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Shawn Mendes on new album, world tour, and handling fame

Larry King NowSep 07 '16

Music wunderkind Shawn Mendes dishes on a variety of topics during his visit to 'Larry King Now,' including the process behind constructing his new album 'Illuminate,' and what fans can expect from a forthcoming world tour. Plus, Shawn opens up about handling global fame at such a young age, what it was like working alongside Taylor Swift, and his next big career move.

Singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes, on the cusp of releasing his new album Illuminate, embraces the new sounds and control that widespread success has allowed him to have over his music. Plus, the literally overnight sensation embraces the lessons he’s learned from working with powerhouse artists such as Taylor Swift.

Shawn Mendes discusses the duality of the Internet, it can make your career, but it can break one too. The Madison Square Garden headliner also gives some insight into future aspirations, and how he stays grounded even after finding fame in such short time.

Shawn Mendes proudly speaks to his new album, which he controlled as both producer and singer-songwriter. He also had more creative freedom when shooting music videos, which allowed him to embrace his other creative passion, acting. Mendes reveals his musical inspirations, the relationship he fosters with his fans, and the change from shooting viral videos to performing for a live audience.


*Posted Online on Ora.TV on Sep 7th 2016:

“I thought it was a cool idea to put a little cover up online. Yeah it was literally six seconds of singing. I put it up and didn’t really think much of it. Went to bed that night, woke up the next day, and it had like 2000 likes. Obviously, I freaked out and so that day I posted like six other covers. So on the page there’s this thing where when your video would get lots of like there’s this thing it would go to called the popular page. And so my cover video went to the top of this popular page and it was like by the end of the day I had like 15,000 likes along with 15,000 followers so, so to speak, it was kind of a overnight type of thing.” — Shawn Mendes on finding initial success using the app Vine.

“I’m so proud of the album. I think, like, every single song individually I’m super proud of.” — Shawn Mendes on his new album ‘Illuminate’

“In terms of the production, like I knew that not only did I want to be a part of writing every single song, I wanted to make sure that the production and every aspect of the song was completely from my mind and heart. And so, you know, I was there right beside the producer through it all. But with my voice, singing is still really new to me. And last year was the first year I started, a couple years ago, I started really writing and singing. I got up to the studio and all these ideas I had in my head, and all these things I was hearing that kind of, by writing a couple songs it kind of, one day I got into the vocal booth and started singing, this growl kind of appeared, and we all got really excited about it. It was like I found my voice inside of the studio booth, creating the album.” — Shawn Mendes on discovering his own personal sound after doing a year of his own music

“I think Justin [Bieber] and obviously Ed Sheeran are both phenomenal artists. Obviously my music is different than Justin’s. It’s closer to Ed’s so there’s good things.” — Shawn Mendes on being compared to Justin Bieber and Ed Sheeran

“The MSG is gonna be big. It’s gonna be cool because we’re playing a lot of the new album so the whole set is gonna be changed, the whole production. It’s all gonna be new.” – Shawn Mendes on his upcoming sold-out show at Madison Square Garden.

‘Musically my parents were no singers, no instrument players, but always blasting Garth Brooks, Led Zeppelin, lots of reggae music, Shania Twain. And so growing up I was constantly engulfed in music. But as I started to get older I fell in love with what Bruno Mars did, well does, and what Ed Sheeran does, John Mayer. All those people I’m very fond of. Their style.” — Shawn Mendes on his musical inspirations

“It’s an incredible place and a horrible place at the same time. I think it’s phenomenal how you can take the Internet and completely make an entire career out of it, but it can also strip you from one too so you have to be careful.” — Shawn Mendes on the capacity for the Internet to be both useful and destructive

“First time I played to an audience was this random day in Toronto where a couple people from Vine were going to Toronto to meet their fans and I said to my parents, ‘I’m gonna go to Toronto, downtown Toronto, and meet some fans. Hopefully there’s people who know me.’ And I got down there and there was like 3000 people and they immediately started mobbing me, and it was a really surreal experience. I sat down on a bench and pulled out my guitar and started singing for them. And that was like, that was the moment where it all of a sudden went from something impossible to a very tangible dream.” – Shawn Mendes on the first time he played live for an audience.

“I still get nervous every show. You turn nerves into whatever that is. That performing thing that people can’t really explain.” – Shawn Mendes on stage fright.

“I love acting. I would really love to act. In the music videos we’re releasing and stuff you kind of get to see that acting but I would love to go and venture into that land.” — Shawn Mendes on a possible acting career in his future

“There’s no amount of success that allows you to stop working hard.” — Shawn Mendes on his new philosophy inspired from touring with Taylor Swift