“Justin Bieber booed at Canada’s Juno Awards” read Sunday and Monday’s headlines, as repetition of the 20-year-old’s booing at the country’s equivalent of the Grammys unfolded.
As Bieber’s big win was announced by Canada’s Olympic women’s curling team, Huffington Post Canada reported “resounding boos” filled the MTS Center.
The news quickly spread on social media where it was greeted with delight by detractors and dismay from the singer’s fans.
But interestingly, Bieber’s Juno booing competes with Ryder’s stirring defense of him as the big story from the event.
The “Stompa” singer co-hosted the show and was crowned Artist of the Year and delivered an impassioned argument as to why Bieber deserved his Fan Choice award while accepting her Songwriter Juno.
“Justin Bieber is an amazing musician and he deserved every bit of that award because he’s been working his a** off his entire life,” Ryder told the crowd.
“And we need to support how awesome he is. I think he’s great. I’m not just trying to kiss a** I think he’s great. He’s amazing,” she added.
Looking at footage as Ryder spoke, some in the crowd appeared shocked that she offered support to Bieber at what was undeniably – ‘her’ moment.
The 31-year-old explained her reasons in response to a series of tweets sent by Bieber’s manager, Scooter Braun.
“much love to @serenaryder. to stand up for someone else, someone u dont know in your own moment was true class. you deserve all your success,” Braun tweeted Monday.
He added, “so from someone u dont know congrats to u @serenaryder. Im not only a fan of you as an artist but as a human being. im sure the kid agrees.”
Braun ended, “@serenaryder = pure class and true bravery and grace. beyond impressed.”
Roughly two hours later Ryder replied to Braun, writing,
“@scooterbraun I had to say something. Justin deserves every bit of his success.He rocks- so do u! Much respect- thanks for the shoutout! Xo.”
Meanwhile, other big winners on the night, sisters Tegan and Sara, said backstage that the boos were “not very Canadian.”
“I think that Justin Bieber is actually a very talented artist, and I think a lot of people just like to pile on and sort of make fun of him, but we have to remember that he has a mom and a dad and a grandma and a grandpa, and he’s actually talented,” Tegan said.
“He’s been famous since he was a little kid. He’s made some mistakes, but God knows Sara and I have made actually way worse mistakes when we were teenagers and we weren’t famous.”
As for Bieber – who was spotted returning to Toronto from Montreal on Sunday – he took to Twitter some time after the show to thank fans, posting a reflective comment a day later.
As long as u are with me I will never leave you — Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) March 31, 2014
Know who you really are not what people tell you you are. http://t.co/FWaZUHcqi1 — Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) March 31, 2014