Parker Matthews: LGBTQ+ Artist and Record Label Founder

We are thrilled to sit down with LGBTQ+ artist and record label founder Parker Matthews, an exceptional musician making a significant impact in the music industry. Known for his introspective songwriting and emotional performances, Parker brings an authentic and raw perspective to his work. In this exclusive interview, we will explore his creative process, upcoming projects, and the personal experiences that inspire his music. We’ll also delve into Parker’s journey in the industry, including his commitment to supporting LGBTQ+ youth and his work with his own record label, PM3 Entertainment. Let’s dive into the world of Parker Matthews and discover the stories behind his heartfelt music.

Tell us about your upcoming music?

Hi Millenium! I have a TON of new music on the way for this year! Back in December, I wrote 10 new songs with my team and am in the middle of recording them right now.  These songs take a deeper dive into my story from the good times to the sad ones.  

Where do you get your inspiration for new music? Do your personal relationships have much influence? 

Absolutely- Mostly all of my songs focus on a past relationship, that’s more often than not, failed. Every once in a while though I’ll write a song about a situation  that I feel hopeful about or that seems promising. Writing about my negative experiences helps me move on and heal while keeping a positive outlook. 

In what ways has music served as a form of healing for you personally? 

Growing up, music always took me away from the pain that I had to deal with.  As I grew up,  I learned to channel that power of music into songwriting as well.  By writing these songs and then singing them, it allows me to take that final exhale breath of the heartbreak I felt, and let that person go.  Another part that helps me heal is that I receive so many messages from my listeners telling me that they’ve been through something similar, which lets me know that I am not alone.  

The music industry is known for being cutthroat. How do you persevere? What are some of the biggest wins and challenges you’ve had?

I think the biggest thing to help me navigate the rapid waters of the music industry is always believing in myself and staying true to authenticity.  I’ve found that my songs like, Layover, do the best because they show complete vulnerability and honesty.  When I first started out in LA, I was allowing myself to be pushed into molds by other people in the industry.  When I finally took back the reins of my own career, I made it my mission to write about the full version of me and the relationship stories I’ve had with guys.  

Can you tell us the story behind your new single “More Than Friends”? What inspired you to write it?

More Than Friends is about a guy from back in my hometown of Pittsburgh.  He and I were best friends at this restaurant that I used to work at.  We spent so much time together, one on one, and it was almost like we were in a relationship, except the physical part never went beyond platonic.  To this day, even though we’ve fallen out of touch, I always wonder, was he truly straight, or was there more to his story – Was he afraid to come out? I don’t think I’ll ever know.  What I can say for sure though are the feelings I had for him.  I respected his boundaries, always, but this record dives deep into the pleading feeling of wanting more than just friendship.  

What message do you hope your fans take away from “More Than Friends”?

I want them to understand that they’re not alone if they’ve fallen for someone who doesn’t reciprocate the same feelings.   We’ve seen this scene in movies so many times, but hearing the story audibly just hits different.  It’s crushing to know that the person you like so much doesn’t feel the same way, but knowing that others are in your exact same shoes eases the blow in a way that nothing else can.  

Your viral single “Layover” catapulted you into the public eye. How has your career evolved since then?

I remember writing that song like it was yesterday.  It’s still one of my absolute favorites.  Writing and recording that record has opened so many doors for me.  Between the collaboration with Michael Blum and Myah Marie on writing it, and the sheer vulnerability of that song, I’ve been able to work with so many other talented artists, writers, and producers.  It was the launch I needed to open the gateway for many more songs to come.  

You are a strong advocate for LGBTQ+ youth. How do you use your platform to inspire and support them?

It’s incredibly important to be a voice to the youth in the LGBTQ+ community.  There are so many young kids struggling with their identity, especially countries that are not as accepting as the US.  Being a beacon of hope and strength is at the core of my mission through music.  I want to give back the same gift that music gave to me- the gift of healing through music.  Even if  I can help take away the pain for someone for the length of a song, then I know I am doing my job.  I want them to feel seen, heard, validated, and loved.  

Can you share a story of how your music has positively impacted a fan or group of fans?

I have so many stories on this, and I love everyone of them so very much, but the first one I remember was a young girl reached out to me from London, years ago, and she said she was going to take her own life, but my song Good Enough gave her enough hope to see another day.  I was driving down the 405 freeway at the time and pulled over because I immediately started sobbing.  It’s moments like this that are the reason I do what I do.  

You started your own record label, PM3 Entertainment. What motivated you to take that step, and how has it changed your approach to music?

A lot of major labels don’t take care of their songwriters.  What I mean by that is they don’t offer songwriters master points (percentages).  All songwriters have a couple points on songs that they were a MAJOR part of writing.  It’s because of this that I started my own label.  At PM3 Entertainment, I make sure my co-writers get the master points that they deserve. These co-writers are more than just my friends- they’re part of my family. I was raised understanding the importance of this, and wanted to create a company where their rights are taken seriously.  As I grow my label, I also want it to be recognized as a company of inclusion.  Having a home for LGBTQ+ artists is extremely important to me, and I will fight everyday to make that happen.  

– Photography by By Easton Schirra and Parker Burr