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On the next Justin Bieber, 16-year-old Austin Mahone, and how pop stars are made:
Austin is already, in many senses, a rising star. At press time, more than 650,000 people were following him on Twitter. (By the time you read this, that number may well be a million.) And yet in Nashville, he was getting a crash course in how to do the thing that has traditionally been a prerequisite of musical stardom: live performance. He took a break, ate a slice of pepperoni pizza, and then launched into a rendition of the Bieber hit ‘One Less Lonely Girl.’ Though this was one of his favorite tunes, he seemed disconnected, and Cox was trying to pinpoint the reason. As usual, he was singing along to recorded instrument tracks (and, at times, his own guitar playing), so he should have felt comfortable. Only a handful of people were present, so he shouldn’t have felt intimidated. Finally, she realized he was adjusting to his ear monitors. ‘Is there too much reverb?’ Cox asked.
‘I don’t know,’ Austin replied. ‘What’s reverb?’