The young 17-year old singer who is often hailed as being the next Shawn Mendes or Justin Bieber, recently won Best Canadian Act in the MTV Europe Music Award.
Like Bieber and Mendes who both gained popularity through Youtube and Vine respectively, Orlando also received attention on social media by posting covers of pop songs by artists such as Austin Mahone and Justin Bieber to his YouTube channel.
A look through his YouTube channel and you may find covers of fellow Canadian artist Shawn Mendes as well.
Debuting his first EP ‘Teenage Fever’ on March 15, 2019, Orlando then went on to embark on his first tour. He has also collaborated on songs with American music artist Mackenzie Ziegler.
His new single ‘Phobias’ was released on February 21, 2020.
We had a chat with the rising star to ask him about his music, inspiration, and touring life.
ASL365: Hi Johnny, Vanessa here from AsiaLive365. We’ve just heard your recently released song “Phobias” and we love it. It’s made us even more excited about your upcoming EP! You said that the song is quite a personal one for you. What is the story behind this song?
JO: The song is based on my personal experiences, it’s really just about my own fears and insecurities. This is the first song I’ve put out that I feel is really genuinely “me,” so I’m really excited for everyone to hear what’s going to be on the EP!
ASL365: Massive congrats on your win at the MTV Europe Music Awards last year for Best Canadian Act. What was that night like?
JO: It was probably the most fun I’ve ever had at an event, I got to meet so many cool artists that I look up to like Dua Lipa and NCT 127. It was pretty surreal to win something of that magnitude, and it was just a cool moment for my fans and I to see how far we’ve come together.
ASL365: You’ve done a fair share of Shawn Mendes covers on your Youtube channel. We reckon that you’re a fan too. Tell us, what is your favourite Mendes song?
JO: For sure, I like to support my fellow Canadian artists. I think my favourite song is “Mercy”, that’s a banger.
ASL365: Which music artists are you inspired by or which ones did grow up listening to?
JO: I grew up listening to a ton of different types of artists growing up that my dad exposed me to, but now I would say my biggest inspirations are Billie Eilish, The Weeknd, and Justin Bieber.
ASL365: From your repertoire of songs, if you could pick a favourite song or a song to introduce someone who has never heard your music before, which song would you pick and why?
JO: Of the songs that I have out right now I would have to say my newest single “Phobias”. As I said earlier, this is the first song I have felt is genuinely me, so I think it’s a pretty good representation of me as an artist.
ASL365: The clip of you making a peanut butter toast snack (on Youtube) was pretty hilarious. Would you say that this is your favourite go-to snack?
JO: Haha I would definitely say it’s up there, I also have a bit of an obsession with burgers. It’s a tie between those two.
ASL365: You’ve said that you love to party. If there was one song that would get you moving immediately onto the dance floor, what song would that be?
JO: I would have to say “Life is Good” by Drake & Future, it’s pretty hard not to dance to that one.
ASL365: What do most love about touring? Any fun stories to share?
JO: I love getting to travel to new places all around the world and getting to meet my fans in person instead of just online. Performing is one of my favourite things in the world so I feel pretty lucky to be in my position. Amsterdam was one of my favourite shows on my last tour, the crowd was SO loud it was such an insane feeling.
ASL365: Any plans to come to Asia in the near future?
JO: I’ve been wanting to come to Asia for so long, and I’m really hoping this is the year I get to. I would say the chances are pretty high, but you’ll have to stay tuned 🙂
ASL365: Thanks for answering our questions Johnny! And we can’t wait for the new EP!
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