Justin Bieber's Guitarist Dan Kanter Leaves Purpose Tour

Justin Bieber’s Longtime Guitarist Dan Kanter Reveals He’s Not On The ‘Purpose Tour’

Justin Bieber’s longtime guitarist and musical director, Dan Kanter, has announced he will not be in the lineup on the Purpose World Tour, which kicks off on March 9 in Seattle, Washington.

Kanter, a formally trained Canadian multi-instrumentalist, has played alongside Bieber since the start of the then teen singer’s professional career in 2008. Amid weeks of rumors about Kanter’s (and others’) involvement on the Purpose World Tour, Dan shared a slew of tweets on Sunday (March 6) confirming the news.

“Thx to everyone for asking. It’s true I won’t be on this tour. JB, the team, & I will always be family & support each other. It’s all love,” the father-of-one began. He added, “I’m so happy for JB’s deserved success, and proud of all the work we did in the last year to promote Purpose and get this tour ready…”

“I wish him and all of Team Bieber the best of luck on the road,” Kanter continued. “I’m excited about the future and what’s coming next in my career. Can’t wait to share it. Stay tuned!!”

Dan ended his tweet spree with a message for Beliebers. He wrote, “Beliebers are the best!!! I LOVE you guys!!!”

A new guitarist, Julian Michael, has replaced Kanter on the tour.

About three weeks ago, Michael posted an Instagram picture with Justin and expressed gratitude about his new position in his caption. Some fans have since posted welcome messages for Michael.

The Purpose Tour band’s new music director is bassist Brian Jamal Harvey. He announced his role on Sunday via Instagram.

Kanter isn’t the only long-termer who won’t be touring with Bieber. Stage manager James Stassen (affectionately known as “Scrappy”) let fans know he is not joining the 64-date trek early Monday morning in three tweets.

Looking back, a scroll through Scrappy’s Twitter reveals he stopped tweeting and retweeting about Purpose rehearsals in the first week of February.

Justin Bieber
Dan, Scrappy, and Justin backstage during the (2012-13) Believe Tour [Image via Instagram]

Kanter shared his last specifically rehearsal-related tweet in the same week, but he did tweet effusively about Justin’s Brits performance (on February 24), for which he accompanied by the singer-songwriter James Bay.

Fast forward to March 1. “Scrappy” responded cryptically to a fan’s excited tweet about the upcoming Denver tour stop, replying, “not quite.” Stassen changed his Twitter bio the same day from an icon of the Biebs to a cartoon pic of a dog. He also removed a description of himself as Bieber’s stage manager.

On Saturday, March 2, multiple Bieber fan Instagram and Twitter accounts shared posts on Scrappy and Kanter’s non-participation in the Purpose Tour before both men officially revealed the news.

According to LinkedIn, Chris Gratton is the extensively experienced new production manager. He had the same role on Ariana Grande’s Honeymoon Tour between 2014-15. Before that, he handled Kanye West’s Yeezus Tour and did the same for The Smashing Pumpkins from 2006-2013.

Other star names on Gratton’s resume include P Diddy, R Kelly, Guns N’ Roses, Kelly Clarkson, Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park, Tracy Chapman, P.J. Harvey, and more.

Once the word was out, some Bieber fans took to Twitter and Instagram to post messages to Kanter and “Scrappy” over the weekend. For fans who have followed the “Sorry” singer’s career since his “Baby” days, they are attached to team members. Their messages range from hyper-emotional, to philosophically pragmatic, and bemused.

And in the opposite corner:

To the bemused.

Meanwhile, in the real world, band and production changes are completely commonplace in the music industry. Reasons can be anything from a decision to update the musical and sound direction, costs and logistics, personal chemistry, or a choice to inject fresh blood into an artist’s live performances.

On Sunday, Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun, ramped up excitement for the tour in videos. One was filmed at the Purpose Tour rehearsal in the Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, Oregon. The team has been there since Thursday. Another showed Braun larking around backstage. Everyone has now arrived in Seattle ahead of opening night.

Kanter and Scrappy will evidently missed by many. But the show goes on and may now be even better than fans could have hoped for. Just take a look below.

Are you ready?! #PurposeTour

A video posted by Purpose Tour | 3 days left (@purposetour) on

Are you ready? ???? #PurposeTour #21Days

A video posted by Purpose Tour | 3 days left (@purposetour) on

???????????????????????????????????? @stixxtaylor #purposetour

A video posted by iambharv (@iambharv) on

[Photo by Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images]

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