Wednesday, April 22, 2009

(Interview) Young&Talented: Justin Stein

Interview with Justin Stein
Questions by: Lauren
Photo by Christopher Greenwood
"Sweetest Girl" video

1. Your influences range from Ne-Yo to Rascall Flatts to Michael Jackson. What about their music or careers do you personally identify or connect with?

Well, Neyo is an amazing writer and I really hope to write songs as awesome as his. Michael Jackson is the king and probably the most amazing entertainer that has ever lived. If I could have half of his stage presence, I’m doing something right. Plus, he has sold 750+ million records... thats pretty incredible!

2. You've acted, sung, danced, and wrote songs, and you're still only eighteen years old. How did you become involved in the various creative aspects? What would you like to see happen in the next eighteen years?

Well, I guess I sort of just fell into them. I started out as a singer. As a singer, one avenue to pursue is musical theatre. Since you have to act in musicals, so I took up acting. I did my first musical when I was five. When I was about 11 years old, I was in this traveling troupe in Chicago and I had to learn how to dance and sing. That’s when I started dancing. When I was about 14, I needed a way to express myself so I started writing songs. Hopefully a lot of things will happen in the next 18 years! Career wise, I hope I am a successful solo artist as well as a successful actor. Basically, I just hope I’m still working and doing what I love to do!

3. In the last year, you went on tour opening up for Corbin Bleu. The two of you seem to have a lot in common artistically. What was your impression of the tour? Did you learn anything specific from it or Corbin?

I did. Corbin is really awesome and has a fantastic stage presence. Not to mention he is an incredible dancer. I loved being on tour and I would do it again in a heartbeat!

4. Your debut album is out and it's self-titled. Most artists do this for either their first album or the one they feel really shows who they are. What about you? Why did you decide on the self-titled route? Were there any other album title options?

[laughs] Yeah. At first I was going to call it Give Me A Chance after my song Gimme A Chance. But my mom didn’t like it because it sounded too much like I was pleading with people to like me. None of the other song titles really fit for me because none of the others summed up how I felt about this CD. So I just self titled it because I was definitely involved in creating the cd!

5. As someone who has performed on stage in the past, what are your thoughts about doing more acting, whether tv/film or plays? If you could play any part, what would it be and why?

Probably Ren McCormack in the movie version of Footlose (which will probably go to Zac Efron...). {Editor's note: He turned it down, so maybe Justin!} I played that role in middle school and it was so much fun! I love acting as much as I love singing, so I am up for anything. I just really love performing.

6. Fans are a huge part of an artist's career and they can often be great, but sometimes you get the ones that are tad bit too crazy. What have your experiences been so far with both?

[laughs] Yes I definitely have...One girl wrote a song for me. A lot of people just try and give you things. One girl gave me her stuffed animal; another gave me a golf ball just because it was the only thing she had in her pocket. My favorite experiences are when you know that you have really touched someone. When people tell me my music helped me through something, thats when I get really excited. After all, thats what the music is supposed to do. Touching and helping people is always the goal. I had one girl in particular whos mother had recently left their family. After she came to four performances of mine in different states, her father informed me that my concerts and my music had been keeping their family going through their difficult time. Without that something to look forward to, it would have been an extremely painful summer for both of them. Music is really powerful and I’m glad mine helped someone.

7. What are you currently working on? Any more tours coming up?

At the moment, I’m doing spot dates. Check my myspace for info! I’m always writing music and auditioning for things!

8. And finally, because we have to ask, if you could wish on a shooting star what would you wish for and why?

To be in the position to make a difference and give back in a major way.

Now, for the video: "Sweetest Girl"


H said...

Giving someone you're a fan of whatever is in your pocket sounds a bit risky to me! Nice interview.

Shooting Stars Mag said...

H: Thanks, and I'm glad you think so! I know, right? It cracked me up when I saw that. I mean...a golf ball?! lol


Erin said...

He sounds like a really cool guy...I like his attitude about giving back.

Great interview!

Shooting Stars Mag said...

Erin: I do as well. I love the idea of helping out, obviously with Leave a Mark and everything.

Thanks so much. I appreciate the comment. :)