High profile music producer Poo Bear, a.k.a Jason Boyd, is a major powerhouse behind Justin Bieber‘s new album and “Music Mondays” phenomenon. He is such a close friend to The Biebs, that they have been touring around the world together for the last six months and he’s even frequently featured on the singing sensation’s Instagram!
Celebrity Teen Scoop recently chatted with Poo Bear about the inspiration behind “Music Mondays” and why Justin is “probably one of the best-hearted people” he’s ever worked with. The renowned producer also shared a hilarious story about a time when Biebs shut down an entire block in Bangkok, Thailand just from walking into a Burger King!
CTS: Could you tell us what is it like working with Justin Bieber?
Poo Bear: “Yes! It is a blessing to be able to work with Justin, as he is a musical genius who understands music and what great music is. He doesn’t second-guess anything at all. It’s incredible working with someone who’s really confident and has a great ear. When we go into the studio, we come out with magic. It doesn’t happen with everybody, but Justin is really, really musically inclined. He understands and appreciates great music, and it’s really incredible working with him.”
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CTS: What inspired “Music Mondays?”
Poo Bear: “The ‘Music Mondays’ concept is something that’s never been done before. Justin wanted to do something that’s never been done before on iTunes, because most people release new music on Tuesdays. He said, “You know what, let’s do ‘Music Mondays’ and give the fans a song every week for ten weeks.’ Most people can’t put out a song every week and have the songs achieve the Number 1 spot, but the songs were that strong. Usually people can’t do it…it just doesn’t really work like that. They brought the ‘Music Mondays’ idea to iTunes, and iTunes responded with, “You know what? We’re going to let you do this for the first time in history. You’re the first person to do this.’ At first, it didn’t seem realistic until iTunes said, ‘Let’s try it! Let’s see how it works.’ Every week has been a huge success, as every song has gone to number 1. We’ve had 281 number 1 songs in the last five weeks. It’s never been done before in the history of music.”
CTS: What’s your favorite song that you’ve worked with Justin on?
Poo Bear: “That’s like asking , ’What is your favorite car to drive?’ [laughs] I’m going to be honest with you…I really love ‘All That Matters.’ I love a lot of the records he’s done, and ‘All That Matters’ is really special. All of his records are special, so it’s so tough to choose. All of the songs are incredible records, but ‘All That Matters’ really sticks out.”
CTS: How has Justin Bieber changed musically since this album and the last album?
Poo Bear: “His previous record was kind of appointed to him, as the music was delivered to him and he was a part of it. This album, his music had a really special place in his heart. He’s always wanted to sing R&B, because he grew up singing that genre and listening to Boyz II Men. R & B just always had a special place in his heart. This album is working and connecting so well, because he was born to sing R&B and I didn’t know that. When I first started working with him, I was just trying to get him to do pop. He said, ‘Man, I want to sing what you originally write. I want to do R&B.’ I had said, ‘Wow, I don’t know if the people are going to want you to do that.’ He was like, ‘I don’t care, I’m 19 and I want to record what I want to record.’ Finally, he started making his own decisions and we went in the studio and it came out incredible.
People were unsure at first but now everybody who hears the music are now connected and the songs are getting really good reviews. He took a sacrifice and took a leap of faith by completely changing his sound to a more mature and soulful R&B sound. I still feel like his music is pop but more R&B pop. It’s going to be popular. It’s a new sound for Justin, but he believed in it so much that it’s come across fantastic.”
CTS: How did you start working with Justin?
Poo Bear: “I met him organically at a birthday party in Vegas. He came over to my house for a birthday gathering for an artist named Twist. Justin and I just kicked it and hit it off. It had nothing to do with music at all. We just hit it off by being cool humans with each other and by having a mutual respect for each other. Over time, he found out that I’m a songwriter and started listening to my music. He’s said, ‘Now we’re recording these songs.’ I happened organically. Nobody put me with him, and nobody put him with me. It just happened from meeting him at a birthday party.”
CTS: We’ve seen you in some of his Instagram videos. What is it like hanging out with Justin in your free time?
Poo Bear: “He’s a nineteen-year-old, but, mentally, he’s like thirty-five. I was telling some people that there’s no way I could hang out and be on tour with him and write records with him if he was a nineteen-year-old, but he’s very mature. We get along really well and are so much alike. We finish each other’s sentences and know what each other are thinking. We’re really similar to each other and he is a great human being.
