Monday, May 23, 2011

Bieber Fever !

I am just off a flight on which I saw "Never say Never", the documentary about Justin Bieber.

With 2 young kids at home, I can't help to have heard of Justin Bieber, and to be honest, as a "pop music" lover, I have heard some of his music on the radio and found it quite catchy ... but don't let my kids know that !

This teenage phenomenon has spawned great passion from young kids today. He is either loved or hated ... with a passion!

I understand those who have become positively fanatical about him, but what has spurned the "hatred"? Perhaps it's just envy of his success ? Either way, whatever one feels about him as a person, a celebrity or a musician, he has to be admired for what he has achieved till now. This is not an example of easy success or a manufatured "star". Justin Bieber is a talent who is the product of a social media revolution. He was not found and promoted by any of the major record labels (in fact to the contrary, he had to fight against their resistance to sign and promote him). He was found through his home videos on You Tube and followed on Twitter.

He is now a massive sensation and at just 16 years old is a mega star, touring the world and playing to sold out audiences in venues like Madison Square Gardens. In my opinion that takes more than luck. It takes more than just talent also! It takes courage and a drive that should be congratulated and not underestimated.

In addition, he is still growing up (he's been doing this for a couple of years now), and his single mother and grandparents have done an admirable job of keeping him "normal" (or as normal as can be expected). He is being tutored on tour, so he has a complete education, and he is being taught some decent and basic humble habits and manners.

And to me, this is the most remarkable thing, to handle all of this at such an early age. He is a singer, a dancer, a musician and a role model and idol to some very young and impressionable young girls, and unwittingly that brings a whole new responsibility with it.

Justin Bieber is lucky in this respect. He comes accross as a rather sensible young man, perhaps because he is also surrounded by a team of caring individuals. I don't doubt that a number of them want their pound of flesh as well, but he seems to he more protected than exploited right now and I hope that continues!

It must be unimaginable pressure at times. There must be times when this boy just wants to be a boy, and although he has willingly chosen this life and this path, that doesn't make it any easier or mean that one can't sympathise with the challenges he must face every day.

So whatever the opinion on his music, personality, performances or celebrity status, don't knock him for what he has achieved and how he has achieved it. You don’t have to like him or what he does, but I for one wish him continued success and more importantly, continued good guidance and protection from those around him who profit from him.

Good luck Justin!

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