Justin Bieber seems to have put on the breaks after almost tarnishing a squeaky clean record with scandal after scandal shortly before and in the months following his 18th birthday.
You might remember that trouble began to make headlines when Maria Yeater filed a paternity suit against the pop-star, claiming he was the father of her then 3-month-old baby. When the news broke, Bieber fans everywhere were in mortal shock, and who would blame them, as their favorite wholesome crooner looked as though he was about to become a father. The scandal was nevertheless, short lived, as Yeater dropped the suit when Bieber’s attorneys threatened to sue the gold digger.
On March 1, 2012 Bieber celebrated his 18th birthday; and on the following day the pop star appeared on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” where he got a little surprise: a $100,000 Fisker Karma, from his manager Scooter Braun. The automobile bills itself as the first true electric luxury vehicle with extended range and the freedom to plug in or fill up. It was by all accounts, his best birthday to date.
Now with Bieber reaching adulthood, the teen singer chose to drop a very grown-up $10.8 million on a modern mansion in L.A. according to the Daily Mail.
It was becoming increasingly clear that Justin Bieber was beginning to reflect many of the characteristics of a grown up. In an exclusive interview with GQ’, the publication reported that the singer admitted occasionally drinking alcohol, before turning 18. Bieber is quoted as saying: “For me, it’s just like, I like to be in control of myself. I mean, I’ve had a beer, like, before… But I never get out of control.”
Bieber’s life seemed to be going as planned; a new $100,000 automobile, a beautiful girlfriend, Selena Gomez, standing by his side, the purchase of a $10.8 million home and to cap it all off the Daily Telegraph published a report indicating that Bieber had finished high school. “I’m free! It was hard doing school and work every day,” he revealed. The accomplishment is even more monumental when you learn that neither, Beyonce, Britney Spears, Lindsay Lohan or Jessica Simpson finished school once their careers took off.
And as if school wasn’t enough feathers in one’s cap, Bieber found the time in his busy schedule to spend quality moments with Championship boxer, Floyd Mayweather. Moreover, some reports suggested that the Canadian Idol took a few boxing lessons from the Champ.
As the month of May, 2012 began to wind down, Justin learns that Forbes business magazine has selected him for their front cover as a result of his investments in startup small businesses. You can say that this event highlighted a mature Bieber truly coming of age.
May 27, 2012 marked the beginning of the end of the long honey moon Bieber enjoyed as clean cut and impeccably spotless. The month had been marked by excitement and anticipation of Bieber’s June 19 release of “Believe” and his upcoming North American tour. Everyone involved with the singer’s career including fans saw Bieber Fever as ready to take the world by storm. However, little did they know that a different kind of storm was brewing, and it threatened everything that the pop singer had built over the last three years.
The first of several controversial events occurred during the late afternoon on Sunday May 27. The teen heart-throb allegedly took part in a violent altercation with a paparazzo outside of a shopping plaza in Calabasas California. The incident sparked the attention of law enforcement as the victim claimed, in a police report, that Bieber attacked him causing the photographer to be rushed by ambulance to a nearby hospital for medical attention.
Bieber may have thought the incident was simply a minor spat that would shortly go away; however, he was badly mistaken as the case was referred to the Los Angeles County District Attorney for possible criminal prosecution. Reportedly, if the teen idol is charged and convicted, he could face up to six months in prison. People who witnessed the clash allege that when the Photographer tried to snap pictures of Bieber and his girlfriend, a frustrated Justin snapped, and began to physically rough up the paparazzo. In the aftermath, the photographer complained of “pain to his chest” after being pushed away during the struggle with the pint-size pop idol, according to Sheriff Lt. Robert Wiard.
On May 30, Bieber suffered a minor concussion as he reportedly ran into a backstage glass wall in Oslo Norway, during a break in his performance. Bieber was truly passing through the heart of a vicious storm where circumstances appeared to become increasingly grim and unpredictable.
June would be equally puzzling for Bieber. He apparently stumbles and falls as several panicked aides rush to his side. His manager, Scooter Braun, said in a video that the “Boyfriend” singer was unconscious for four of five minutes after the fall.
As June began to wind down, Bieber appeared on the David Letterman show to promote his newest release “Believe,” but was stunned after revealing a new tattoo that Letterman was not impressed by the big block letters on the inside of his left forearm. An uncomfortable exchange started when Letterman asked; “is that a new tattoo?” “This is a new tattoo,” the 18-year-old responded. “I have just a couple.”
“Well, tell me that’s the last one,” Letterman said.
“Might be,” the pop star replied.
“No, no, it is,” an annoyed Letterman said. “Honestly, how does that help how you look to have a tattoo?”
“How does it not?” Bieber retorted. “It doesn’t help the way I look.”
