I walked away from Justin Bieber’s concert last night with mixed feelings. I purchased tickets one hour before the show at the First Niagara Center in Buffalo. My 6-year-old daughter and 9-year-old son were smiling the second the pop star took the stage. Bieber was not. He had a blank look on his face. In fact, he showed little emotion during the show. I don’t think he cracked a smile through the first four songs. He seemed to put little effort into the dance routines. It didn’t seem intentional. He looked exhausted. He sat on a couch and sang a few songs with an acoustic guitar, but much of the show was singing along to a track. At times, he didn’t even bother to lip sync. It was almost as if he forgot where he was. The Canadian singer has made headlines regularly since he was discovered on YouTube. Recently, though, Bieber has attracted attention for some bizarre behavior. He was photographed roaming shoeless around Boston. Then, in late March Bieber announced he would cancel meet and greets at his concerts. “The pressure of meeting people’s expectations of what I’m supposed to be is so much for me to handle and a lot on my shoulders. Never want to disappoint but I feel I would rather give you guys the show and my albums as promised,” Bieber said. At one point during last night’s show Bieber started to give a heartfelt speech “Everyone is going through something,” he said before being interupted by a fan who told him his shoe was untied. He knelt on the stage, tied the lace and lost his train of thought. He couldn’t get it back. The audience squealed when he stopped talking and the music started playing. We were about to hear another billboard hit. Bieber appeared frustrated as he walked up the stage. Overall, it was an entertaining show. There were some spectacular special effects and incredible backup dancers. There is no denying Bieber is talented. I am not ashamed to admit I enjoy his music. I heard countless teenagers raving as they walked out of the arena. My children were on cloud nine. I purchased the tickets one hour before the show and scored incredible seats. They danced along, cheered and laughed. It brought me such joy to see them that happy. At the same time, I was bothered by the show. It’s not because Bieber was a lazy, arrogant pop star. I saw a kid on stage who is unraveling and, as a mother, I wanted to hug him. He is traveling from city to city with his “Purpose Tour,” but seems to be struggling to find his own purpose despite ‘having it all.’
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