Earlier this year, Shawn Mendes set out on his 2017 Illuminate World Tour. And he's been absolutely crushing it, playing with stars like Charlie Puth and James TW (who you might remember since Shawn was kind of the one who discovered him — and they played together on Shawn's first world tour). Just last week, Shawn wrapped up the North American leg of his tour. But in November, he'll be hitting the road again — this time with Julia Michaels.
So who is Julia Michaels? If you haven't heard of her, it's probably just because you don't recognize her name — but take one listen to her song and you'll go, "Oh, I know her!" And if you have heard of her, well, we've got the whole inside scoop.
Her huge hit right now is "Issues," which came out in January of this year but is still going strong. Julia even played it at the MTV Video Music Awards last weekend — and she totally crushed it. The performance was seriously emotional and totally gorgeous. Check it out.
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Her first EP, Nervous System, came out at the end of July, and it included other songs like "Uh Huh," "Worst in Me," "Make It Up To You," "Just Do It," "Pink," and "Don't Wanna Think." "Uh Huh" is actually Julia's second single, and it dropped in June.
"The music [on my songs] is very simple – just an added texture to tell the story," Julia told Rolling Stone. "I'm a perfectionist and like things clean and in their space."
Julia is 23 years old now, but she started singing when she was just a young teenager. She considered herself a songwriter first and foremost. "I've been the person who hides behind people and lets everyone else do their thing, and I've been content there," she told Billboard when they called her one of their 2017 Artists to Watch. "I just remember really loving words and writing about anything I could... My sister was the singer... I always had the mentality there could only be one in the family."
But as she started recording demos for the songs she was writing, there was interest not just in her writing, but in her. In 2015, she was working on "Trade Hearts" for Jason Derulo and recorded the female half of the duet so he could see what it sounded like. But when Jason heard the song, he knew he wanted Julia to be other voice on the song, not just the writer behind it.
She's also written for Demi Lovato, Fifth Harmony, Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber, Hailee Steinfeld, Little Mix, Sofia Carson — and the list goes on. Basically, she was a superstar way before she ever took the stage. Which, by the way, she did only for the second time in her life at the 2016 Rio Olympics. "I remember the countdown [before our performance], and then, after that, I feel like I blacked out and I woke up eating pizza," she joked to Billboard.
Well, for one, she wrote the Austin & Ally theme song when she was still just a teen. Her other credits include 5H's "Miss Movin' On," Hailee Steinfeld's "Love Myself," the Biebs' "Sorry," Selena's "Hands to Myself" and "Bad Liar," Nick Jonas' "Chainsaw," and Lea Michele's "Truce." And that's not even half of the full list. Julia is basically behind all of your favorite songs — and now her songs are going to be some of your favorites too.
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"I actually wrote it about a fight I had with my boyfriend," Julia explained to Harper's Bazaar. "I tend to be a very non-confrontational person, so a lot of the time he will just fight at me, and I just kind of listen. A lot of the times I want to scream what I want to say, and it won’t come out, like my mind won’t work with my mouth sometimes, so basically everything I wanted to say but couldn’t say, I put in ‘Issues,’ and ‘Issues’ is me and my boyfriend, and my relationship, (but mostly me) in three minutes, seriously."
When she writes for herself, it's a different process than writing for other people. "I tend to put a little bit of myself in everything that I write, but not [as] much [for other singers]. I’m uncomfortable with the idea of someone singing such a personal song of mine." That's why she started writing for herself — and she's been doing awesome. We can't wait to see her take the stage with Shawn later this year.
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