TIME / Micaiah Carter

Aside from the 6 God, Drake, another renowned artist hailing from Toronto that has become a household name in the music industry is The Weeknd, aka Abel Tesfaye. By capturing a worldwide audience with his musical content revolving around love, drugs, and sex, the Canadian superstar graces TIME magazine’s cover of their upcoming “Next Generation Leaders” issue, where he opens up about fame, melancholy, love, and more.

TIME ? : @micaiahcarter

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Here are a few takeaways from the featured interview.

On why his music resonates with millennials as they navigate the first emotional turns into adulthood…

AT: “The definition of the love we feel, or what kids and 20- and 18-year-olds are going through, that music is special, and I feel like it’s what people need.”

On dropping out of school when he was 17, and spending his teenage years with no adult supervision…

AT: “I’m not trying to inspire people to drop out of school or leave home at 16 or 17, it’s just something that—it’s who I am.”

On his second studio album Beauty Behind the Madness, which won a Grammy in 2015…

AT: “I think the stars definitely did align for me. Even though we put a lot of hard work into it, I just feel like it was right place, right time.”

On performing in Coachella 2015…

AT: “I feel like I worked my entire life for that moment. Batter up, you know, this is your time to shine.”

On his latest EP, My Dear Melancholy, which many are calling his “breakup album”…

AT: “I don’t want to open that Pandora’s box, talking about relationships… It’s therapeutic, you want to get it out. It’s like you close a chapter.”

On revealing there was an album planned before, My Dear Melancholy

AT: “Prior to Melancholy, I had a whole album written, done, which wasn’t melancholy at all because it was a different time in my life.”

On the style of the aforementioned album, presumably recorded while he was still with Selena Gomez, and if the public will ever hear it…

AT: “It was very upbeat—it was beautiful.” But the project has been scrapped since he’s moved past that part of his life, saying, “I don’t want to perform something that I don’t feel,” and adding that we will “never” get to hear that purported project.

For the full story, head on over to TIME.

Additionally, Abel is featured alongside nine other artists, athletes, and activists, including Ariana Grande, telling their stories for the magazine feature.

@arianagrande is happy, and it’s important to her that people know that. At 24, Grande is one of the biggest pop stars in the world, and she’s coming out with new music two years after her last album, the blockbuster Dangerous Woman. Her latest single is called “No Tears Left to Cry,” a triumphant, ’90s-house-inflected pop confection, part breathy vocals and part spunky, spoken-word playfulness. She chose it carefully: “The intro is slow, and then it picks up,” she says. “And it’s about picking things up.” Grande made a song about resilience because she has had to be resilient, in ways that are difficult to imagine, after a terrorist detonated a bomb outside her May 22, 2017, concert in Manchester, England, killing 22 people and leaving more than 500 injured. What happened is part of the song, but the song is not about what happened. Instead of being elegiac, it’s joyful and lush, and Grande is proud of it, and of herself. “When I started to take care of myself more, then came balance, and freedom, and joy,” she says. “It poured out into the music.” In the video for the song, she’s upside-down, the way life used to feel. “We’ve messed with the idea of not being able to find the ground again,” she says, “because I feel like I’m finally landing back on my feet now.” #ArianaGrande is one of three International covers showcasing the Next Generation Leaders. Read more about the rising activists, artists and athletes who are reshaping music, sports, fashion, politics and more on TIME.com. Photograph by @jimmymarble for TIME

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You can find this latest issue of TIME magazine on newsstands starting Monday, May 28.

For more from The Weeknd, he just unveiled Marvel x ‘Starboy’ comic merch dropping tomorrow.

Words by Renz Ofiaza
Staff Writer

scribbling by day, architect by night