Catching Up With Adam Barta
By Brett Edward Stout
The first time many people were made aware of Adam Barta was when his first single streamed from the speakers at Abercrombie & Fitch stores nationwide in 2007. His other tracks have also gone on to some popular and critical acclaim: “Standing in the Rain” was LOGO’s "Sexiest Video of All Time" and “VIP” was voted as "Video of the Year". His collaboration with Kathy Sledge from Sister Sledge, titled “Give Yourself Up,” made it into the Billboard Club Top 20. After his record label, EsNtion Records, went kaput, Barta took some time to himself, but now that we heard he's back at it, we wanted to see what the talented songster was up to with his latest project, "Q&A".
Out: Tell us about your latest project.
Adam Barta: I recorded "Q&A" two years ago and it’s been sitting there. It’s a totally different sound, and I thought, It’s getting older and older, I’ll just put it out myself. Then I started planning the video.
We heard you have a few people we might know in the video.
Yeah, Lisa Lampanelli and Michael Musto [being in the video] happened serendipitously. We were having a hard time getting a venue. At one point, I called up a venue on Long Island, then I called the guy up, and he was like, “What does the venue get out of it?” Finally, I thought why don’t we just film an actual performance. When we heard that Lisa was also going to be there that night, I thought, Why don’t we reach big and ask Lisa to do a cameo? So we did a SiriusXM interview, and I met her, and we took a liking to one another. As for Michael, I’ve been friends with him for years. He’s great.
Do you worry that your videos sometimes get more attention than the songs themselves?
It’s all right. In the end, if it’s exposing the music it’s worth it.
How did you get started in music?
I was an only child. My parents didn’t have a lot, but they spoiled me in whatever way they could. I went to an all-boys academy, so there wasn’t much of an outlet to perform. Once I graduated, I was able to translate my passion into the theater world. I got involved in musical theater, and then I did a boy band before going solo. When I was younger, the technology to make music on your own didn’t exist. It does now, and it’s amazing to know that something I’m singing in my bedroom (possibly in my underwear) is going to be heard by millions of people—or be on a TV show.
You really put yourself out there, were you always so outspoken?
No. I was very shy. I had really bad acne to the point where it looked like I had chicken pox. I had no self-confidence, was very insecure. It was hard for me. One of the earliest criticisms I got from a music teacher was that I was good but, before I could make a real go at things, my skin needed to clear up.
You’ve had some hard times with your family, too?