Beware fake Justin Bieber CDs. No really, beware.
A prankster artist named Paz Dylan switched what appeared to be Bieber’s CDs of his 2012 Believe album, for his own music in big retail stores across Los Angeles.
According to the Associated Press, the 25-year-old electro-musician “planted 5,000 copies of an album that appears to be Bieber’s Believe, but actually contains a copy of his own CD at retailers such as Best Buy, Target and Wal-Mart on Tuesday, April Fool’s Day.”
Paz, who called the swap-out “meticulous” and sees the ruse as performance art, admits he was helped by artists frustrated over their inability to get their music stocked.
From photos of the wrapped CDs, to a consumer the disc looks exactly like the real Believe record, with a real bar code which meant it could be scanned at stores and bought. The fake record also had Bieber’s Believe picture on the cover.
But as anyone who bought the CD would have found out, the back cover revealed Paz’s own artwork. The disc itself is covered in pictures of pizzas, cats, and a dog “inside” a taco. The so-called ‘prankster’ record contains 13 songs from Paz’s electro-album, From the Bottom of My Heart to the Top of Your Lungs.
“We paid a lot of attention to detail because we wanted these to stay up on shelves as long as possible,” Paz told AP, while refusing to admit how much it cost to to produce the fakers, or for that matter, what he and his cohorts did with the original Bieber CDs.
“The general idea is that retail stores make it almost impossible for independent musicians to get their music in there,” he adds.
Elaborating, Paz went on, “I’ve always believed that retail stores can be the best outlets and ambassadors for independent music. They just choose not to be and sell the same recycled [expletive] We thought if they’re going to lock their doors to independent musicians — we’re just going to knock them down and get our music in there.”
The musician has pulled off a similar stunt before. Last year, he planted pictures of himself into the Grammy Museum in downtown L.A., hanging them next to Grammy winners Calle 13 and Maria Rita.
“I think legal repercussions are always a possibility when you do performance pieces,” Paz told AP. “Sometimes you have to take risks for your art.”
AP reports copies that they found copies of the fake Believes in a Target store in Burbank and Best Buy stores in West Hollywood and Culver City, but said a Wal-Mart spokeswoman said there had been no reports of the CD in their stores while Target said the company was aware of the matter and investigating.
The outlet asked Paz why he and his musos hit on Bieber’s CD. The prankster replied,
“The world won’t really miss a Justin Bieber record.”
Some might disagree.
(Photo: Bieber’s Believe CD artwork.)