Ed Maverick Credit: Courtesy the Artist

At 18 years old, Eduardo Hernández Saucedo, aka Ed Maverick, has already become a viral phenomenon for his sweet, romantic bedroom-folk tunes; his 2018 hit “Fuentes de Ortiz” has topped 100 million streams. His pleasingly deep voice easily conveys yearning in straightforward songs that he builds around simple, colloquial phrases and strummed acoustic guitar—and each of his melodies is an earworm that’ll stay in your head for days. Raised in the small town of Delicias, Chihuahua, about five hours south of the Mexico-U.S. border, Maverick played drums in a church group before teaching himself guitar. His career exploded last year, when he distilled the torrid, pent-up adolescent longing of the breakup songs he’d written at age 16 into a lo-fi EP titled Mix pa Llorar en Tu Cuarto (“Mix for Crying in Your Bedroom”). After the EP took off on social media, he signed with Universal, which reissued it (it’s subsequently been certified gold in Mexico). Part of the charm of Maverick’s songs is norteño magic: the deserts and expanses of northern Mexico and its border lore have also inspired many songwriters Maverick cites as influences, including alt-norteño artists Juan Cirelol and Dromedarios Mágicos and classic stars such as El Tigrillo Palma and Juan Gabriel. Maverick’s ballads also evoke the region’s tradition of corridos, epic ballads that tell of heroes and battles. In this case, the battles are mostly lost, leaving the hero with a irrevocably damaged heart, but he’s never defeated. Above all, Maverick tells stories of unrequited young love so sincerely and directly that it feels he’s singing pages out of a teenager’s diary. As easy as it is to bask in this norteño troubadour’s dreamy crooning, it’s just as enjoyable to imagine what sort of musical adventures he’ll pursue in the future.   v