Shawn Mendes has now dropped two songs from his upcoming third studio album, including the introspective “In My Blood” and the poppy, feel-good “Lost In Japan,” but the Canadian pop star has yet to announce either the title or release date for his upcoming project. While we still may have a while to wait on the nitty gritty details, Mendes is opening up for the first time about the new record, inviting Beats 1 host Zane Lowe into a recording studio in Jamaica to talk about his career, his personal life, and what it’s like being blessed by Beyoncé.
Lowe previously released a small snippet of the interview in March, with the English interviewer and Mendes discussing the singer’s recent bout of anxiety attacks, which prompted him to write “In My Blood.” Releasing the full interview this week, the pair go in depth on writing the album, as well as going from an average teen to a worldwide superstar almost overnight.
When asked for his best John Mayer story, Mendes recalled a time in Colorada and Mayer invited him out. Back then, Mendes didn’t know Mayer that well. Mayer asked if he could bring a friend.
“I’m like of course, absolutely, no problem,” Mendes said. “I turned around and Dave Chappelle walks in. So I just find myself, like I guess I was 17 at the point just sitting with Dave Chappelle and John Mayer. They’re both just giving me all this great life talk and I was like ‘Wow this is it. This is the dream.'”
The day Mendes was signed to a label, he told execs that he wanted to be just like Ed Sheeran. Fast forward a few years, he met Sheeran in L.A and the two hit it off. When Sheeran was in New York at the same time Mendes was on tour, Sheeran asked if he could play the show with him.
“In my head I’m like ‘oh my God why didn’t I ask him to play?’,” said Mendes. “To me it was so unfathomable having him come on stage and sing but [I forgot] that there’s a real friendship relationship that was building.”
At Taylor Swift’s birthday party after she had brought Mendes out at Madison Square Garden, he ran into Beyoncé. They were both on their way to the bathroom at the same time, and Mendes graciously let her go first. “She said, ‘thank you, honey’ and it was the most charming thing I’ve ever seen in my life.”
Mendes also sang Camila Cabello’s prasies.
“I don’t think you’ll ever meet somebody can who can feel emotion like her, in all aspects. She can feel hurt like no other but she can feel love like no other. And it’s really amazing,” he said. “I remember when we wrote “I Know You Did Last Summer” in the studio with her. Just her love for what she believed in was so powerful that it kind of just pushed me to make an entire album out of inspiration of the one night. I’m so proud of her, truly. I remember having conversations with her when “Stitches” went No. 1 and she goes I want to have that one day. I was like you’ll be there. That was like last week, you know “Havana” is No. 1 right now.”
Just like the rest of us, Mendes jams to Kanye. He cites Graduation as his favourite Kanye record and “Bound 2” as his favourite song.
“I’m just obsessed with the feeling when you’re listening to Kanye. The feeling you get. And I’m like finally getting to the stage where I’m starting to memorize the lyrics and I’m singing it back in the car and I’m like yeah I feel badass right now. That’s how easy it is for him to make you feel good.”
Aside from Kanye, the other artist Mendes has on repeat is fellow Canadian Daniel Caesar. “[I’ve been] listening to a lot of people based off of feeling just like that what I need,” he explained. “Music listening is a very needy thing. People will listen to like you know big smashes and party jams when they’re at a party. When they’re hungover the next day not feeling good they put on Mayer to feel better about themselves.”