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From singer to creative darling: How Maroon 5's Adam Levine became a household name

In addition to fronting Maroon 5 and starring on The Voice, Adam Levine has created a scent named after himself. ‘The more I was involved in the [scent’s] creative process and the more it was me, the more I liked it and felt comfortable putting my name on it. It’s the same with music.’

Jim Ross/The Globe and Mail

Rocker Adam Levine is a household name today, thanks to his vaunted status as frontman of Grammy Award-winning band Maroon 5 and a star-confirming turn as a celebrity coach on NBC's reality competition show The Voice.

But at the beginning, Levine, like many pop music hopefuls, waited for that big break which would launch his career into the stratosphere of fame and fortune.

He and his original bandmates – Jesse Carmichael, Mickey Madden and Ryan Dusick – were young when they first assembled as a group in their native Los Angeles in 1994.

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They met in high school and initially performed in obscurity, playing gigs in West Hollywood clubs under the name Kara's Flowers.

"We began playing music at a very early age in school together and were fortunate enough growing up in L.A. when we did because of the local exposure we got as young musicians," Levine, now 34, said in a recent interview.

They had that extra something which helped them stand out – singing and songwriting talent as well as boyish good looks.

Then one day opportunity came knocking.

"We were booked a spot performing on an episode of 90210 and everything just came together for us," continued Levine, whose dreamy falsetto and dark good looks have turned him into a heartthrob who is not above stripping out of his tight black T-shirts when performing live on stage. "We worked our asses off for it but were lucky with some of the opportunities we got."

Soon after, the newly named Maroon 5 signed to Reprise Records. Overexposed, the band's latest of four albums, came out last June and has since gone platinum. Among the record's synthesized dance singles is One More Night, which held the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Top 11 for nine consecutive weeks.

Levine's own career of late has been equally as shiny.

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Previously know for dating top models and riding motorcycles, the heavily tattooed singer is now a serious businessman with reported annual earnings of $35-million (U.S.).

Besides making music and appearing regularly on The Voice, Levine has lately embarked on designing a clothing collection as well as a recently released signature scent, sold in exclusively in Canada through Shoppers Drug Mart.

The eponymous scent was created in collaboration with renown French perfumer Yann Vasnier for ID Perfumes and is packaged in a slender glass bottle with a silver mesh cap resembling a microphone.

There are actually two scents, one male and one female.

The women's eau de parfum has a bold, woodsy smell with an overdose of spice combined with Indian jasmine petals, Australian sandalwood and rose petals. The men's eau de cologne is a mix of grapefruit, lemongrass and mandarin intensified by notes of cedarwood and sandalwood.

Levine says when creating his signature scent he approached it the same way as writing a song.

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"I create from what I like and what inspires me. That is for everything creative I'm involved with across the board," he said.

"With the fragrance, I was apprehensive at first about doing it but decided the more I was involved in the creative process and the more it was me, the more I liked it and felt comfortable putting my name on it. It's the same with music. I'm so involved with the creative process of developing and recording a song until I'm happy with it. Only then can I be happy putting it out to the public."

Next on the horizon is Maroon 5 summer tour and a role in the coming film, Can a Song Save Your Life?, in which Levine will star opposite Keira Knightley.

Levine is returning to Hollywood, this time as a high-voltage star determined to help others get a leg up on success.

"Since starting on The Voice I really have taken on and am loving the role of seeking and developing talent. It's been such a positive and rewarding experience for me to be able to do that on the show," Levine said. "To be able to do that is something I am excited about taking on outside of the show, through my label. I really look forward to finding the new talent that's out there now."

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