As the singer began to explain the symbolic meaning behind his new design, Letterman cut him off and began grabbing at the singer’s arm, presumably pretending to rub the ink off.
“Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey! This is brand new!” Bieber said as Letterman pulled away. “Grandpas!”
Letterman poked fun of Bieber for getting a new tattoo.
Letterman then asked the “Baby” singer to not take his tattoo collection too far, while revealing the young star may be in more need of a history lesson.
“Do me a favor: don’t go nuts, you know what I mean?” Letterman asked. “Because more and more, you see the ‘mural’ and like the Sistine Chapel… it’s too much.”
Bieber, however, failed to understand Letterman’s reference to Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel in The Vatican and answered: “I’m not going for the 16th chapel look.”
As the audience erupted with laughter, a bashful Bieber sat in his seat unaware of his historical faux pas.
“Canadian high school!” Letterman quipped, before giving Bieber a fist-bump to lighten the mood.
It was a horrible interview for Bieber as Letterman appeared especially cantankerous over the pop star’s new body art.
More trouble began to stir during the month of June, as rumors began to circulate through a number of tabloid publications claiming that Selena Gomez was pregnant with Bieber cited as the father. Publicist for Gomez and Bieber both denied the pregnancy, which in the end proved to be untrue.
July would prove by far, the worst month the pop star had ever experienced.
Days after the 4th of July, Bieber was again on the radar of the Los Angeles police department. This time the crooner was pulled over in his flashy Fisker Karma for driving approximately 100 mph on the 101 freeway in the San Fernando Valley. Reports indicate that “At 10:45 a.m., July 6, CHP officers observed two vehicles traveling at a high rate of speed.” The officers conducted an enforcement stop on one of the two vehicles… [where they were informed that] the driver was identified as Justin Bieber.” After explaining to officers that he was being chased by paparazzi; “the 18-year-old pop superstar was then cited for speeding, while the other car, containing the alleged photographer, continued on its way.
The incident was now among a growing list of controversial episodes that seemed to soil the squeaky clean image that both Bieber and Skooter Braun had worked so hard to cultivate.
As a stunned Bieber tried to pull things together following the latest run-in with the Los Angeles police department, he was immediately surprised when Stacey Wilson Betts filed a $9.2 million lawsuit against the “Boyfriend” heartthrob in a U.S. District Court in Oregon claiming she suffered severe hearing damage at a Bieber concert two years ago when sounds during the concert exceeded safe decibel levels.
To Bieber, the last three months must have felt like an avalanche falling down with no end in sight. He was already engaged in a process of negotiating with the photographer that he had allegedly roughed up in May. Now he was facing a full blown lawsuit with millions of dollars at stake. The event capped of the worst three months he had ever endured.
As August rolled in, it appears to have brought in a comforting calm at a time when Bieber desperately needed a break from unforeseen calamity. It’s been quite month and quite a quarter for Bieber, as he now would get a time-out from the unrelenting pounding he had been taking since late May.
On Tuesday, August 21, 2012 he quietly completed vocals on his latest project as guest on “The Simpsons.” The singer, who wasn’t born when the animated Fox comedy launched, tweeted this afternoon: “just did a voice over for the SIMPSONS!!! #swaggy.” Though the tweet appears to have since been deleted, “Simpsons” exec producer Al Jean confirms that Bieber will indeed play himself in an upcoming episode. How exactly does he fit into the story? “He tries to get into a talent show that Bart is playing in and they won’t admit him,” says Jean, quipping: “Draw your own conclusions.”
Don’t expect a boatload of Bieber, though. “It’s a cameo,” notes Jean, “but all of his fans should watch every minute of the show, before and after he’s on.”
The episode, titled “The Fabulous Faker Boy,” is slated to air in 2013 as part of the 24th season, which kicks off Sept. 30 on Fox.
During Bieber’s latest period of calm, it looks like he and Selena were busy planning to move in together into the $10.8 million dollar home Bieber purchased back in March. It’d be a comfy, cozy place where they could decompress, not to mention a way to further their commitment. It could also be a hideout in which to hang and enjoy as an escape from the nights out where the paparazzi endlessly hound them.
Reports that vehicles were seen at Gomez’s home on Friday August 17, suggest that the singer/actress is looking to make a more permanent move in both her place of residence and her relationship.
Presently, Justin fans can breathe a sigh of relief following three heart pounding months of turmoil. To all the non-haters that would like to see Bieber succeed in all his endeavors keep praying as perhaps this latest storm that touched down near the end of spring 2012 has subsided, leaving Justin more humble and grateful than ever before. Let’s expect the next few years to produce a body of work reflecting the grace that managed to help him overcome the trials experienced during this period.
Contributor DiMarkco Chandler