A teen pop artist who broke records with his debut single, singer and songwriter Shawn Mendes was born and raised in Toronto, Canada. After posting a series of his cover versions to various video-sharing sites, Mendes earned himself a dedicated following of viewers. His mix of Ed Sheeran’s style and Justin Bieber’s also appealed to Island Records, who signed Mendes in 2014. That same year 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 100 singles chart at number 24, making Mendes the youngest artist to land a debut single in the Top 25. The song was also included on Mendes’ four-track Island debut, The Shawn Mendes EP.
The EP performed very well, reaching number five on the Billboard charts on its way toward sales of over 100,000, setting the stage for his full-length debut, Handwritten, in the spring of 2015. Preceded by the single “Something Big,” Handwritten appeared to strong sales, debuting at number one in both Canada and the U.S. In 2015, his single “Believe” landed on the soundtrack for the Disney Channel fantasy musical Descendants.