Can the Justin Bieber fame formula strike twice? San Antonio, Texas native Austin Mahone certainly hopes so: The 16-year-old singer has gained quite a following on YouTube and Twitter - he currently has over 760,000 followers and a single released on iTunes sold over 100,000 copies.
Not bad for a kid who does everything from his bedroom outfitted with a futon. The comparisons to Bieber are inevitable, though Mahone says he's not trying to copy him. Still, Mahone is attracting a cult-like following with teen girls: He charges about $50 for a 10-minute Skype call with fans, he told The Hollywood Reporter earlier this month.
"We've changed the prices so many times because we wanted to be fair," momager Michelle told the entertainment magazine. "We don't want to gouge people, but the demand was so high."
Songwriter - and former "American Idol" judge -- Kara DioGuardi is trying to get him signed to Warner Brother's records and likes him because "he knows how to connect. I think people feel attached to him because he's so genuine.
Sounds a lot like Bieber.
So, how do the two teen singers compare? Let's examine.
Both Bieber and Mahone are in their teens -- Bieber just turned 18, while Mahone is 16 - and are about the same height. Single mothers with the help of the grandparents raised both boys, though Bieber's was a teen mom, while Mahone's was a widower.
Bieber's fans famously refer to themselves as "Beliebers," while the mostly female fans of Mahone call themselves "Mahomies." So original, those teens.
Rise to fame
Bieber's rise to fame is commonly documented: He started posting singing videos to YouTube in 2007, mostly covers of R&B songs by Usher and Ne-Yo. He eventually gained Usher's attention and released his first album in 2009.
On the flip side, Mahone only started posting covers on YouTube in 2011 covering everyone from Bieber (of course) to Adele. He's racked up a staggering 72 million views so far.
There's no comparison when it comes to money: Bieber made about $55 million within the past year, while Mahone makes about $50K a month on merchandise sales and $50K to shows. Still, that's not bad at all for a 16-year-old working out of his bedroom!
Will Mahone reach Bieber's level? Maybe, maybe not - but he's well on his way, thanks to his legions of fans and big time exposure at the Q102 Springle Ball where he opened for Adam Lambert and Carly Rae Jepsen. Next stop? The top, of course.
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