If there’s one artist that connects fans of different musical genres together, it’s Justin Bieber. Arguably one of pop’s biggest chameleons, Justin Bieber has served up an incredible musical career that has picked up a new audience with each album. The world met him as the floppy-haired, adorable heartthrob that every teen girl couldn’t stop drooling over and we watched him transition into a genuinely talented artist that hipsters, dance lovers and R&B fans could all respect and enjoy.
Throughout his numerous phases, Bieber has always proved that he knows a thing or two about pop music. His talents in not only his vocal ability but songwriting and production have just increased as he moves further up the industry food chain, and his legacy continues to shine through in other artists. In honour of his 25th birthday, we do the awful task of choosing only 10 of Justin Bieber’s best tracks. It’s a hard job, but just thank us that you don’t have to do it.
When Justin Bieber stepped onto the scene in a boring grey zip hoodie and a swooshy bowl cut, pausing his video game to answer his phone call from Usher, the world had no idea about the Belieber storm that was about to hit them. But love it or hate it, this song is catchy as hell. Sure, it might be the most bubblegum thing you’ve ever heard, but the overall message is adorable and Biebs is too. While his talents definitely got better throughout his career, his ability to make us swoon always stayed the same.
This tune is a ‘Bieb-step’ powerhouse with an accompanying cinematic masterpiece of a music video and a collab from Big Sean, what’s not to love? A slightly more grown-up Bieber is playing the role of every teen girl’s fantasy and promising them his undying love, and he’s proving that not only can he be a teen hero but he also can dance like one too.
Possibly one of the most iconic collabs, a tiny eleven-year-old Jaden Smith joined the rising heartthrob Bieber to create a hit for Smith’s The Karate Kid and the result was massive. The tune is a bouncing pop dream that encourages kids to never give up and focus on their individual courage and confidence. Now how can we not celebrate that?
How can anyone forget the time where Justin Bieber’s computer was allegedly stolen and the ‘thief’ was threatening to release the personal footage, only to then be informed that Bieber was just pranking us all along and promoting his new song? Classic. The song really is a tune though and Biebs went all out on the collaborators. EDM stars Max Martin and Zedd produced the crunchy synths we can’t get enough of and Nicki Minaj’s saucy verse definitely bumps up the track to a whole new level.
This track was the official turning point of Bieber becoming a fully-fledged adult pop star and leaving his teen heartthrob status behind. Teaming up with arguably the hottest EDM artists at that time, Diplo and Skrillex, Bieber opened himself to a whole other audience and totally won their hearts. This song was a gamechanger and it will probably be held as one of the best songs either of the trio has made for the rest of their careers.
This honest, introspective piece is one of the best songs Bieber has ever written and by far the most personal. It tells his story from diving into stardom at a young age till now. There hasn’t been a moment since his career where the world hasn’t been watching Justin Bieber but as he sings himself, we really don’t know him at all. This track is Bieber admitting his weaknesses and his mistakes and he eggs us to keep watching him, because he’s finally discovered the person he wants to be and he can’t wait to show us all.
The bluesy elements in this track hit us all hard and we haven’t really recovered. This song is a melting, sexy, sultry piece of magic that really showcases Bieber’s musical talent. The lyrics, which were written about his on-and-off again love Selena Gomez, brought a poetic brush of romance to pop and R&B fans everywhere rejoiced in Bieber’s harmonies. This was Bieber’s prime swoon moment.
The complete opposite of All That Matters, and basically most of Bieber’s other tracks, this was a hit for so many reasons. The bite in this song is incredible and it spreads a message that we’ve all felt ourselves at one point or another in our lives. Bieber definitely wasn’t holding back when it came to this song and the result ended in him gaining fans he probably never thought he would. Ed Sheeran is credited with most of the songwriting, but we’re pretty sure there’s some honest feelings from Bieber chucked in there. The ultimate hate song to an ex, but pulled off with so much grace and effortless finesse.
While Where Are Ü Now was a significant turning point for Bieber’s career, Boyfriend was definitely his first reinvention. Stepping out of his dreamy, boy next door persona with a spunky new haircut and threads, Bieber came dripping in swag and oozing sexiness with this tune. He was no longer begging to be your boyfriend but showing you why you wouldn’t want to miss out. With a new wave of confidence and a fresh attitude, Bieber was only sustaining his spot as a teen star and essentially, the man of your dreams.
A debatable pick maybe but definitely the most iconic of the list. This song really does have it all; a catchy chorus, a whipping rap verse, a cameo from Drake in the music video. Despite Bieber desperately trying to shake this song off his reputation, it still stands to be one of the biggest defining moments of his career. This song is a hella great pop tune, with Bieber’s innocent yet suave voice singing right to you and that damn good opening beat. It might be in there for questionable reasons, but this song is going straight to the history books.
Listen to all his best tracks here: