Dan Kanter has been Justin Bieber’s musical director for the last five years, and says he still can’t believe his dream gig. Over the summer, the Toronto-based guitarist has made frequent trips home to sit as a judge on YTV’s The Next Star – an Idol-type talent contest for JBs in waiting. Here, Kanter shares some of the secrets to his un-Beliebable success (including his best advice for you-know-who)
Even small projects have big pictures
The best advice I’ve ever received was probably from my father. I grew up going to a lot of musicals because my dad was a director of musical theatre. What he taught was to always look at the big picture of a show. Even when I’m just listening to music, I listen to the music and lyrics, of course, but I’m also considering the production, the musical significance of what I’m listening to. I’ve always been fascinated by how music works with lights, wardrobe, dancing. My friends in my high-school band used to make fun of me. We’d be rehearsing for a show and I’d say, guys – this is the moment where there would be a big explosion and they’d be like, we’re playing in the cafeteria. One of my favourite Bieber songs is called Down to Earth. I remember the first time Justin played it for me: It started with just a piano intro and instantly I pictured him sitting at this white grand piano that rose out of a trap door in an opera sort of fog. I can’t believe we were able to do it, but we were. It was awesome.
Every moment is the moment
I’ve been thinking a lot about Dead Poets Society over the past few days and of my 11th-grade teacher, who taught me “carpe diem.” I’m the kind of person who’s always looking ahead to the next thing, always thinking about new projects, new challenges. That being said, it’s so important to be able to be in the moment and love the moment that I’m in, whether that’s the recording studio, writing lyrics, on stage. On the last Bieber tour we would always play this song, One Less Lonely Girl. My part on guitar is somewhat simple, so I really made an effort to look out and scan each section of the crowd and really think about and appreciate where I am in this very moment.
Don’t get distracted by the bright lights
The best advice I’ve ever given to Justin is to put the music first. He is such a great musician, performer, writer. It can be easy to get distracted by the bright lights, but ultimately he’s in it for the music, not the fame. I think for him there are so many distractions – not just lately but for the rest of his life he can’t escape the media. We talk about how it’s so important for him to remember the kid in his bedroom posting videos on YouTube and dreaming about this. I think at the end of the day, his fans love him the most for the music, even more than his charm and good looks. That’s what’s going to live on, not the things you read in the headlines.
Belieber and proud of it
I’m totally proud if people want to identify me as Justin Bieber’s musical director or Justin Bieber’s guitar guy. That’s who I am. I’ve been with Justin for a half decade now and the team is like family. I’m lucky that this has given me the opportunity to do other stuff – being a judge onThe Next Star, making music with Bob Weir from the Grateful Dead. Being the front guy is not something that I ever wanted. I care about being respected by people in the industry, but I love being behind the scenes, being the silhouette and still getting to be such a part of everything. The fans, the Beliebers, are really the best. Even when they’re singing Baby outside the hotel all night and I get no sleep, I still love them.
Source: The Globe and Mail
Justin is the top performer on the Social 50 chart since its launch, and the third-biggest act on the Billboard 200 in the past five years. He is also named the #1 artist that could successfully pull a Beyoncé by dropping a surprise album and having it do well.
When Latimore stopped by PopCrush, he sat down with us and opened up about hitting the studio with Justin Bieber and much more. Check out the interview below
Int: Speaking of the music video, we saw on your Facebook the other day that Justin Bieber surprised you while filming.
Jacob Latimore: He did. Yeah, he did stop by. It was crazy. I texted him, and then he didn’t text me back, and I was like, “Ah, it’s getting late, he’s not coming,” and then I guess a few people on my team were like [whispers], “Don’t tell him, don’t tell him.” And he just arrived. It was crazy. He watched me doing my thing. It was dope.
Int: That’s awesome. So were you really surprised to see him?
