klahm is a pop culture fan who has been writing about music online for over two years.
Most of the hundreds of millions of videos uploaded to youtube attract relatively little interest. they can be seen by friends or family, but they don’t get much attention from other places. In fact, about half of all YouTube videos get less than 100 views in their first month and only 30% of uploaded videos get more than 200 views.
although the vast majority of youtube videos never translate into fame and fortune for their creators, however, there are exceptions to that rule. Some of the world’s best-known artists can trace their big break to the video site. here’s a look at how these famous singers became rich and famous on the streaming site.
stars that were discovered on youtube
- justin bieber
- shawn mendes
- cody simpson
- charlie puth
- alessia cara
- tori kelly
- 5 seconds of summer
- carly rae jepsen
1. justin bieber
It wasn’t that long ago that Justin Bieber rose from relative obscurity to superstardom, thanks in no small part to YouTube videos of him acting like a pre-teen. The Biebs was posting home videos of performances when he was 12, and those videos convinced Island Def Jam Recordings executives to sign Bieber a big deal before he could drive.
With an estimated earnings of $55 million last year, it’s safe to say that Bieber made a good return on the time he spent uploading videos to YouTube.
2. shawn mendes
At first, Shawn only entered cover contests. however, he won so many hearts in such a short time that his career skyrocketed. The singer’s fans lived on Vine, where he garnered more than 10,000 likes in just one day. He also opened for fellow YouTuber Austin Mahone and eventually joined the T-Swift tour crew on their 1989 tour.
3. cody simpson
Cody Simpson, the Australian-born teen star (who is also an accomplished swimmer), uploaded videos of himself covering Jackson 5 and Justin Timberlake songs in 2010. He was later discovered by record producer Shawn Campbell. simpson has appeared on several television shows in recent years. he has also released two studio albums.
4. charlie puth
In September 2009, he started his own YouTube channel called Charlies Vlogs, posting comedy videos and acoustic covers. In 2010, Puth released the music video for her first song, “This Are My Sexy Shades”. In 2011, she won Perez Hilton’s Can You Sing? Performing a version of Adele’s “Someone Like You,” which she performed with Emily Luther. In the same year, Ellen Degeneres announced that she had signed Charlie and Luther to her label, Eleveneleven, after seeing her performance of Adele’s “Someone Like You”. puth had performed the song on the show. In 2012, Charlie and Luther performed Lady Antebellum’s “Need You Now” on The Ellen Degeneres Show. Puth also performed at an event supporting dkms delete blood cancer, the world’s largest bone marrow donor center.
In 2018, he released four singles and organized a tour called “Voice Notes Tour”. Charlie Puth has headlined three tours, played a few TV gigs, won a couple of awards around the world, and was nominated for a Grammy for his song “See You Again.”
5. alessia face
at age 13, alessia caracciolo would sit in her room after school and record covers of her favorite songs and then post them on youtube. the acoustic videos quickly caught the attention of one viewer, whose father turned out to be the head of ep entertainment.
In 2014, he signed a management contract with ep entertainment. on May 5, 2015, her debut single “here” was chosen as spin’s “must see” theme. it was also listed as a “must-have song” by cosmopolitan. the song was named one of the best Canadian songs of April by complex. included in billboard’s “20 Pop Songs You Need For Your Summer Playlist” in June 2015.
cara was named best new artist at the 2018 grammy awards, making her the first Canadian artist to win this award. she has also won a total of 17 awards and 71 nominations worldwide.
6. tori kelly
tori started her music career on youtube in 2006. her popular covers of frank ocean’s “thinkin’ bout you” and justin timberlake’s “suit and tie” have reached millions of views.
She wanted to be known not only as a cover artist, but also as an original songwriter. she later posted some of her original songs. Tori recently released her album “Unbreakable Smile,” which included hits like “Nobody Love.” She was also nominated for the “Best New Artist” Grammy Award in the same year.
7. 5 seconds of summer
5 Seconds of Summer built their following organically on facebook and twitter, but it was the success of their youtube channel that got them signed. this led to the bromance that changed their lives, a one-way tour (sigh, when there were still five members in the group). louis even backed them up with a simple but sweet tweet.
8. carly rae jepsen
Carly Rae Jepsen was already popular in her native Canada (she finished third on “Canadian Idol”). but she did not take the road towards us. fame until justin bieber tweeted that “call me maybe” was “possibly the catchiest song i’ve ever heard.”
That tweet sent Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun, to YouTube, where he watched videos of Jepsen’s performances and ultimately signed a mega contract with Schoolboy Records.