Marshmello, Alesso and James Bay Talk About Song ‘Chasing Stars,’ Which ‘Pulls on Heartstrings’

Marshmello, Alesso and James Bay Talk About Song 'Chasing Stars,' Which 'Pulls on Heartstrings'

Chasing Stars” is taking fans down memory lane.

Alesso and Marshmello, the electronic music giants, came together to release “Chasing Stars” featuring James Bay on Aug. 20. The single takes a look back on a broken relationship and “the one that got away” — something Bay tells PEOPLE he hopes can serve as a kind of “medicine” for “anyone who needs it.”

“It’s reminiscent of a time that you had with somebody, then it’s talking about how beautiful it was and what a wonderful time that was. It’s like, ‘do you remember that time when we were chasing stars, we were the greatest,'” Bay, 30, tells PEOPLE. “‘It was you and me against the world.’ I hope it does that for people, that’s what it does for me.”

However, what made this project so special, the “Let It Go” singer adds, was the trio’s ability to mirror the lyrics with uplifting sounds.

“The music and the lyric combined feels like something that people will want to sing,” says Bay. “It connects emotionally, it pulls on some heartstrings and it also gives you some energy. I think it just makes you want to get up out your seat and sing that chorus.”

James Bay, Marshmello and Alesso Collaborate for 'Chasing Stars'

James Bay, Marshmello and Alesso Collaborate for ‘Chasing Stars’
James Bay, Alesso and Marshmello
| Credit: Kevin young

Marshmello, 29, adds the approach he took in creating the single.

“When James talks about the song, he’s obviously talking about what he’s saying, you know what I mean? And lyrical content,” says Marshmello. “For me and Alesso, we’re obviously known for our melodic presence in music. I think it’s our duty, when the drop comes in, to make you feel what James is making you feel.”

In the music video, directed by Jake Jelicich, Bay appears working at a video store as he starts digging through VHS tapes on shelves. He eventually becomes mesmerized by television screens and a woman that appears in them before he’s transported and transcends into a dreamy nostalgia of a past relationship.

Alesso, 30, says the goal of the music video was to create something that had never been done before, while still avoiding producing something “cheesy.”

“When you come [up] with a record, like ‘Chasing Stars,’ [and] three guys [are] singing about love, how do you do that without it becoming bad or cheesy,” said Alesso. “We were so happy with how it came about.”


“Chasing Stars” Cover Art
| Credit: Kevin young

The three musicians also touch on the effects the pandemic had in their creative process.

“The only positive thing that I really felt being in lockdowns and not doing shows is that I’ve been able to put even more focus on my music,” says Alesso. “Trying to manage this DJ touring lifestyle and making quality music is tricky because I think the best music comes when you sit on it for a little bit and you think, and you listen to it again.”

Marshmello agrees, and says making music on the road can be “tough.”

“I like keyboards and stuff like that. So there wasn’t that rush. So like he said, you could really sit down and listen and feel like you had all the time in the world to perfect a little sound, a whole song, a bunch of songs, whatever it was,” he adds.

Bay, on the other hand, says his best writing happens when he’s “bouncing around the world.”

“I get to go travel to all these different places and in the moments in between that, when you stop and reflect, for me, that’s when songs really start to come through and I was very much stuck in the one place for a while,” says Bay.

However, he says staying at home also had its blessings.


James Bay
| Credit: alesso/ youtube

When asked if the trio would perform the song together anytime soon, the three jumped to respond.

“I’m down. Yeah. Let’s go,” says Alesso.

“We’re all down. Even if I’ve got to do two weeks in Barbados, let’s go,” adds Bay, referring to a loophole for leaving London where he’s currently staying, in order to travel into the United States.

“We’ll all meet in Barbados!” adds Marshmello.

“Chasing Stars” is out now.