Jacob Latimore: Of course! Yeah, I saw him the night before at the studio, we were just chillin’, and I played the record for him. He was like, “It better be dope. If it’s not dope, I’m gonna tell you.” And I’m like, “Aw, no!” I was worried about it, because if he didn’t like the song, I’m gonna be depressed at the video shoot tomorrow. I’m gonna be like, “[Sigh] Bieber don’t like the song.” He ended up liking it, came to the shoot, showed love, so it was cool.
Int: Did he give you any advice?
Jacob Latimore: He encouraged me to write more music. I’ve been getting into that right now and just getting really into my own music and writing and stuff like that. He was giving me good advice on how to start writing, just start writing it down, and just write what you feel.
Int: You’ve talked about wanting to collaborate with him before. Did you work on any songs together in the studio?
Jacob Latimore: Nah, well, he played a few records for me to see what I liked. I kind of told him what direction I was going… We gonna work soon, we gonna work soon. It’s just a matter of time.
DETAILS: As a 25-year-old newbie manager, you discovered a 12-year-old Justin Bieber on YouTube, persuaded him and his mom to move to Atlanta, and, despite constant rejection, got him a record deal. What role has chutzpah played in your career?
Scooter Braun: It’s funny—since I was a kid, I’ve been convinced I was going to die at 32. So I believed I needed to achieve as much as I possibly could while I’m young. And I had my 33rd birthday last week—I made it! The week before, I’d told friends, “Get doctors on call.”
DETAILS: Were you a well-behaved kid?
Scooter Braun: I did a lot wrong. A lot. I was arrested for speeding and fighting… . [Laughs] My father used to call Justin “my revenge on you,” because I was such a difficult kid.
DETAILS: How has your relationship with Bieber changed over the years?
Scooter Braun: I go through the same experiences as someone raising a child, just with heightened sensitivities, because when he does something dumb, it’s front-page news. When you’re young, you idolize the older man in your life and do anything he says. As you get older, you want to be more independent. You’ve got to let them make the mistakes, then be there to help them when they fall.
DETAILS: Of course. But one of the mistakes he makes could be fatal. How do you balance that risk?
Scooter Braun: If I was the parent, I’d have been there for the first 13 years. I’m picking up the pieces. He’s 20. Ariana Grande, who I also manage, is 21. When they make a mistake, I have to literally look them in the eye and say, “It doesn’t matter that you pushed me away, I’m here to help you now.” I said this to two of my artists the other day, as a joke: “Maybe it’s time for me to have my own kids and stop raising other people’s poorly.”
When I first walked in and saw Justin recording I was in shock that I was actually there. I couldn’t believe that I was in the same room as the same person I have looked up to for quite a long time. He was recording his new music and it sounded so amazing!
When he came out to meet me I didn’t cry and freak out but I was happy and content that I was with my idol. It ended up to be the best day of my life and an experience of a lifetime. I will never forget that day and I thank everyone who helped it happen.
Cody Simpson has defended Justin Bieber following his altercation with Orlando Bloom, putting his misdeeds down to youth.
Speaking on Australia’s ‘The Morning Show’, he said: “Obviously we’re all young and he gets himself into some stuff sometimes. He’s a person I’d go to for everything. He’s like a big brother.”
And despite the Bieber’s controversial antics — which have also included numerous run-ins with neighbors over his wild partying — Cody insists he does a “lot of good” for people.
“He has the world in his hands as he does a lot of good as well. I’ve got all good things to say,” he said.
Source: ONE News
Justin Bieber made one lucky fan’s dreams come true Sunday night in Los Angeles when he took her as his date to the Young Hollywood Awards.
The 10 year-old Make-A-Wish recipient, who is battling cancer, took photos with the pop star on the red carpet and later joined Bieber onstage to accept the Champ of Charity Award, where he gave her a kiss and the award as she stood in front of the audience in shock.
Bieber, despite his bad-boy reputation in Hollywood, was being honored with the Champ of Charity Award for having granted a record 226 wishes through the Make-A-Wish foundation.
Make-A-Wish president and CEO David Williams previously said of Bieber’s contribution:
“Despite his relentless schedule, Justin has been genuinely committed to granting wishes since the very beginning and a strong supporter of Make-A-Wish.”
