Michael Ray officially has a Top 40 hit on his hands. The Florida native’s current single, “Spirits and Demons,” a duet with Meghan Patrick, is currently at No. 39 on the Mediabase chart. The song, released in August, is from Ray’s latest Dive Bars & Broken Hearts EP, out in June.
“The song’s about going through that part of life where you’re trying to figure things out,” Ray said when “Spirits and Demons” was released. “You went through a break-up, and you go to the bottle. You wanna numb it. You wanna forget about what’s going on and just not feel anything, but when you lean into that bottle, it’s going to bring out the demons, it’s going to bring out some of those memories and you just end up reliving it.”
The ethereal video for “Spirits and Demons,” released in November, portrays the message of the song that made both Ray and Patrick proud.
“There’s great contrast in the video between my individual shots and Meghan’s shots,” Ray said of the video, which directed by Sean Hagwell. “It shows how people handle the end of a relationship differently, but the result is the same: we can’t drink away our heartbreak.”
Ray and Patrick are longtime friends, which made her an easy — if not necessarily obvious — choice to join Ray on the song.
“We went through so many thoughts and names; they were all great, but nobody felt quite right,” Ray recalled. “And it’s funny, because the answer was right under my nose. I’ve been friends with Meghan for years, in the way you’ve got your ‘Hey, I’m off the road. Wanna grab a beer?’ friends when you’re home for two or three days.
“So many of us are out there weeks at a time, chasing the dream,” he continues. “When you’re always gone, those friends who get you and get the commitment it takes, where you pick up right where you left off? They’re gold. Meghan’s not only a friend and a great hang, no matter who’s around, she’s got a voice that can blister concrete – and a gift to reach right into a song and rip its heart out, put it in her throat and meet you line for line with some intense emotions.”
Dive Bars & Broken Hearts was just released, but it’s likely that 2024 will bring even more music from Ray, who recently revealed he was already working on a new project.
“We’re talking about going in soon to start the next side,” Ray told Everything Nash over the summer. “I’m writing, and listening to a lot of songs, getting set up to get in the studio as soon as we can, and not let much time slip by. We want to try to keep things close together. I’m excited.”
“Spirits and Demons” and all of Ray’s music is available at MichaelRayMusic.com.