a people pleaser, and I always said yes to a lot of stuff – you don't want to turn down an opportunity,” he says. “I got super lucky to do so many different things. There was a certain point where I got offered a big movie, and it was a lot of money – more than anything I'd ever been offered. It was a leading role.”
Faced with the choice of taking the role (and huge paycheck), or going on tour and creating the next piece of music, MAX made his decision:
“The choice was so clear to me. I realized so many other people would die for that part that I was offered and be so excited for it. I realised I was not fully alive on set in the same way I was on stage. Life is short so you’ve got to choose the thing that you're the most passionate about and make it work. That was my big moment because this was literally the choice between the two.
"I had been making both work for so long, and I just wasn't really doing great at either one. I was doing well, I just wasn't doing my best,” he clarifies. “By committing to music I've been the happiest, and I've also been the most fulfilled, for sure.”