“(He) understands the impact on a child of a wish-come-true and how it can create positive changes in their outlook, help them feel better — and even influence their health.”
Canadian pop star Justin Bieber squeaked into the top-third of this year’s Forbes list of the World’s Most Powerful Celebrities.
The 20-year-old Ontario native ranked No. 33 with estimated earnings of $80 million, thanks mostly to cash from the tail end of his last world tour.
Bieber has the highest social-networking profile on any of the stars on the list, according to StarCount. He is also the only Canadian to make the list and the second-youngest.
It seems like yesterday when Justin released his 3rd album, “Believe”, to the world on June 19, 2012 (although early release occurred in Australia, Germany, and Ireland on June 15th, 2012). Beliebers had anxiously anticipated this release in particular because it was not only new music, but offered a new inventive sound to accompany his deeper toned voice.
Entertainment Weekly even claims that Justin’s album, “[Is] a prime showcase for his new voice and burgeoning mettle, proving that Bieber isn’t just maturing, he’s evolving.”
With such positive reviews, the “Believe” album soared to #1 in 16 countries within the first week and maintained hold on the top 100 in the charts for the year (one of which was the notable Billboard top 100 chart.)
The album was also nominated for 4 awards for the complete album, along with hit singles being recognized in award shows by nominations such as Boyfriend (10 nominations), As Long as You Love Me (1 nomination), Beauty and a Beat (2 nominations), and All Around the World (1 nomination).
Justin also created the Believe Tour so that his Beliebers could see him perform some of “Believe” live. With the setlist containing All Around the World, Take You, Catching Feelings, Love Me Like You Do, She Don’t Like the Lights, Die In Your Arms, Out of Town Girl, Be Alright, Fall, Beauty And a Beat, As Long As You Love Me, Believe, Boyfriend, the tour excited Beliebers for a chance to see their idol live.
If Beliebershappened to miss the Believe Tour, Justin also released his Believe documentary to help give them a chance to relive the Believe album through his movie.
In addition to it’s success, the Believe album will be honored today on the Second Anniversary of it’s debut. Happy Two-Year Anniversary of “Believe!”
Justin Bieber is apologizing for telling a racist joke when he was 15 … blaming it partly on his age.
Justin tells TMZ, “As a young man, I didn’t understand the power of certain words and how they can hurt. I thought it was ok to repeat hurtful words and jokes, but didn’t realize at the time that it wasn’t funny and that in fact my actions were continuing the ignorance.”
Justin goes on, “Thanks to friends and family I learned from my mistakes and grew up and apologized for those wrongs. Now that these mistakes from the past have become public I need to apologize again to all those I have offended.”
Justin continues, “I’m very sorry. I take my friendships with people of all cultures very seriously and I apologize for offending or hurting anyone with my childish and inexcusable mistake. I was a kid then and I am a man now who knows my responsibility to the world and to not make that mistake again.”
And Justin says, “Ignorance has no place in our society and I hope the sharing of my faults can prevent others from making the same mistake in the future. I thought long and hard about what I wanted to say but telling the truth is always what’s right.”
Justin ends with this: “Five years ago I made a reckless and immature mistake and I’m grateful to those close to me who helped me learn those lessons as a young man. Once again….I’m sorry.”
You can’t accuse Justin Bieber of ignoring his fans.The pop star jumped a fence outside his recording studio after spotting a group of girls waiting for him on Tuesday night. Eager to please, the 20-year-old hopped the six-foot metal railing to pose for pictures with the girls and sign autographs.
Bieber wore a white T-shirt and jeans with a heavy gold chain slung around his neck during the impromptu meet and greet. On being asked if he would pose for pictures by a waiting paparazzi he obligingly agreed, but added: ‘I just wanna say hi to my fans.’ Bieber appears to be attempting to improve his reputation after a recent series of bruising encounters with the public.
Justin Bieber‘s latest movie, “Believe,” opens on Christmas Day, but unlike his previous film, this one isn’t about his rise to fame.
