When Carlie Hanson was 10, she wanted to be like her idol, Justin Bieber. She posted videos of herself covering some of her favorite artists’ music. More than 50 million steams, and a job at McDonald’s in rural Wisconsin under her belt, she is now supporting the buzzworthy Troye Sivan on tour.
“I was living in a city with 15,000 people, working at McDonald’s, still in school and trying to graduate early,” said Hanson, 18. “I was flying from Wisconsin to Los Angeles for music. Music is what my life is now. It’s everything I’ve always dreamed of. Now that it’s actually happening, it’s such a weird feeling.”
The jaunt comes to Comerica Theatre on Wednesday, October 24.
“You can expect a freaking shirtless drummer,” the enthusiastic teen said. “He’s 17 and only rocks out with his shirt off. It’ll be a good time.”
Ticketholders can also expect to hear her single “Only One,” which was prominently featured on an Apple Music Playlist curated by Taylor Swift. She admitted that was a shocker.
“That was one of the most surreal moments,” said Hanson, whose first concert was Shinedown with her mom.
“I couldn’t figure out if Taylor Swift actually listened to my song or if it was rigged. It was real, I guess. I just freaked out.”
Hanson isn’t quite sure why she’s been successful, while other young adults are struggling.
“Most of it was meeting the right people, I think,” she said. “They understood me and I connected with them.”
Hanson’s next move is releasing an EP and supporting behind it.
“I’ve fallen in love with doing shows,” she said. “I don’t want to do anything else.
“When people see me, I want them to know it’s OK to be goofy as hell and be yourself. That’s a huge reason I’ve gotten to where I am; just by being myself. I see a lot of people trying to make it in the industry and they aren’t being themselves. My generation can see through the fakeness. I want to be myself.
Troye Sivan w/Kim Petras and Carlie Hanson, Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington Street, Phoenix, 602.379.2800, comericatheatre.com, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, October 24, $42.50.
Soundcheck is a series about up-and-coming artists. Keep tabs on entertainermag.com to learn about other buzz bands.