A lot people can’t just see him, and they only see what the media portrays him like. He’s a really good-hearted person and probably one of the best-hearted people I’ve worked in the industry as an artist. He’s humble and understands the level that he is at, but he is still humble and he’s still growing. He knows that he’s growing and he’s just a great person to be around. I’ve been on the road with him for six months now, all around the world, and it works because we really get along together. He’s a great person and his personality is crazy. We get along and we clicked without trying. It was effortless.”
CTS: Can you share a highlight or like a funny story from being on tour with him?
Poo Bear: “Yes! In Bangkok, he was tired of being in the hotel, so we decided to sneak out and go to Burger King. One of the ladies there said, ‘Oh! You look just like Justin Bieber!’ and I played along and said, ‘Man, everybody keeps saying that! Everybody says you look like the kid Justin Bieber.’ Finally, two other women figured it out, and they chased us. We were locked in a Mexican restaurant for about forty-five minutes. They shut the whole restaurant down. It was funny to see him try to wear a hoodie and sneak around Bangkok, Thailand and instead wind up up shutting down the whole street. They shut the whole block down and the police had to come out. He was like, ‘Man, I just want to be normal.’ Sometimes you can tell that Justin just wants to be a human. It’s tough sometime for him to go out and be that superstar that he is. He really just wanted to go to Burger King, so that was funny. The normal, average person doesn’t shut down the whole block just by going to Burger King.”
CTS: What’s one interesting or special thing about Justin Bieber that the fans might not know?
Poo Bear: “Something special that you might not know about Justin is that he can pretty much do everything. I’ve seen him play golf really well, I’ve seen him ride dirt bikes, and I’ve seen him play hockey. He’s one of those kids that is really great at whatever he does. I don’t think a lot of people know he’s that talented. He is able to play every instrument and be able to do everything at this great level. I don’t think people know he’s one of those kids. I call him ‘The Alien’ sometimes, because he can pretty much adapt and be a chameleon in any situation. A lot of people don’t know that, as they just see him as a great musician. They don’t know that he’s also a great athlete and a comedian. He’s just really great at everything. I noticed over time, and I was like, ‘Man, what can’t you do?’[laughs] Many people have never seen that side of him. He’s able to really play golf at a level where I had to ask, ‘Did you study this?’ He’s one of those kids who picks things up really easily.
We went to this Nitro place in Panama where you ride dirt bikes, and we did this activity that is kind of like snowboarding on the water. You had to step on this flat-board and hold onto a string attached to a boat, which pulls you through the water. He went to try that for the first time and everybody said, ‘Oh, he’s going to fall and hurt himself.’ The first time, however, he went back and forth and everybody said, ‘Wow, how did you do that?!’ He has a natural gift at picking up new things. It’s really crazy, and I’ve never seen anybody like that before.”
CTS: You also worked with P. Diddy in the past. Are you still in contact with him right now?
Poo Bear: “I see him from time to time, but he’s not someone that I talk to a lot. We speak whenever I do see him. As a teenager, I wrote a lot of hits for Bad Boy, so we have mutual respect for each other. I know him very well and I can call him. We see each other when we see each other, and we have the utmost respect for each other.”
CTS: What is up next for you and Justin Bieber?
Poo Bear: “We’re working now. He’s such a good person. I thought he’d kind of just take what we’re working on and hide me away like a secret. Instead, he’s said, ‘Pooh Bear, I feel like you’re a great artist and I feel like your personality is incredible. I want you to come out and be an artist. I want to get behind you and I force you to sing. I want people to hear you.’ So we’ve already started recording his next album, and he’ll eventually focus on me coming out as an artist. It’s a big deal. A lot of people don’t want their writers to come out, as they want to just keep us a secret and take all the music. Not him. So on top of being a writer, Justin and I are now talking about me coming out as an artist and releasing music. We’re talking about us just doing it together, with him behind me and pushing it. It’s really special that he believes in me that much. Nobody’s ever believed in me that much before in my whole life, so I’m really thankful for him.”
CTS: How did you get the name “Pooh Bear?”
Poo Bear: “When I was younger, my mom always made up names for me. My rel name is Jason, but she called me ‘Boomer’ or anything but my actual name. She called me Boomer, Ralphie, and then Pooh Bear. My friends made fun of me and started calling me Pooh Bear. Then one day in middle school, some of my friends were picking on me and a couple girls were like, ‘Oh we love that! It’s so cute!’ I turned from being embarrassed to embracing it and just saying ‘Okay, I’m Pooh Bear now. I lived up to it. So the name came from my mom. Women started saying ‘Hey I love that!’”