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Video: ‘Never Say Never’ to Bieber

Image: Justin Bieber, Matt Lauer
TODAY
Singing sensation Justin Bieber, right, peforms his “Matt Lauer impression,” crossing his legs in imitation of the TODAY anchor.
By
TODAY contributor
updated 6/4/2010 10:25:36 AM ET 2010-06-04T14:25:36

While “Bieber fever” heated up at Rockefeller Plaza Friday, tween idol Justin Bieber showed a talent not only for whipping a crowd of largely tween girls into a collective frenzy, but for doing impressions as well — specifically, of TODAY’s Matt Lauer.

Lauer spoke to the 16-year-old pop sensation just moments before he took the stage in front of thousands of teen and tween fans and their parents, many of whom had camped out for two nights for the chance to see him. Grinning, Bieber announced: “This is my Matt Lauer impression.” Then he crossed his legs, as Matt himself is wont to do during interview segments.

“I don’t know why I do that,” Lauer told Bieber as both sat cross-legged.

Bieber smiled and responded, “It’s fun, it’s cool!”

Fever pitch
Life is indeed cool for Bieber right now. In three years, the Ontario, Canada, teen has progressed from posting music videos of himself on YouTube to becoming a mammoth music phenomenon. His debut album yielded seven hit singles, and his follow-up, released in March, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard charts, making him the youngest artist to reach the top since Stevie Wonder in 1963. In the process, Bieber has inspired the aforementioned “Bieber fever” — he’s literally mobbed wherever he goes.

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Lauer asked him if he ever gets tired of the fan adulation, and the pushing and shoving that goes with it.

“Most of the stuff is good; I get to travel the world and live my dream,” Bieber replied. “But there’s definitely downsides, like I’m away from my family and friends.

“It’s pretty crazy that now I go out and I’m always asked for autographs and stuff,” he added. “But it’s kind of what I signed up for.”

Still, plenty of perks come with being one of the hottest music stars on the planet. One was a birthday gift last March from Bieber’s mentor, singing star Usher, who gave the 16-year-old a brand-new Range Rover — even though Bieber doesn’t yet have a driver’s license.

Given his hectic schedule, Lauer asked, has Bieber even had a chance to get behind the wheel?

“I was just in Atlanta and I was driving it around,” Bieber replied. “I have my permit, my mom was sitting right in the back. It wasn’t too cool.”

“Could you do me a favor?” Lauer inquired, tongue in cheek. “Could you tell [Usher] I’m going to turn 53 on December 30?”

Stoking the fever
Meanwhile, Bieber’s handlers aren’t waiting until he’s in his 50s to make the most of his fame: His new album, “My World 2.0,” was released just five months after his debut one. Many artists wait two years or more between releases.

While Bieber admitted the quick release was designed to “keep the buzz going” and that “I kind of do what I’m told,” he looks forward to the day when it’s his talent, not just the tween idol hype, that helps him make his mark.

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“I want to be an artist that doesn’t just come out with one song and they’re done,” he told Lauer. “I want to have longevity, have my fans grow with me, and not just be a teen artist but kind of move up and be an adult artist.”

But for now, Bieber is basking in the glow of adulation — and showing that, beneath the superstar glitter, he’s a teenage boy at heart. After getting his autograph, TODAY’s Natalie Morales asked him what he thought about while performing on the Plaza.

“I think about all the girls here,” Bieber said.

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Photos: Justin Bieber

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  1. On the beach

    Justin Bieber is seen hanging out on the beach in Miami, Fla., one day before his Jan. 23, 2014, arrest. (INFphoto.com) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Arrested

    Miami-Dade Corrections released Justin Bieber's mugshot the same day as his arrest, Jan. 23, 2014. The singer was charged with DUI, resisting arrest and driving without a valid license. (Miami-Dade Corrections) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Movie premiere

    Justin Bieber arrives at the World Premiere of "Justin Bieber's Believe" at Regal Cinemas L.A. Live in Los Angeles on Dec. 18, 2013. (Richard Shotwell / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Hug it out

    Justin Bieber hugs a young survivor of Super Typhoon Haiyan in Palo, Leyte province on Dec. 10, 2013. Bieber sang to and played basketball with young survivors of the Philippines' deadliest typhoon. (Str / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. From above

    Justin Bieber performs at the Barclays Center in New York on Aug. 2, 2013. (Jamie Mccarthy / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Thumbs up

    Justin Bieber performs at Bercy arena in Paris, March 19, 2013. (Francois Mori / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Love ya' mom

    Justin Bieber, right, kisses his mother Pattie Mallette as they arrive at the 40th Anniversary American Music Awards in Los Angeles on Nov. 18, 2012. (Jordan Strauss / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. The height of fame

    Canadian pop star Justin Bieber performs onstage at the 2012 Billboard Music Awards held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on May 20, 2012. (Ethan Miller / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Socially acceptable

    Bieber accepts the award for Top Social Artist onstage at the 2012 Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas on May 20, 2012. (Ethan Miller / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Courtside cuddle

    Bieber kisses girlfriend Selena Gomez during the NBA basketball game between the San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Lakers in Los Angeles on April 17, 2012. (Paul Buck / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. A drop in the bucket

    Bieber gets slimed after accepting the award for favorite male singer onstage at Nickelodeon's 25th Annual Kids' Choice Awards in Los Angeles on March 31, 2012. (Chris Pizzello / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Still worth screaming about?

