If you wondered just how personal Justin Bieber would get on his chart-topping new album, Believe, the answer is pretty personal. But much like an episode of “Law & Order,” the names and events have been altered to protect the innocent.
This is most obvious on his baby-mama-drama track, “Maria,” on which Bieber addresses a paternity allegation made against him by a fan. In real life, Bieber faced such an allegation, and it eventually faded away. If you ask anyone in the singer’s camp, however, the track isn’t exactly about a girl named Mariah Yeater.
“I think he has [a lot of personal songs on the album]. I think ‘Be Alright’ [is]. I think a lot of the album is very, very personal, but I think for tabloid purposes ‘Maria’ sparks a lot of interest,” his manager, Scooter Braun, told MTV News. “But I don’t know why. It’s not about anyone. It’s just a story. You know, legally it’s not about anyone.”
It might not be about someone with the initials “M” and “Y” directly, but Braun does say it speaks a lot to Bieber’s celebrity status. Every move he makes is a headline, a topic that has been dissected in pop music for decades.
“Michael [Jackson] had this amazing record called ‘Billie Jean’ and [producer] Rodney Jerkins, Justin and I had a conversation about kind of what had Justin been through the last year and just how people talk and make up stories about him,” Braun explained. He added that getting all the facts about a Bieber-related story isn’t always necessary because “when it comes to Justin Bieber the hype alone is enough to get you CNN.”
That theory ties into the paternity claim, which quickly escalated into one of the biggest stories of Bieber’s young life, regardless of the truth of Yeater’s claim. “There was a story that took place that was so false that it should have never even seen the light of day,” Braun said. “And it ended up becoming international news. He has to deal with that kind of stuff and he wrote a song kind of addressing it and it’s a pretty awesome song. And it’s our ‘Billie Jean.’ ”