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ONLY ON ABC-7: "I felt I had to live my mother's dream," Khalid says

"My music is an ode to teenagers"

ABC-7's Estela Casas sits down with...

EL PASO, Texas - In an exclusive interview with ABC-7, the hottest R&B artist in the world said he had to live his "mother's dream" after she gave up her musical aspirations to raise him.

Khalid said mom, his biggest fan, is the source of the love in his music.

His mother, stationed at Fort Bliss, was a recording artist herself, the singer said. She gave up her dreams to raise her son. "She had me, so I felt I had to live my mom's dream," Khalid said.

The Americas High School graduate said he wants fans to feel his genuine qualities, his vulnerabilities, and most importantly, his honesty.  His debut album - "American Teen" - is number 13 on the Billboard album chart. It debuted at #9 two weeks ago.

Despite the sudden stardom, Khalid still drives himself to his old stomping grounds in Far East El Paso, the self-described Army brat's adopted home.

The Sun City is where Khalid began producing the music inspiring teenagers all over the world - thanks to social media.  "I think social media is a big effect, because now a days, it's a lot easier for people to connect to all the fans," Khalid said.

Khalid - which means eternal in Arabic - knows how to connect with his fans.

"I felt I had to be honest with myself, you know, I'm very young and sometimes and I was broke," the singer said, "I felt it's an ode to the teenager years, although we're young, dumb and broke, we have a lot of love to give."

Thursday, singer Sir Elton John dedicated a song to Khalid during his performance at UTEP. Backstage, Khalid signed a copy of American Teen for the pop culture icon.

"For (Elton) to say I am going to be a big star, but also mention El Paso, is super cool. He's a fan just like I'm a fan of his," Khalid said.


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