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October 2017
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Justin Bieber: From Despised Teen Heartthrob to King of Pop To-Be

If anyone embodies the spirit of 21st century pop culture, it is Justin Bieber. Since his early teen-years, he has been on the cover of every magazine, newspaper, website, and definitely not all shed in good light. Besides his fanclub of hysterical teenage girls that call themselves ‘Beliebers’,  Justin Bieber has not particularly been a much-loved personality. After being a target of mocking, hatred & criticism for many years, Bieber decided to step it down a notch and remain in silence for over a year. But after the release and extreme success of his single ‘Where Are You Now’ last summer, there seems to be no return. The ‘Biebs’ is back.Justin bieber

The 21 year-old Canadian born singer released his new album ‘Purpose’ November 13th of this year, and in just a week it had broken several records & hit charts. His song ‘What Do You Mean’ has earned him the most: it was just the 23rd song ever to chart at #1 of Billboards Hot 100 right after its release, and it makes Bieber the youngest male to ever debut this #1 position. Moreover, ‘What Do You Mean’ was downloaded 337,000 times in a week, a record previously held by Drake and Taylor Swift. What makes the album even more fascinating and admirable is that Bieber co-wrote all and co-produced most of the songs on the album, something that cannot be said of many recording artists in the current day and age.

So why is he suddenly so wanted & famed? What has made his performances so well-received, while before he was totally unrecognized as an professional artist, and his music was never applauded by the general public? Robin Strand, DJ & producer, says that a new type of music is what is to blame for Bieber’s recent success. ‘‘Before, he mainly targeted teenage girls with catchy tunes and soft lyrics. Now, Justin has gotten more into the tropical/house sphere through his fellow producers Jack Ü and Skrillex, producing much more mature songs that everyone can relate to.’’ Producers like Jack Ü and Skrillex have unexpectedly taken Bieber into their musical realm and both admitted to being surprised by his talent, calling him a true ‘virtuoso’.

Because the Justin Bieber that we speak about now, is definitely a long way from his former image of a spoiled baby-faced teenage star with too much money, too much fans, and too little hair on his face and break in his voice. Especially the male public was not too fond of him. A Dutch 18 year-old former Bieber-critic, Kevin, explains. ‘‘He had everything that any guy of his age could want. Pretty girlfriends, loads of money, meeting the coolest celebrities. But he was not your typical masculine pop star. He was 16, but he did not grow a beard, he was not muscled, he had a voice like that of a little girl. How could someone like that ever be praised by so many girls? I guess it was pure jealousy.’’

And his looks were not the only things that were pissing the public off. In 2014, Bieber illegally drove a Can-Am vehicle on the sidewalk, nearly hitting a disabled woman. In Paris he hit a paparazzo in the face, and in Florida he was arrested for driving under influence, drag racing & smoking marijuana. He pleaded guilty and had to take an anger-management course shortly after. 2014 was not the best year for Justin Bieber, and it gave the public all the more evidence to step on his ego.

After all of that, came radio silence. Nothing was heard from Bieber after his announcement of a ‘brief break from music’ in December of 2014. He apologized for his bad behaviours on The Ellen DeGeneres Show by saying that he ‘‘did things that might have not been the greatest’’, and he endured a painfully funny ‘Roast’ on Comedy Central in the first half of 2015. And finally, in July, the big blast of his song ‘Where Are Ü Now’ set off Biebers career with a new beginning. His management took advantage of Justin’s activity on social media to run a campaign with countless celebrities promoting his song ‘What Do You Mean’ until its release. Now, with six of his songs in the 40 highest charts of Billboard’s Hot 100, it seems like there is no way back for Bieber.

Justin Bieber is going to be a name that we will be hearing more from very soon. His embrace of electronic dance music, in combination with his extremely talented voice is definitely going to bring him a lot in the future. And apparently, the public feels the same way. ‘I never thought that I would say this, but I guess I’m turning into a Belieber’, Kevin admits. His songs, but also his lifestyle seem to have left a good impression on people who before despised anything that Bieber stood for. From much criticized teen heartthrob to glorified style icon: we should look out for Justin, because he might well be the new King of Pop.

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