Duran, who hosts “Elvis Duran and the Morning Show” on Z100, quickly got to the elephant in the room.
“You know it’s always been about the music, and unfortunately over the last couple of years it was about other things, stories in the paper and this and that…” Duran said.
“These last couple of years have been a learning process for me,” Bieber acknowledged.
The “Believe” singer hasn’t produced an album in three years. Instead, he’s made steady tabloid headlines involving loutish behavior, violent outbursts, several arrests and a dalliance with drugs and hip-hop culture.
He later explained: “I mean, maybe I’m a bad influence, but for me I was like, ‘No, I’m going to do this until I feel like I shouldn’t be doing this.’ Maybe I was wrong, but that’s how I learn, and I feel like I’m much better for it.”
“You just can’t help feeling judged, though… I just have all these mixed feelings a out awkwardness,” he added.
Reflecting on his past, Bieber said he also became concerned about the legacy he wants to leave.
“It has to be on you. You have to make the conscious effort, because for me, so many times it was good people coming in my life and tugging at me, but I wasn’t ready.” He added, “They’re like, ‘Justin, come on.’ But I wasn’t ready to take that leap and be like, ‘Okay, this is what I want to change, this is who I am, and this is not who I am.’ It takes moments of clarity to be like, ‘Oh, that’s why I’m not like this. That’s why I shouldn’t do this.’”
“I’ve trusted people who I probably shouldn’t have trusted before and they’ve hurt my heart,” he said.
The radio interview coincided with the release of his new single “What Do You Mean?”
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