Wonderland Summer 2021
“I still struggle with trying to fit into the shoes of who I believe ‘Shawn Mendes’ should be…at some point along the line, my expectations and my standard of who I should be, the music I should make, and the way I should look, became so high that no matter... Read More
At 14-years-old, he taught himself how to play the guitar at home in his native Toronto. By 15, he was on social media app Vine, amassing over half a billion views before its subsequent close quickly chucked him headfirst into the spotlight – blissfully ambitious and unprepared for what fame could throw at him. But unlike other pop stars with a following as big as him, each time he delves into his past, the narrative isn’t the same polished, pre-packaged tale churned out and chewed over by the mouths of many. Mendes undoubtedly radiates in his ability to be honest, repeatedly delving deeper and deeper into the crippling anxieties and struggles he’s faced as one of the biggest pop stars of our generation. Perhaps because underneath it all, Mendes is still just a small-town boy from Canada who willingly gave over his heart to music.
Ahead of eagerly awaited new music and a rumoured global tour, Mendes covers our summer issue delving into everything from crippling self-pressures to unrealistic expectations. In a refreshingly frank and sincere conversation, Mendes opens up to Kevin Abstract on everything from comparison culture to the power of therapy, and how he struggles to live up to the idealistic projection of his own image.///“It’s exciting! I feel like the competition is healthy, and I think it is important to have it. [The female rap scene] is growing because of social media. We’ve proved that we don’t need to co-sign. We’ve proved that we don’t need gatekeepers to say if our music is hot or not because we’ve proved that we are able to curate our own fan bases who [remain] supportive on a good day or a bad day – without the gatekeepers’ approval. The Internet has definitely opened up that door.”
If you’d asked us five years ago who the queen of social media was, all eyes would have been fixated on the Kylie Jenners and Kim Kardashians of the world. But in a year where fan interaction has been limited, Saweetie – between episodes on ‘How To Bag an 8 Figure Man’ for her hit YouTube Series ‘Icy University,’ self-starring memes, and hypnotically glamorous selfies – has started to cement her place at the top.
Currently boasting 11.6 million followers on Instagram alone, the Bay Area-raised rapper – born Diamonté Harper – kick-started her career with short freestyles in the front of her car, quickly blowing up with the release of her 2017 single “ICY GIRL.” Now, with various singles dominating the airways, two party-ready EPs, and “Pretty Summer Playlist: Season 1” teasing the Saweetie-dominating summer ahead, she’s back with her highly-anticipated debut album, Pretty Bitch Music.
Covering our summer issue, the breakout artist and savvy business mogul creating a legacy beyond her music speaks to friend and OG internet queen, Paris Hilton, on manifesting success, shutting out the gatekeepers and the inspiration behind her new album.
Wonderland is an international, independently published magazine offering a unique perspective on the best new and established talent across all popular culture: fashion, film, music and art.