Think of Kid Rock and the name Justin Bieber doesn’t naturally spring to mind.
But, the rap-rock cowboy and fourth annual “Chillin’ The Most Cruise” bossman recently took time out of his redneck-activity-filled day to share his thoughts on the Canadian’s not quite immediate future.
Speaking to GQ Magazine, the Rebel Soul star’s view on Bieber’s next likely steps was somewhat ominous.
“It’s just a matter of time before someone puts a huge line of cocaine in front of Bieber,” the 42-year-old said. “And he’s going to be like, ‘Yes! This is (bleeping) awesome!'”
For those concerned about the 19-year-old’s fast-paced lifestyle (as opposed to those simply circling), Rock’s opinion isn’t so easily dismissed.
That’s not to say Bieber’s descent into ‘Devil’s powder’ hell is inevitable, rather that numerous celebrities are on record as saying drugs were either offered to them, or that it was their own choice to take them and how accessible they were in the celebrity bubble.
Last year, just before he turned 18, Bieber told V Magazine:
“I’m not going to try to conform to what people want me to be or go out there and start partying, have people see me with alcohol. I want to do it at my own pace. I don’t want to start singing about things like sex, drugs and swearing.”
Later adding: “Now that I’m on top, everyone wants to bring me down.”
Fast forward to January 2013 when pictures surfaced of Bieber with rappers Lil Twist and Lil Za in a Newport Beach, California hotel smoking what appeared to be a joint, and a string of actual and alleged incidents on and off his Believe tour that followed, and the prognosis for the teen star does seem grim.
The bright-eyed kid who burst onto the world stage in 2009 is now more often than not pictured looking out at a scrum of flashbulbs with a haunted look in his eyes. Although that may be down to his clear antipathy toward paparazzi and, of late, the press, it is noticeable.
Rock’s comments may be blunt but they also echo recent comments made by Channing Tatum and others.
The Magic Mike star toldVanity Fair: “I worry about Bieber, man. That kid’s wildly talented. I hope he doesn’t fall down into the usual ways of young kids because it’s so hard for someone to be responsible when they’re not asked to be.”
But perhaps writing off Bieber’s future as a cocaine-fueled hedonist is too hasty. Celebrities such as will.i.am, Will and Jada Pinkett Smith, director Jon M. Chu, One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson, Michael Buble, and manager Scooter Braun, note the teen’s commitment to giving back, close family support system, and a behind-the-scenes focus in the face of daunting scrutiny and often deliberately inflated criticism.
Over at Pop Dust, Nate Jones insightfully observed that Bieber’s public chafing at widespread talk of his “imminent” fall from pop grace should more accurately be termed a meta-meltdown. In other words, a reaction to the fact that people are saying he’s having a meltdown.
Although this past week Bieber received heat after his leather-clad appearance at Miami’s Heat-Pacers game, amid reports of alleged paparazzi clashes and yet more mutterings of mutiny in his Calabasas, Calif., neighborhood, there has also been light with the shade.
The teen singer unveiled artwork for his new, upcoming single “Heartbreaker,” punched a new record as the first person to hit 40 million followers on Twitter, confirmed the news that he and Braun have signed up to Virgin Galactic’s spaceflights, flashed an idea to make a music video in space, was formally congratulated for “Baby’s” (streaming enhanced) new status as the highest certified single in history, revealed additional Believe tour dates for Asia, New Zealand, South America and Australia, and will shortly be returning to the studio.
Notwithstanding the proven fact that (alleged) marijuana usage isn’t a gateway to the hard stuff, perhaps the best hex to Kid Rock’s prediction is the simplest: Despite the public lamentations, for Bieber, safe harbor may be found when it’s “all about the music.”