He's touring with Taylor Swift, got a gig as a teen brand ambassador for Lil Wayne's Trukfit line and worked with in-demand director Colin Tilley for his new "What About Love" music video. It's pretty safe to say Austin Mahone is rolling with the in-crowd.
But anyone looking for proof won't need to look any further than his Instagram. When the 17-year-old singer stopped by on Monday for our "Live From MTV" special, we asked him to give us the backstory on some of the best pictures he's posted with famous friends. Mahomies may be way into those shirtless photos, but these got nearly as many likes!
The first photo host Christina Garibaldi showed Austin was with Selena Gomez, who Mahone said was "really cool."
"We're both from Texas, so that's cool. That was at the Disney Music Awards," he explained about the photo. The singers both attended the dinner after last month's Billboard Music Awards (as did Mahone's tourmates, Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran), and the "Say You're Just a Friend" singer revealed he and Gomez just talked about "music stuff."
In another pic, which Mahone captioned "Met my inspiration," he looks giddy posing with Chris Brown, a big influence on Austin's dancing.
"I think he's an amazing artist. He puts on a really good show. I'm a big fan of his music, so it [the photo] was actually in L.A. at this charity event," Mahone explained. He snagged a photo with cutie Ariana Grande at the same event. And according to Mahone, the pair may or may not have collaborated on his forthcoming album.
Years before Mahone's career took off with hit songs and record deals, he met Taylor Swift at a coffee shop, where he received some advice from the country superstar. On "Live From MTV," we asked Mahone for the details behind a very recent shot of him and Swift, wearing a flirty black dress and with her arms wrapped around the teen. It showed how far he's come since that first introduction: In the picture, Taylor and Austin are hanging out backstage on his first night joining her on the Red Tour.
Austin Mahone's brand-new single, "What About Love," is available now on iTunes.