Justin Bieber hit 2015 with a bang after he was unveiled as the new face of Calvin Klein in the brand’s Spring 2015 Jeans and Underwear campaign.
Now, with apologies made and an upcoming roast, news of the singer’s highly anticipated new album, which he is reportedly working on with superproducer Rick Rubin, has arrived.
In a recent interview with Complex magazine, Justin’s manager Scooter Braun reveals the 20-year-old is “in such an incredible place right now, and he’s excited to share where he is with the world next [this] year.”
Braun teases, “It will shock some people and make others really happy.”
He also said Justin is ready to “be the man people want him to be,” and that his new music would have an “openness about what he’s learned in the last year.”
Scooter certainly had his work cut out over the last two years as the singer made mistakes and became a focus of tabloid scrutiny and public censure. However, the 33-year-old says Justin has made changes in his attitude and behavior and is ready to be himself.
And it looks like trying to emulate the late Michael Jackson is no longer on the menu.
“It’s funny, I talked to him about this today, and I feel like it’s not competition,” Braun told the magazine.
“When I was playing basketball in my backyard, I wanted to be Michael Jordan, because when you’re shooting the jumper in the backyard, you don’t want to be the sixth man.”
He adds,”With Justin, it’s Michael Jackson and careers like that. But as he becomes more and more of a man each day, the challenge for him is learning who he is.”
“But as he becomes more and more of a man each day, the challenge for him is learning who he is. He’s in such an incredible place right now and he’s excited to share where he is with the world next [this] year. It will shock some people and make others really happy. He’s ready to step up and be the man people want him to be, and he got there on his own time, like all of us did.”
He added, “So, right now, it’s less about Elvis and Michael, and more about him being the man he wants to be.”
Pressed for details on how Bieber could shock people, the manager said,
“It’s one, through his music, and two, through his candor, his openness about what he’s learned in the last year. Things get overblown, but sometimes he makes mistakes…”
Refusing to be drawn on any one incident, Braun was also clear that the Biebs will not be defined by mistakes but by how he has overcome them.
“Look, I’m not going to focus on anything specific, but the hardest part is being a little bit older [than clients], and their actions aren’t necessarily actions you’d [take].”
“Sometimes it’s frustrating because you think, ‘I could’ve avoided that’ or ‘I could’ve helped you get through that,’ but then you realize that you are the person you are because you went through it, and they need the opportunity to go through it too.”
“And if they do, you’re just supposed to be there to help them rise.”
“I’m not interested in the mistakes that people make. I’m interested in how they react to them. That’s what defines us as adults.”
“Being young, like Ariana [Grande] and Justin are, they will have opportunities to fall, and they will be defined by how they rise,” Braun insists.
After confirming to designer Karl Lagerfeld that he was ready to drop and new album and tour in 2015 in the music issue of V magazine in early January. A few weeks later, Bieber teased two music snippets on Instagram which could be from his new album, shortly after posing for pics in the studio with Rubin.
Justin captioned his photo “With the man Rick,” while Scooter posted, “Working on some history! @justinbieber – Rick and JB”.
Fast forward to now, a recent progress report on Bieber’s probation in his vandalism case was deemed good by a judge. It follows the singer’s apology video and two appearances on The Ellen Degeneres Show.
During his second spot, Bieber admitted he had done some things he was “not proud of” over the past few years, but was now “passionate about getting better and growing.”
It sounds like Bieber’s new album and new chapter will be worth waiting for.
To read more about Braun and Justin, see Complex’s interview.