An Interview with The Bay Area’s
Hot New Hip Hop Talent
Ian Maxion is a 20-year old Hip Hop singer from the
Bay Area. He took some time to tell ShoutOut about his
experience of being on “American Idol,” his singing
career and his thoughts about issues that face teens
ShoutOut: What got you into singing?
Maxion: I’ve been singing ever since I was
little. I come from a really musical family too- my
sister sings and my mom used to perform. I guess I
kind of inherited it.
ShoutOut: What made you want to go on
Maxion: I used to be in a group called “842.”
We kind of branched out after I went on “American
ShoutOut: How was your first performance?
Maxion: I was very nervous! Actually, I’m
always nervous. But yeah, my first performance, I was
the most nervous I had ever been in my life.
ShoutOut: Have you ever messed up in a
performance and was it embarrassing?
Maxion: Yeah, I messed up a little because I
was so nervous. But on stage, you just gotta keep
ShoutOut: Do you have any lucky charms or
rituals before each performance?
Maxion: Before each show, we all stand in a
circle and hold hands and pray, and I say a few words.
And then, this is a little silly, but we put our hands
in the middle and go, “One, Two, Three, Make it
ShoutOut: What kind of music do you sing?
Maxion: I sing Pop, Hip Hop, Urban... it’s a
little funky. My big inspirations are Michael Jackson
and Mariah Carey.
ShoutOut: How did you meet your dancers?
Maxion: I met my dancers after “American Idol.”
I wrote my first song with my manager Eddie. It was
really upbeat, so we decided we needed dancers and
held auditions. Some of the people that auditioned
knew me, or were acquaintances. This is kind of funny,
actually. One dancer was my high school buddy, and one
was a cousin’s best friend.
ShoutOut: What do you do when you’re not
Maxion: I’m a full time student at Chabot
College majoring in marketing. It’s really complicated
being a full time student and a singer. Over the
summer I could just focus in singing, but now I have
to balance and make time for both.
ShoutOut: What do you think your life would
have been like if you won “American Idol”?
Maxion: “American Idol” was just a push in the
right direction for me. If I had gone onto more
rounds, it would have given me better publicity. But
now, I’m just focusing on working hard to get where I
need to be.
ShoutOut: When you were a teen, were you
pressured to do drugs?
Maxion: My friends in high school did drugs.
But I have my own belief on drugs—I’m against them. I
was never really peer pressured in high school, but I
was around drugs. At times it was tempting, but you
just stay strong.
ShoutOut: Why do you think so many teens do
Maxion: I think teens do drugs for a lot of
reasons, like to get out of hard times, or to forget
about their lives for a while and relax. And, I think
some do it for fun. I think those are the main reasons.
ShoutOut: We’re a teen magazine that talks
about the risks of unprotected sex. Why do you think
so many teens today are having unprotected sex?
Maxion: It’s not an easy subject to talk about.
I think teens like to experiment, and they’re not
comfortable talking to their parents about it. I think
it’s also really hard not to [have sex] nowadays,
because sex is everywhere. I think a lot of people
rush into things too fast today, they get curious and
want to know how it feels. I mean, look at TV and at
music, look at Britney Spears, she markets sex. How
can you not want to try it?
ShoutOut: Do you have any advice for teens that
are having sex?
Maxion: Just be firm and true to what you
believe in, and be strong. Hold your ground, have a
strong head on your shoulders, and don’t be a
follower. Be your own person!
Check out Ian Maxion’s web site at: www.ianmaxion.com.