BET Awards 2017 | Behind the Lights of Maxwell

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BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 17:  Singer Maxwell performs onstage during BET Presents the American Black Film Festival Honors on February 17, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California.  (Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Maxwell

BET Awards 2017 | Behind the Lights of Maxwell

Check out why Maxwell is more than just a singer.

Published June 20, 2017

  1. Artists for Peace and Justice
    NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 01:  Grammy award winning musician Maxwell attends the French Institute Alliance Franaise and Artists for Peace and Justice "Haiti Optimiste" event at Florence Gould Hall on June 1, 2016 in New York City.  (Photo by Debra L Rothenberg/Getty Images)
    (Photo: Debra L Rothenberg/Getty Images)

    Maxwell is a big advocate for a non-profit organization called Artists for Peace and Justice. The organization addresses issues of poverty and encourages peace around the world. Artists for Peace and Justice also supports communities in Haiti with health care and education programs. Maxwell's roots are half Haitian and half Puerto Rican, so you know this foundation is near and dear to his heart.

  2. Where It All Started
    CHICAGO - JUNE 1996:  Singer Maxwell, poses for photos backstage at the Park West Theater in Chicago, Illinois in JUNE 1996.  (Photo By Raymond Boyd/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
    (Photo: Raymond Boyd/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

    Maxwell's love from music grew after he received a keyboard from his friend when he was a teen. When he was a child, he started off singing in church. His love for music grew as he wrote more songs and started performing in New York City.

  3. Making A Way
    Maxwell performs at the Hanover Grand, London, circa 1996. (Photo by Mark Baker/Sony Music Archive/Getty Images)
    (Photo: Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images)

    While performing music in the New York club circuit, Maxwell waited tables to help support himself financially. He continued to do this as his popularity grew within the club circuit.

  4. He Worked Where?
    TORONTO, ONTARIO, CANADA - 2016/05/08: Pizza Hut rolled up paper napkin with logo printed on them while resting on wooden table. (Photo: Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images)
    (Photo: Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images)

    Before the fame and before waiting tables, Maxwell was a Pizza Hut dishwasher.  This was Maxwell's first job and we're kind of happy that career didn't work out for him!

  5. He's A Vegan!
    NEW YORK - JULY 08:  Singer Maxwell performs on CBS' "The Early Show" at CBS Early Show Studio Plaza on July 8, 2009 in New York City.  (Photo: Mike Coppola/FilmMagic)
    (Photo: Mike Coppola/FilmMagic)

    Well... not quite, but he's close enough to it! In an interiew with Us Magazine, Maxwell stated, "I generally eat very healthy — almost vegan — but every now and then I gotta rock a good steak!"

  6. Pioneer of Neo-Soul
    Maxwell (Photo: Theo Wargo/WireImage)
    (Photo: Theo Wargo/WireImage)

    Maxwell is often credited as one of the leaders of neo-soul music. Even though this is a coveted title that fits him, he gives props to fellow neo-soul artist D'Angelo for pioneering the genre. 

  7. Help From R. Kelly

    Maxwell was fortunate to have R. Kelly write one of his most popular songs, "Fortunate." R. Kelly produced, wrote and composed the song before Maxwell recorded it. "Fortunate" went on to be Maxwell's biggest record to date.

  8. All-Around Musician
    Maxwell performs at the Hanover Grand, London, circa 1996. (Photo: Mark Baker/Sony Music Archive/Getty Images)
    (Photo: Mark Baker/Sony Music Archive/Getty Images)

    Not only is Maxwell a phenomenal soul singer, he also knows how to play various instruments. Maxwell also plays the piano and guitar.

Written by BET Staff

(Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)

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