BAND of the Week
Origin: Ontario, Canada
Genre: Pop, Folk-Pop, Pop-Rock
Years Active: 2013 - present
A Juno-winning and Grammy-nominated pop singer/songwriter who broke records with his debut single, Canada's Shawn Mendes became known to international audiences when he was just 15. His mix of Ed Sheeran and Justin Bieber's styles was a hit from his first single, 2014's "Life of the Party," which made him the youngest artist to land a debut single in the Top 25 in the U.S. His full-length debut, 2015's Handwritten, went to number one in the U.S. and Canada, a feat repeated by releases including 2018's Shawn Mendes, his third studio album. Since then he has been collaborating with many artists and is finally coming out with his fourth studio album, “Wonder” which releases in December 2020.
Born and raised in Pickering, Ontario, in Greater Toronto, Shawn Peter Raul Mendes taught himself guitar at the age of 14. He also sang in his school's glee club and took acting lessons as a teen. After posting a series of cover songs to various video-sharing sites beginning in 2013, he earned a dedicated following of viewers. His version of A Great Big World's "Say Something" won Ryan Seacrest's cover-song contest in April 2014, and Mendes signed to Island Records a month later. That June, they released the then-15-year-old's debut single "Life of the Party." American radio initially ignored it, but the track entered the Billboard Hot 100 at number 24, making Mendes the youngest artist to land their first single in the Top 25. The song was also included on his four-track Island debut, The Shawn Mendes EP. The EP performed well, reaching number five on the Billboard charts and setting the stage for his full-length debut, 2015's Handwritten.
Meanwhile, Mendes had his first U.S. Top Ten hit with third single "Stitches," reaching number four while topping the singles chart in the U.K. In addition, his song "Believe" appeared on the soundtrack for the Disney Channel fantasy musical Descendants. While opening for Taylor Swift on the North American dates of her 1989 World Tour, Mendes and Fifth Harmony's Camila Cabello collaborated on the song "I Know What You Did Last Summer”.
In September 2016, Mendes released his second long-player, Illuminate, offered the Top Ten tracks "Treat You Better" and "There's Nothin' Holdin' Me Back." The album debuted at number one in the U.S. and Canada, and "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" went on to win a Juno Award for Single of the Year. Mendes launched a massive world tour in April 2017, which included a live acoustic session for MTV Unplugged that was released in November.
In April of 2018, Mendes performed his song "In My Blood" at a concert for Queen Elizabeth II's 92nd birthday at the Royal Albert Hall in London. In Canada, the eponymous LP collected Juno Awards for Pop Album and Album of the Year, and Mendes won Artist and Songwriter of the Year. "In My Blood" earned him yet another Juno, his second for Single of the Year. A deluxe version of Shawn Mendes followed later in 2019 containing the hit singles "If I Can't Have You" and "Señorita" again featuring Camila Cabello who Mendes has been in a relationship with since the summer of 2019. "Señorita" became a global chart-topper that picked up a Grammy nomination for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.
Now in 2020, Mendes will release “Wonder,” a single with an accompanying music video, on Oct. 2 ahead of his fourth studio album of the same name, set to drop on Dec. 4. Mendes took to social media to announce the album and single, releasing an interactive website and a trailer — complete with backtracking from the song’s “Intro” — to pair with the announcement.