    A Justin Bieber wax figure is unveiled at Madame Tussauds in Berlin on March 19, 2012. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Yes, he Cannes

    Bieber arrives at the Cannes festival palace to take part in the NRJ Music awards ceremony, in Cannes, southeastern France, on Jan. 28, 2012. (Lionel Cironneau / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. All in the family

    Bieber, second from right, joins, from left, Prince Jackson, Blanket Jackson, Paris Jackson and Katherine Jackson after the hand and footprint ceremony honoring musician Michael Jackson in front of Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood on Jan. 26, 2012. (Matt Sayles / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Mic check!

    Bieber holds a microphone in front of the mRobo Ultra Bass as he unveils the portable speaker and dancing robot at the TOSY Robotics booth at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on Jan. 11, 2012. (Ethan Miller / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Let's have a ball

    Bieber performs in New York's Times Square during the New Year's Eve celebration on Dec. 31, 2011. (Charles Sykes / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. Holiday spirit

    Bieber, right, sings "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" with, from left, first lady Michelle Obama, Sasha Obama, Malia Obama, President Obama, Jennifer Hudson and Victoria Justice at the annual Christmas in Washington taping on Dec. 11, 2011. (Jacquelyn Martin / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. Hey, Slick

    Bieber and girlfriend Selena Gomez attend the 2011 American Music Awards held at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles on Nov. 20, 2011. (Jason Merritt / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Having a laugh

    Bieber, center, performs with singers Redfoo and SkyBlu of LMFAO onstage at the 2011 American Music Awards in Los Angeles on Nov. 20, 2011. (Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. As his 'World' turns

    Bieber performs during the last concert of his "My World" tour in Caracas, Venezuela, on Oct. 19, 2011. (Leo Ramirez / AFP - Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. True Beliebers

    Bieber fans react during a concert at Morumbi Stadium in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on Oct. 18, 2011. (Nacho Doce / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. Young love

    Bieber and his girlfriend, actress Selena Gomez, arrive at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE in Los Angeles on Aug. 28, 2011. (Christopher Polk / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  23. Get your motor runnin'

    Indy Car driver Danica Patrick, left, and Bieber appear onstage to present Best Team at the 2011 ESPY Awards at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles on July 13, 2011. (Kevin Winter / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  24. Smells like teen spirit

    Bieber attends a lauch event for his new Justin Bieber fragrance at Macy's Herald Square in New York on June 23, 2011. (Jamie McCarthy / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  25. Time for some sun

    A shirtless Bieber escorts Selena Gomez after stepping on the beach while in Hawaii on May 23, 2011. (Splash News) Back to slideshow navigation
  26. Download this one

    Bieber accepts the Digital Artist of the Year award onstage during the 2011 Billboard Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Sunday, May 22, 2011. (Ethan Miller / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  27. Lifting spirits in Japan

    Bieber fist bumps with a girl from northeastern Japan, the area devestated by the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami at an event at the U.S. Ambassador's residence in Tokyo on May 18. In Japan for several concerts, the 17-year-old Canadian teen idol spoke briefly with nearly a dozen of children and exchanged messages. (Yuriko Nakao / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  28. Under the spotlight(s)

    Bieber performs onstage at Acer Arena in Sydney, Australia, on April 28, 2011. (Mark Metcalfe / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  29. All the world's a stage

    Bieber performs on stage during the first night of his UK tour at National Indoor Arena in Birmingham, England, March 4, 2011. (Steve Thorne / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  30. Date night

    Gomez is on the arm of Bieber as they arrive at the Vanity Fair Oscar party at Sunset Tower in West Hollywood, Calif., on Feb. 27, 2011. (Craig Barritt / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  31. Hoop dreams

    Bieber, right, drives around former NBA player Mitch Richmond, left, during the first half of the 2011 BBVA All-Star Celebrity basketball game as a part of the NBA All-Star weekend in Los Angeles on Feb. 18, 2011. (Danny Moloshok / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  32. He ought to be in pictures

    Bieber poses for photographers as he arrives for the premiere of the film "Justin Bieber: Never Say Never," at the O2 Arena in London on Feb. 16, 2011. (Luke Macgregor / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  33. New music meets old

    Bieber and Ozzy Osbourne posed on the set of a "Tron"-themed commercial for Best Buy, which ran during the Super Bowl on Sunday, Feb. 6, 2011. Bieber was just 12 in 2007 when his mother first posted a video to YouTube of him singing. It was that exposure that eventually launched his fame. (Christopher Polk / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  34. Young man, young fans

    Bieber visited New.Music.Live to promote his film, "Justin Bieber: Never Say Never" at the CTV HQ building on Feb. 1, 2011, in Toronto. (George Pimentel / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  35. Oh, say can you see?

