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German pop singer Maxim began playing music just after college, singing in various bands and eventually settling in Cologne, where he met his longtime producer Teka. Heavily influenced by reggae beats and styles, he signed with Cologne-based roots label Rootdown Records to release his self-titled debut in 2005. With his smooth voice and sunny beats, his debut went over well and he began to attract a following. He continued to develop this reggae-influenced formula on 2008's Rückwärts Fallen but began to skew more toward what he referred to as "urban pop" with his 2011 release, Asphalt. His fourth album, Staub, was released in 2013 on Warner imprint Downbeat Records. The album would prove to be both a commercial and critical breakthrough, yielding the hit single "Meine Soldaten." A live version of Staub was released the following year. For his fifth album, 2016's Das Bisschen, Was Wir Sind, Maxim continued to expand his sound in more of a modern pop direction. ~ Timothy Monger