Off Air

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When I heard that JB had added an extra date for a concert in Birmingham, I took it as a sign. For a second, I could actually imagine myself being a part of the audience, singing and dancing to his songs. The tickets had started running low and I had to decide whether I should go or not. At first, I hesitated for a while but then I took the opinion of one of my best friends. He convinced me to go to the concert not because he is a fan of Justin but because he believes in music and its power. So I bought a ticket for the 24th of October 2016 show, and that is when the Purpose Tour experience began.
Justin Bieber was my first teen idol. I started following him since he made his very first steps in music at the age of 13. I always supported his career and indeed for some years, I used to be a crazy bieliber. When Biebs entered adulthood and started growing as a person, his personality somehow started changing in a way. Besides the fact that I may not agree with some of his life choices and actions, I never stopped being a fan of his music because I always admired his work as an artist. It is beyond any doubt that Justin Bieber is one of the world’s most successful pop stars with millions of records sold, thousands of fans and having received hundreds of awards through the years. He has been in the music industry for nine years and he is only 22 years old. Guinness world records included him in their annual book multiple times and in the 2017 edition, he managed to enter the book with eight different titles.
Biebs kept as ‘’company’’ for 2 intense hours. The heartthrob, opened the show full of energy by singing the first track of his Purpose Album, ‘’Mark My Words’’. He was casually dressed in a hoodie, jeans and sneakers. The audience started dancing when songs such as ‘’Sorry’’, ‘’What Do You Mean’’ and ‘’Where are you now’’ came up. Old hits were also performed such as ‘’Boyfriend’’, ‘’Baby’’ and ‘’As long as you love me’’ which brought back memories from the past. I was emotionally moved when Bieber sang ‘’Life is worth living’’ and ‘’Purpose’’, songs that he wrote with Jason Boynd based on his own life experiences. He also showed his skills in drums and guitar where he performed solo. ‘’Cold Water’’ and ‘’Love Yourself’’ were the 2 hits he chose to play on the guitar in a different version than the original tracks. He was unbelievable and the fans could not keep their eyes off stage. I was impressed by the team of dancers which was almost during the whole show on stage performing. As for the stage design, the stage was spread in different parts of the arena so that Biebs could walk through it and come closer to his fans. I was also thrilled to see all the special effects and moving lights which in combination created a very mystical atmosphere. When JB performed ‘’I’ll Show You’’, he entered a moving glass box which with the presence of lights and special effects would turn matte. At that point, Justin had disappeared as the audience could only see the lights spinning on the glass box.

During his concerts, Bieber loves to take a break from singing to chat and connect with his fans. Many fans look forward to these few minutes to listen to their favourite popstar talking to them while others cannot control their excitement and they constantly scream. A week before this concert, Justin performed in Barclaycard Arena Birmingham. When he took his break to talk to his fans, the screaming was so loud that the situation went out of control. Biebs lost his temper because he felt that he was not being heard and that is when he said: ‘’ If, when I’m speaking, you guys could not scream at the top of your lungs. Is that cool with you guys? The screaming is just so obnoxious’’. Ouchhh Biebs that was kind of a horrible thing to say to your fans. After leaving Birmingham, he went to Manchester Arena for 3 concerts. In one of these concerts, fans started booing him because he was talking for way too long as some people consider. JB reacted aggressively, he dropped the microphone, stormed off stage and refused to perform. After a couple of minutes he returned on stage and explained the reason he reacted this way. He said: ‘’ The reason while I was getting upset earlier was because I travelled across the world to come here and I dedicated my life to performing and bring smiles to people’s faces. I felt that people were not giving me the same respect back and it hurts a little bit that’s why.’’ I really tried to put myself into his position for a few minutes and see how I would respond in a situation like this one. I understand that he has a very difficult life both with its advantages and disadvantages and like everyone else you can have bad days but that does not mean that you are allowed to act this way. His fans have been supporting him for years and I am sure there was a better way to say what annoyed him without offending the fans. You have to take control of your life, take responsibility for your actions and be prepared to confront any consequences.

When he returned to Birmingham for this extra concert in Genting Arena, I did not really know what to expect during his speech. At the beginning, I felt that he was trying to avoid interaction with the audience because of the previous two incidents. Normally, singers greet their fans after their first or second song. Justin firstly talked half an hour after the show had started. Half way through the show, when he was about to start his big speech, he apologised for his behaviour lately. He once again said that he is in a continuous tour, he is under a lot of pressure and these few moments that he has to talk to his fans he wants to be respected. It seems that we have to respect that because he has actually been under pressure for almost 10 years of his life and fans should have known better about his likes and dislikes when he performs. Then he picked up another microphone and gave it to people from the audience so that they can ask him questions. Some of the questions were ‘’ Which one was your favourite hairstyle? , ‘’Will you be my baby’’ and ‘’Can I take a picture with you’’? The last question was the trickiest one and did not get a good response from the audience. Six months ago, JB posted a picture on Twitter which was a text that said that he will stop taking pictures with fans. The reason behind that is because once, some fans asked for a picture as if they were entitled to take one just because they bought his album. Justin said that this incident made him feel like a zoo animal and from that moment he decided to stop taking pictures with fans.
Close to the end of the show when he performed ‘’Purpose’’, he wanted to share with his fans the meaning of Purpose Tour and how important it is to him. Biebs confessed that for a while, during his career, he felt that he had lost his purpose. For people who have lost their purpose or for those who have not discover it yet, he wants to encourage them to find it. He wants to make people believe that there is hope, there is a light at the end of the tunnel and the best is yet to come ahead of you. He said: ‘’Everybody has a purpose in life and if you have not found yours yet, have faith’’. It was one of the best concerts I have ever been to and one of the greatest memories that I will never forget.
Thank you Justin for those wonderful moments.