Last Monday night I went to a Justin Bieber concert at the Staples Center. This was a weird experience for me because although I like Justin's music, leading up to the concert, I was not excited. Of course I was very appreciative for the opportunity to see such a talented performer in person, but the thought of being surrounded by thousands of screaming, bratty young girls was not something I was looking forward to.
When I got to the concert, my dread was reinforced by the fact that looking around, I saw clones. It seemed like everyone was wearing the same outfit- leather jacket with ripped jeans and white vans- or a variation on this. But then I looked closer and realized the majority of people in the venue were not young girls, they were people my age and older. There were even multiple couples on dates. They were not the annoying, screaming, bratty girls I imagined. This shows that Justin's fan base has really evolved along with his star image. When I later learned that Kanye West and Kim Kardashian were in the audience it made me think about how there is no way Kanye would have gone to a concert of the old Justin singing songs like Baby and Love Me.
The celebrities we like reflect our own values. If we liked Justin in his Baby days, that used to mean we were 12 year old girls who wanted Justin to marry us and had no real taste in music. But now supporting Justin associates us with his new star image of quality music and quality actions. This means that Kanye West can enjoy a Justin concert without criticism or shame and it is harder for his fan base to be bratty girls because Justin does not (or at least tries not) to demonstrate bratty behavior.
The moment that finally got me excited was when Justin's manager, Scooter came on stage and gave a small speech on homelessness in LA and said that a dollar from every ticket sale was going to help the homeless. This is an issue I really care about and this speech made me feel content knowing that my values were being reflected in the celebrity I chose to give my time and money.