Scooter Braun, the man who accidentally discovered a 12-year-old Justin Bieber, when he mistakenly clicked on the then-YouTube sensation’s covers videos, recently sat down with Larry King to chat about topics including Bieber, Braun’s support for Hilary Clinton’s run on her presidential campaign, and his own professional ascent.
The 33-year-old music maven spoke candidly on the Biebs’ turbulent past two years, from which he now appears to be looking at in a rear view mirror. The Larry King Now interview comes amid the Canadian star’s comeback, ahead of his August 28-dropping new single “What Do You Mean?” and next studio album, which is set for release on November 13.
King, 81, kicked things off by musing on the well-documented pitfalls of early fame.
“Child stardom is difficult at best,” he said, adding, “First of all, it’s too much too soon.” He went on to probe Braun about Bieber, asking, “What was his problem?”
Braun replied, “I think soon he’ll [Bieber] talk about the exact issues he went through. And he’ll do it in this album that he has coming.”
Opening up about the 21-year-old, he elaborated, “But I think, you know, Justin didn’t grow up with the easiest background before I met time,” alluding to Bieber’s parents, who split up at a young age amid a reportedly volatile relationship.
Braun continued, “He’d gone through a lot a very young age, adding, “And I also think that when you turn 18 and you come into that kind of money.” He added that most people, “go through stuff at 18 and 19 naturally,” which Justin didn’t.
He explained,” And then, you know, for him to have that kind of access that young… You know, he struggled and he went through stuff.”
Touching on the public censure Bieber experienced, and still does, after previous run-ins with the law, and a resulting targeting by tabloids and certain media, Scooter said, “But I also think, you know, as a society we tell our youth, ‘We want them to succeed, we want them to succeed.'”
Braun continued, “Yet if youth succeeds, we immediately belittle that and say, ‘You don’t deserve it, you’re too young.’ And that’s a very mixed message.”
He revealed, “And I think that he went through real stuff. He’s a real person, and I’m very proud of him ’cause I have friends who went through stuff at 18, 19, and they don’t come out of it ’til they’re 30.”
Praising Bieber, he added, “And to see where he is now, a year later, happy and healthy, and you know having that perspective — I’m very proud of him.”
Later, King asked Scooter if he thought Justin’s past exploits were things that many other teens did, but didn’t attract attention because they weren’t famous.
To which, Braun admitted, “Well, yeah, I egged a house when I was a teenager. Yeah, the night before Halloween…”
Commiserating, King shared, “My son did. He egged cars.”
Referring to the Defcon 5 Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department raid on Bieber’s then Calabasas, California pad, five days after he egged a former estranged neighbor’s home, Braun noted, “I never had a SWAT team show up at my house to look for the eggs. That is the only thing that he’s on probation for. Egging a house.”
Braun also repeated his criticisms of the frequently fabricated and/or exaggerated Bieber-reporting by gossip outlets in recent years, and its effect on the singer’s behavior.
He said, “So I think that what happened is, as the media came down on him,” adding, “He started, you know…”
“There were so many things that weren’t true and he [Bieber] couldn’t keep up with them,” the manager recalled, adding, “And then he started to rebel against the lies and actually create reality.”
Scooter commended Bieber for coming through a high pressure period, telling King, “You know what? It takes a strong person to get through it and he’s a tough kid — and I think people are rooting for him now.”
On Bieber’s anticipated new album, King asked Braun whether it would be “revelatory” in regard to his previous troubles.
Scooter’s reply? “Oh extremely, he’s putting it all in the music… the new album.” He went on to add, “You know we have the new single’s about to come,” before insisting he would add King to the celebrity-assisted countdown for the “What Do You Mean?” promo.
Braun said he “had talks” with Bieber, advising him to “just put it in the music,” and told King that the singer “has bared it all” on his upcoming album.
In a third clip, Braun revealed a promise he claims he made to Bieber when the singer was around 14-years-old and “going through a really tough time.”
Recalling when he first met the then 12-year-old boy [in Stratford, Ontario], Braun told King that after deciding to sign the budding singer, his own mother called him and said, “Look if you’re going to do this, this isn’t just another artists, this is a child and you will have to take responsibility for that.”
The father-of-one continued, “And I made a promise to him that if he’d never sing again, I would never leave him, I’d always be there.” He went on, “And I think that’s an important promise to make to a kid. You have to stick to that.”
Referring to his own son, Jagger Joseph Braun, who was born in August this year, Scooter said, “I can tell you that I’m a much better father because he’s [Bieber] been in my life.”
Towards the end of the interview, Braun declared, “Through the goods, and bads, and the ugly — we’re family,” adding that becoming “close to someone [Bieber],” was necessary “when they’re at that point in their life.”
Meanwhile, Justin Bieber’s comeback countdown continues.
[Images via Getty Image / Facebook]