JOHN CARUCCI Associated Press
NEW YORK — As Shawn Mendes prepares to embark on a massive world tour, the 23-year-old has released a moving single reflecting on his split from Camila Cabello.
Mendes says “When You’re Gone” was about processing the loss of his life. (Cabello has his own album coming out Friday).
Mendes believes he’s matured as an artist, especially with the time he’s had to himself during the pandemic.
“As you get older, you start to want to keep pushing the boundaries,” Mendes said.
Recently, the multi-platinum, Grammy-nominated artist spoke with The Associated Press.
Q: Tell me about the expression of your emotions for “When You’re Gone”.
A: I think it’s really like me dealing with a breakup, me dealing with the loss of someone who was so much a part of my world and it’s just me trying to be upfront and real with people because, ultimately the only way I connect with people is if I’m true to myself.
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Q: So there was a lot of introspection that you experienced?
A: I think I went through a period of freedom, then I went through a period of fear, then I came back to find freedom. And that was a huge lesson in itself – that fear isn’t how it’s going to work. And so, coming back to freedom and confidence has been huge for me.
Q: When performing such a personal song, how do you keep your emotions intact?
A: I wish I could say I had control over it, but sometimes you get caught up in it and sometimes you kind of go out of yourself. No one really has control over this stuff.
Q: So it’s about pushing the limits?
A: You really want to start breaking down walls and doing things that maybe have never been done before. So I think that’s also a sign of maturity.
Q: This tour looks massive; why so big?
A: This time around things are confusing due to COVID, and we had to move the first half of the tour to the back of the tour. So it was really about trying to make things work the way the world was doing right now. It’s a long tour; I think it’s over 100 shows worldwide, and I’m dying to get started.
Q: What can the public expect when they come to see you?
A: The show is going to be amazing. I really think it will be amazing. I think it’s going to be the best show we’ve ever put on. It’s just because the music has been so curated for a live show that I think people are going to be so excited to be at this show. This is the most excited I’ve ever been about a live show I’ve put on in my life.
Q: How is energy different from crowds around the world?
A: South America has some of the best crowds in the world. America can be a little harder to win, but if you win them, they can also be some of the best crowds in the world. But Europe is undeniably one of my favorite places to tour, always.
Q: With such intense performances, how do you relax after a show?
A: Ice baths were a game-changer for me, like a sauna, an ice bath, and a bit of meditation, and if I can keep going, I’ll probably be fine. Because you are right. I really go out there and give it my all.
Q: Last year, you made an interesting wardrobe choice at the Met Gala; are you going next month?
A: Yeah. We will have to see. I’m not sure I’m allowed to say this, but there’s a good, good, good chance.