Meet Austin Mahone, the 15-year-old aspiring heartthrob who has 320,000 Twitter followers and an official nickname for his fanbase. “Mahomies” much like Justin Bieber’s “Beliebers”. But who is he, anyway?
Like Justin, Austin grew up in a modest family but from Texas. His father died when he was just a baby so his mother raised him on her own. He started covering popular Bieber songs on YouTube in January. In almost a year he’s gained 290,422 subscribers, and from his heavy bang-age, taste for shiny bling and two earrings (like JB), it’s easy to tell that he’s borrowed some moves from Justin Bieber.
Mahone himself has said he hopes to one day meet and or work with the the powerhouse Biebz, but admits that “even a follow or tweet would be amazing.” Mahone’s rise to prominence this year has lead to his first concert in Houston in late November, and most importantly, recognition at his high school. “I’m overjoyed and excited and happy,” he said. “I’ve always liked music, and this is something I’ve always wanted to do.”
Scrolling through Mahone’s blog reveals covers of Lil Wayne’s “How To Love”—also a Bieber move and his own Subway commercial—because why not? His most recent project is a version of Bieber’s “Mistletoe” video, which has an incredible 5 million views since October 26, 2011 and is basically the symbol of pop music eating itself.
Mahone‘s grandmother and mother helped him recreate the new holiday classic, which is actually the sweetest thing we’ve read all day as we picture the women encouraging their future meal ticket to deliver those longing stares and poignant chest grabs he spent hours in front of the bathroom mirror perfecting. Whether or not he becomes the next Justin Bieber, it’s hard not to at least hope he snags some free tickets to an upcoming Bieber show.