Peter Hollens: A Fantastic A Capella Star On The Rise [YouTube NextUp Creator Profile Series]

If you could trade places with one other YouTuber for a day, which one would it be?

I would really love to spend one day as one of the members of the Piano Guys. I always feel they have so much fun with their videos … or maybe just one day on a shoot with my buddy, Devin. His films always come across as so much fun!

I see you do some stuff that benefits Cerebral Palsy charity — how did you get involved with that?

I try really hard to do one video a year that raises money for a non-profit, and I was really happy when one of my a cappella friends asked me to be a part of an album to raise money for CP. I look forward to working with future non-profits to help raise awareness and funds for other worthy programs. I’ve tried in the past to find a non-profit for brain cancer, as that was what took my father’s life last summer after an amazing 35 hard-fought years with that cancer.

You sing the “Misty Mountains” theme from “Lord of the Rings” very well. What’s one thing that you would get all Gollum-like over?

Haha! Thank you! I love being able to cover geeky and fun stuff. I really look forward to doing more of those kind of covers in the future. I think the one thing I will fight tooth and nail to keep at this point is the ability to just make music for my audience for a full living. Now that I’ve done that for a few months, it’s something I never want to give up. I want to keep on making music to inspire people, help people make it through tough days, help them decide to bring music into their own lives, or start singing. I need to keep on doing this; it just is SOO addictive. Makes me salivate and start spitting just thinking of it … naw, just kidding. Tried to get into the Gollum character for you though!

Why did you apply to be a YouTube Nextup creator?

I thought it would be a phenomenal opportunity to meet other creators like myself and learn a bunch of new tips and tricks. I really wanted to put a face to what “YouTube” was; it comes across as an invisible giant that is hard to reach and connect with. After being part of NextUp, I was able to see the faces behind YouTube, and it was an invaluable experience that I would encourage EVERYONE to try to take part in!

Do you think people are inherently good or inherently evil? And, what’s the worst thing you’ve ever done?

I think people are inherently good — if there is one thing I’ve learned from my wife it’s that. She always looks for the best in people. It’s a much more successful way to look at the world if you want to be happy and live life to the fullest. As far as worst thing I’ve ever done … gosh, probably not starting on YouTube soon enough — that’s my biggest regret. I did featured singing with Royal Caribbean with my wife for about three years after I got out of college — if I would have started doing my channel at that time, I can’t believe how different things could have been!

About the piece:

Out of YouTube’s thousands of creator channels, 30 promising creators are picked every season to participate in the YouTube NextUp Creator program — a sort of Hogwarts Academy for the very best of the YouTube best. They spend a week training at the YouTube Creator Space in Los Angeles, attending seminars, learning advanced filming techniques and interacting with some of the YouTube greats. In short, it’s a pretty cool honor. Since YouTube thinks they’re worthy, NMR thinks you should know about them.

So we’re featuring the Winter 2013 class of Nextup participants — 2 a day for the next 15 days. Learn about these fresh faces, love their content and then subscribe to their channels, because these are the next generation of YouTube innovators.

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