Justin Bieber released a music video for his new hit “Lonely” highlighting Benny Blanco in which the pop star investigates the dark side of childhood fame.
The now 26-year-old singer skyrocketed to celebrity status at 16 years of age with the release of his album, “My World 2.0” in the wake of being found on YouTube at age 13.
The visuals for “Lonely” highlight youthful actor Jacob Trembley playing Bieber during his young years. The video portrays how isolated the pop star felt growing up in the spotlight.
“Maybe when I’m older it’ll all calm down, but it’s killing me now/ What if you had it all but nobody to call, maybe then you’d know me/ Cause I’ve had everything, but no one’s listening, that’s just (expletive) lonely,” Bieber sings. “Everybody knows my past now, like my house was always made of glass/ Maybe that’s the price you pay for the money and fame at an early age.”
Bieber thought about how cathartic creation the song and music video was for him.
“When [@itsbennyblanco] and @finneas showed me this song to be honest it was hard to listen to considering how tough it was to get through some of these chapters,” he wrote. “I went into the studio and sang through it which wasn’t easy but started to really see the importance of telling this story!”
Bieber has previously revolted against the fact that it was so difficult to balance achievement and a normal childhood. He said it led him down a dark path of addiction.
“I started doing pretty heavy drugs at 19 and abused all my relationships,” Bieber said on social media in September 2019. “I became resentful, disrespectful to women … hiding behind a shell of a person that I had become.”
Bieber has previously uncovered his psychological health issues, including depression, anxiety, and ADHD. The Canadian-born performer said he was “still unfulfilled” in spite of all the cash and awards.
“Have you noticed the statistics of child stars and the outcome of their life?” he added, explaining the pressure put on a developing child and having everything handed to him.
“So by this point I was 18 with no skills in the real world, with millions of dollars and access to whatever I wanted,” Bieber said. “This is a very scary concept for anyone.”
He said he began mishandling medications to adapt to the huge ups and downs from touring the world over.
“I felt like I could never turn it around,” he said. “It’s taken me years to bounce back from all these terrible decisions, fix broken relationships, and change relationship habits.”