Q&A With Austin Mahone On Being The Next Big Teen Star, Rising To Fame From YouTube & His Show On Awesomeness TV

Watch out for Austin Mahone! The sixteen-year-old pop singer who shot to fame after recording covers on YouTube is quickly taking over — literally! — with his own show aptly called “Austin Mahone Takeover” on Awesomeness TV. He’s a star to know with dozens of viral videos under his belt, a loyal fan base known as Mahomies, and an upcoming tour with Taylor Swift. We chatted with Austin about his success and how he’s become a favorite among tweens and teens.

Austin MahoneYpulse: What inspired you to start making videos on YouTube in the first place?

Austin Mahone: My best friend and I were just chilling in our rooms and we were bored out of our minds because we live in this little town that had nothing going on — no movie theater, no bowling alley, no mall. So we had nothing to do and we would just go online, watch people on YouTube and say “Oh, that seems kinda cool.” We just decided to make a channel and post videos, and it took off.

YP: You’re often compared to Justin Bieber. How do you feel about that?

AM: I think it’s great because he’s so successful and talented, but it can get annoying sometimes because I’m not trying to be the next Justin Bieber. I want to do my own thing and be my own person. I think people see that I’m 16 and also started on YouTube, but I’m really trying to make a name for myself without being “the next Justin Bieber.”

YP: What can you tell us about your upcoming album? What kind of sounds and styles are you going for?

AM: My album is hopefully coming out by the end of the year — I’m trying to give it to my fans as a holiday present — and it’s going to be like "Say Somethin." So it’s happy, and upbeat, but there will also be some ballads on there, some urban songs, maybe a little R&B. But overall, it’s mostly going to be like "Say Somethin."

YP: You’re going…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

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This week, Mattel introduced an American Boy doll, their first male offering in the company’s 31-year history. New doll Logan Everett is part of a pair of singer-songwriters from Nashville who come with music-inspired accessories. The company reports that customers have been asking for a male doll for some time, and Mattel’s continuing strategy to diversify their offerings helped increase sales by 4% last year. (KidscreenNYTimes

Kids in Australia are spending more time online than watching TV. Research firm Roy Morgan reports that in 2016 six-13-year-olds spent an average of 12 hours a week online compared to 10.5 hours spent in front of the TV, the first time internet surpassed TV since the survey began in 2008. Online time has also almost doubled in the last eight years. The firm says, "The idea that TV is boring no matter what is on is just because TV is so static and it might have ads on it." (ABC

The current state of the White House has ignited Gen Z’s interest in politics—according to AwesomenessTV’s CEO, Brian Robbins. He reports that his own children’s newfound fascination with politics sparked by the recent election has inspired him to bring more political content to AwesomenessTV. Because “[a]n audience that really wasn't that interested is now really interested," the company will move away from “fluffy, horrible” entertainment news into political news, which could be in the form of documentaries, or scripted shows. (Business Insider)

Millennials are reporting higher rates of depression than any other generation, creating challenges at work. To avoid the stigma surrounding mental issues, young employees are increasingly resorting to using personal days to recuperate from anxiety, depression, and other afflictions. According to one expert, “this generation is not necessarily more depressed than workers of past generations, but more equipped to recognize it”—however, they fear judgement from their employers. (MarketWatch)  

Is Snap Inc. really a camera company? They say they are, and in their IPO filing the brand wrote, “In the way that the flashing cursor became the starting point for most products on desktop computers, we believe that the camera screen will be the starting point for most products on smartphones.” WeChat’s ability to read QR codes, Pinterest’s new visual search, and Facebook Messengers’ new visual capabilities all point to expanding capabilities of a camera—and the fact that “users’ experience of the world is increasingly mediated through cameras.” (The New Yorker)  

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