Instead, it’s an attempt to repair the singer’s image by showing how his fame often leads to situations that would be challenging for any teen to figure out, much less a teen who’s living under the eye of the media, 24/7.
Specifically, the film promises to offer some insight into all the bad press that Bieber has gotten in the past year, from confrontations with paparazzi, to accusations of breaking the law and drug use, to the constant ridicule over his refusal to wear a shirt in public places. According to Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun, there won’t be any dancing around these subjects — the film will deal with them “head on,” he told ABC News Radio.
“You know, we actually canned the film for six months so we could address it,” Braun told ABC News Radio about the negative headlines about the singer. “Because we realized we couldn’t put out a fluff piece with everything that happened. You’ll see in the film how we address it, because once it starts getting out of control, 90 percent of it isn’t true. You can’t address everything.”
As a result, Braun said that when they go to see “Believe,” fans will see Bieber portrayed with “complete vulnerability” and as “a human.”
As Braun explained, “I think people forget that it’s a 19-year-old kid, trying to figure it out.”
That sentiment is echoed by Jon M. Chu, the director of “Believe,” who was also behind the camera for “Never Say Never,” Bieber’s concert film.
“I wanted the world to see Justin the way I know Justin, warts and all, because I think if you see him, you’ll see the kid in there,” Chu told reporters at the film’s premiere. “You’ll see the kid turning into an artist. You’ll see him making choices about taking over his empire; some wrong and some right choices.”
Added Chu, “I think you’ll see a kid who’s sometimes confused about those issues and sometimes knows exactly where he stands on it.”
Source: ABC News
"I’m going to take my time (next year) to really find my sound as an adult," says Bieber, 19, in an e-mail to USA TODAY from the Philippines, the final stop of his 15-month Believe tour. "That takes time and patience, and I’m grateful I have the ability to step back and focus on my creativity."
Adds his manager and friend, Scooter Braun: “Next year will be less about the career. I expect Justin to be doing things like snowboarding, backpacking, working on his charities, but more often than not, he’ll be in the studio. Music is his therapy.”
In his e-mail, Bieber writes: “The last year has not been the easiest for me, as I think is probably the case for all teenagers. I’m just trying to grow up and figure out who I am, but I have to do it in front of the world.”
"Like anyone in the public eye, the things I do are scrutinized and sensationalized, which makes things more difficult. But it’s a side effect of my career and getting to do what I love every day, so I’m handling it the best that I can. My family, my team and my pastors have really helped me get through things."
"…sometimes I rebel to try to show my independence, and that can be hard on everyone. But thankfully, the people around me love me and are understanding. When I make a mistake, we talk about it and try to learn from it."
"I just try every morning to wake up and tell myself what I’m thankful for and make that day great," Bieber says. "I want to touch the world in a positive way and help people, and that is what I’m focused on."
Source: USA Today
Last week, Billboard tweeted that Justin Bieber was set to close out his Music Mondays promotion—releasing a new song a week on iTunes for 10 weeks—with the Dec. 9 release of his latest, a collaboration with Chance the Rapper called “Confident.” “Who is closing out?” tweeted Bieber in reply.
Billboard has now learned that there’s indeed more news — a lot of it — coming from camp Bieber.
Bieber will be creating a temporary collection of all of his Music Monday tracks called “Journals” that will also include a couple of videos and the trailer for the “Believe” theatrical release.
“Journals” will only be available on iTunes beginning Dec. 16 and ending Jan. 2, 2014.
Back in 2011 Justin claimed the Make-A-Wish “Chris Greicius Celevrity Award” for his dedication to making wishes come true.
Now, only two years later Justin has granted the most wishes in the program and in the Music industry…all at the young age of 19!
"He shines as a Make-A-Wish supporter. He’s grown from a new celebrity wish granter into an ardent and innovative philanthropist," said Make a Wish.
His wish count continues to grow from the record of 300+ from John Cena of which he surpassed.
Scooter tweeted his praises along with Make-A-Wish tweeting about it also.
Hopefully now people can see the true Justin Bieber: a genuine, kindhearted 19 year old who truly cares about his beliebers.