Madison Beer is ready.
The 19-year-old from Jericho has been in the public eye since 2012, when Justin Bieber sent his social media followers into a tizzy by tweeting out a link to Beer singing Etta James’ “At Last” on YouTube and calling her “#futurestar.” But she waited until this year to release her debut EP, “As She Pleases” (Access), and launch a concert tour, including her first Long Island show as a headliner on Saturday, May 19, at The Paramount in Huntington.
“I had to let myself prepare for it,” says Beer, calling from a tour stop in Arizona. “You have to be in the right mental state.”
That kind of patience is practically unheard-of in the music industry these days. After all, 11-year-old “Walmart Yodeling Kid” Mason Ramsey just released his own debut single less than two months after his YouTube video went viral. But Beer has always been careful with her career. She has craftily amassed a huge social media footprint — more than 10.7 million Instagram followers, about 2.7 million Twitter followers — as she lives her life in public, adding that she feels honored by the responsibility of having all those fans. “To know they are looking up to me, I definitely take it seriously,” she says.
Beer released only a handful of singles over the years, working through a variety of styles before deciding that the songs that would become “As She Pleases” suited her.
“You say you can't live without me, so why aren't you dead yet?” she sings in the kiss-off single “Dead.” “Why you still breathing?”
By writing about the world from her point of view, Beer felt like she was speaking for herself and her fans, and she has been thrilled by their responses. “It means everything to me,” she says. “People have been so amazing. The reaction videos from people mean so much.”
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Her first European tour was well-received. MTV UK said her show at O2 Academy in Islington, England, was “magical.” “One of the most enjoyable parts of the night was seeing Madison's relationship with her fans,” wrote Sam Prance. “Almost all of them were teenage girls like Madison, who have experienced the same things that she sings about. Their admiration of her is One Direction-like and you could see that she was visibly moved by their love on stage.”
Beer says she felt that connection wherever she went. “It’s such a crazy feeling to see it even in places where they all don’t even speak English,” she says. “The music helps us come together even in another language.”
The songs of “As She Pleases,” which have already racked up more than 100 million streams, reflect Beer’s point of view on self-esteem issues and the relationship woes teenagers face. “It’s always important to have a message,” she says of the EP. “I kept that in mind when I was writing it, creating it.”
But as teenagers, led by the survivors of the Parkland, Florida, shooting, have shown in recent months, their concerns also stretch far beyond themselves. Beer says the #NeverAgain movement has been close to her heart because she has a friend at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School who was in the school the day of the shooting.
“She was texting me, ‘I think I’m gonna die,’ ” says Beer, adding that her friend wasn’t injured in the shooting, but is still coping with its aftermath. “It’s so traumatic. They’re going to have to endure it the rest of their lives.”
However, Beer says that the key to moving forward from that event is to look for something positive. “The silver lining is that, as a country, so many people are all coming together to do something about it,” she says. “I think it educated a lot of people and they are now standing up for what they feel.”
It’s why Beer says music will always be the focus of her life even though she is getting involved in other creative areas. “It’s a great way to express yourself,” she says.
With the European tour under her belt, Beer says she is learning how to express herself in concert as well. “The energy is amazing,” says Beer, adding that she is nervous about returning to Long Island to perform.
“It’s going to be nerve-racking,” she says. “It’s my first hometown show. I want it to be special. . . . It’s going to be a big Beer huddle.”
Beer says she is getting used to life in Los Angeles now when she isn’t on tour, including the paparazzi who seem to trail her everywhere. (“I don’t have a problem with them,” she says of the paparazzi. “They’re just doing their jobs. My only problem is when they chase me in a car.”)
“But I will always be a New Yorker,” she says. “That is home.”
WHO Madison Beer
WHEN | WHERE 7 p.m. Thursday, May 17, Gramercy Theatre, Manhattan; 8 p.m. Saturday, May 19, The Paramount, Huntington
INFO $18.50-$43.50; 800-745-3000, ticketmaster.com
Though Madison Beer’s focus is on her music, she has already tried out some other careers, even before leaving her teen years. Here’s a look:
Beer teamed up with the United Kingdom-based retailer Missguided to design a collection aimed at “the girl who knows what she wants and does as she pleases,” according to the company. The line, which includes everything from crop tops and skirts to a leather fanny pack, went on sale April 3.
When Bvlgari was looking to launch a fragrance targeted at Generation Z, they turned to Beer, YouTube star Amanda Steele and Instagram influencer Margaret Zhang to represent it. The trio jointly serve as spokeswomen for Omnia Pink Sapphire, including in a big campaign that began in April.
Beer has been modeling for years, walking the runway for Ralph Lauren and Dolce & Gabbana and appearing in campaigns for American Eagle. She was also part of New York Fashion Week in 2016, wearing a Halston gown for the American Heart Association's Go Red for Women Red Dress Collection. — GLENN GAMBOA