poo bear, justin bieber

Justin Bieber’s Secret Song Writing Weapon Reveals All

Words: Josh Rakic
Photography: Dustin Downing

Poo Bear lifts the veil on music’s biggest secret — the life of the phantom hit songwriters.

Behind every great album is a great songwriter. Jason ‘Poo Bear’ Boyd isn’t just the songwriter behind Justin Bieber’s record-making 2015 album, Purpose, but a multiple Grammy Award-winning talent who’s been penning platinum-selling hits since 2001.

You mightn’t know his name, but you’ll know his songs, because Poo Bear’s the melodic genius behind hit tracks for the likes of 112, Usher, Ludacris, Chris Brown, Big Boi and more. In new documentary, Afraid Of Forever, which features a rare behind-the-scenes look at the workings of Hollywood’s music industry, Poo Bear lifts the veil on music’s biggest secret: the life of the phantom hit songwriters. Watch it on Red Bull TV.

 

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But his career very nearly didn’t happen. In fact, the humble kid from a broken Connecticut family was lucky to survive into adulthood after a tornado ripped through his family home and rendered him, his brother and single mother homeless.

He was nine years old when his mother relocated the family to Atlanta, Georgia, where he quickly became entwined in the budding R&B scene as a singer and honed his skills as a songwriter while performing with groups in high school.

Poo Bear

With his father long since having left the family, Poo Bear – as he’s known for his resemblance to the cartoon character in both form and kindness – was determined to take care of his family. From the age of 13, he vowed not to sleep more than four hours a night in an effort to realise his songwriting dream, support his mother and hopefully encourage his father to return and show him the love he never enjoyed.

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Some 15 years later, Poo Bear’s achieved all but the latter. But staying at the top isn’t easy. It’s a 24/7 job to stay relevant in an industry so fickle, and with 2015’s Justin Bieber album a distant memory, some might think Poo Bear’s stock is waning. With his impending nuptials to fiancée Ashley and desperate to reconnect with his estranged father in time for the wedding, Poo Bear is justifiably afraid of what the future holds.

Will his fiancée do what his dad couldn’t and commit? How will his father react to his olive branch? And can he return to the top of a merciless industry that’s forgotten about him once already before? It’s these critical challenges ahead that Poo Bear fears most.

Poo Bear

In an effort to best remedy all, he does the only thing he knows how, and works hard. He takes to the studio with some of the the world’s best producers and artists in the hope of creating that next hit – from more than 500 songs written in six months – before the hourglass runs dry.

Featuring an in-depth analysis of the music industry as a whole by top songwriters, artists, critics and America’s highest profile record executives, Afraid Of Forever is a rare insight into the secret workings of the music world and unmasks one of contemporary music’s daily pressure to keep producing. 

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04 2017 THE RED BULLETIN

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