While the world reacted in horror to the fatal shooting of Christina Grimmie on June 11, Max was inspired to do his part the best way he knew how: music. A week after Grimmie's tragic passing, the singer-songwriter released "Christina's Song," a touching, somber cut centered around the all-too-real lyrics: "How do I wake up / And start this day again / Tell you to stay home / Just don't get out of bed."
Speaking to Fuse about the track, Max says he didn't believe the initial news when social media pinged him to the news. "I got a tweet from someone asking if I had heard what had happened," he recounts. "I immediately looked it up and saw all of these headlines about Christina being shot at a show. It didn't feel real. It felt like the whole Internet was playing a cruel joke and I didn't want to believe it. I texted her saying that I heard what had happened and prayed she was okay. A few friends texted me saying that they had heard she passed away. I wouldn't believe that either until I knew it for a fact."
“Even in her last moments she was full of love”
The New York City native wouldn't ever get an answer from that text message he sent to Christina, but says that he had a studio session booked with new collaborators Matt Rad and Fiona Bevan and the result was "Christina's Song." The star unveiled the track—now with more than 200,000 listens on YouTube—as soon as he could with all its proceeds going to Christina's family fund and charity.
Max adds that while he doesn't personally know the Grimmie family, his memories of Christina and the particularly tragic unfolding of events inspired him to help in any way he could.
"She wasn't guarded in any way," he says. "A vulnerable and beautiful soul that just made everyone feel good. She was giving thanks to fans, one of the most vulnerable times for any artist or band because you just want to be open with these people who have come to support you. This monster took advantage of that trust in that moment and Christina, from what I've heard, had her arms wide open to him to embrace him. Even in her last moments she was full of love for people."
While Max's song will keep Christina's memory alive, the "10 Victoria's Secret Models" singer will remember her as his online-Twitter-friend-turned-real-life-kindred spirit.
"We did tons of videos with the same people, tweeted at each other plenty of times, but it wasn't until last year that I actually met her in person," he remembers. "We just bumped into each other in downtown LA and it was so funny because unlike a normal first meeting it felt like we'd known each other our whole lives. We skipped all of the first awkward meeting moments and just went straight to how we couldn't wait to finally do something musical together. We hugged like we had hugged hundreds of times. She was a rare and inspiring human who will always live on as a symbol of light, love, and passion."
You can soon support "Christina's Song" by purchasing on iTunes or streaming on Spotify and other platforms. In the meantime, check out the GoFundMe page for Christina's family.