    Bieber donned 3-D glasses for the premiere of "Justin Bieber: Never Say Never." (Lucas Jackson / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  36. Owes it all to Mom

    Bieber and mom Pattie Mallette are shown in a scene from "Justin Bieber: Never Say Never." Mallette raised him as a teenage single mom in low-income housing. The singer does maintain contact with his father, who married another woman and had two children. (Paramount Pictures) Back to slideshow navigation
  37. Hey! I'm in 3-D!

    The 2011 3-D documentary "Justin Bieber: Never Say Never" contains footage of the singer as a child as well as concert and other more current footage. (Paramount Pictures) Back to slideshow navigation
  38. Roses are red

    Bieber performed at the Q102 Jingle Ball at the Susquehanna Bank Center on Dec. 8, 2010, in Camden, N.J. (Jeff Fusco / Getty Images Contributor) Back to slideshow navigation
  39. Viva Espana

    Bieber poses during the presentation of his album 'My Worlds The Collection' in Madrid, Spain, on Nov. 29, 2010. Bieber plans two concerts in Spain in spring of 2011. (Javier Lizon / EPA) Back to slideshow navigation
  40. Plenty for everyone

    Bieber, right, posed with Usher backstage at the 2010 American Music Awards held at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live in Los Angeles on Sunday, Nov. 21, 2010. Bieber took home four awards. (Michael Caulfield / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  41. Little big man

    Bieber won artist of the year during the 2010 American Music Awards in Los Angeles on Nov. 21, 2010. (Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  42. Buckets of fun

    Bieber performed at the KFC YUM! Center in Louisville, Ky., on Nov. 10, 2010. (Stephen J. Cohen / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  43. Do these make me look smart?

    Bieber posed for a portrait while promoting his new book, "Justin Bieber: First Step 2 Forever," in Los Angeles on Sunday, Oct. 31, 2010. (Matt Sayles / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  44. By the white of the night

    Bieber performed at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Oct. 25, 2010. (Kevin Winter / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  45. Face the law

    Bieber guest starred as Jason McCann, a troubled teen who is faced with a terrible decision regarding his only brother, during an episode of "CSI" on Thursday, Sept. 23, 2010. (Sonja Flemming / CBS) Back to slideshow navigation
  46. The YouTube sensation

    Bieber, seen on April 24, 2010, in Sydney, Australia, first came to fame when his mother uploaded videos to YouTube of him singing. A musical marketing executive clicked on one of them -- reportedly by accident -- and the teen was eventually signed to the record label of R&B star Usher. Born in 1994 to a teenage mom who raised him alone while working low-paying jobs, the singer has come a long way. His first full studio release, "My World 2.0," debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart. (Brendon Thorne / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  47. May-December friendship?

    Bieber's devoted fans reportedly threatened reality star Kim Kardashian, left, after the two were photographed together at the White House Correspondents' Association dinner pre-party in Washington on May 2, 2010. Bieber took to Twitter to tell his fans to calm down. (Larry Busacca / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  48. Dare to dream

    Bieber took part in a bungee jump at Auckland Bridge during his one-day visit to New Zealand on April 28, 2010. (Sandra Mu / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  49. Fans get out of hand

    On Bieber's 2010 spring Down Under, his fans occasionally ran into trouble. Several young fans were crushed during crowd surges and Bieber had to cancel one show. (Graham Denholm / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  50. Up past bedtime

    Bieber appeared on the April 10, 2010, episode of "Saturday Night Live." The singer played a high-school student in a class taught by Tina Fey. Fey's teacher character constantly fantasized about Bieber's character, a student she described as "a dreamy Christmas elf" who looked like "a baby bunny sniffing a tiny flower." (NBC) Back to slideshow navigation
  51. Bye-ber? Bee-ber? Bay-ber?

    Bieber performed during the Easter Egg Roll on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington on April 5, 2010. He has performed at the White House twice. President Obama mispronounced the singer's last name as "BYE-ber" (instead of "BEE-ber") before a Christmas performance in 2009. Obama's daughters, Malia and Sasha, probably could have set him straight. (Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  52. Space-age shoes

    Bieber arrived at Nickelodeon's 23rd Annual Kids' Choice Awards held on March 27, 2010, in Los Angeles. He sang his hit song "Baby." The show also held a contest, and the 13-year-old winner walked with Bieber down the orange carpet, attended his rehearsal and watched the awards show. (Michael Buckner / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  53. Ryan, Michael and Justin

    Ryan Seacrest, right, and Bieber prepared to watch "Captain EO" with more than 500 fans at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., on March 26, 2010. Contest winners from all over the country joined Seacrest and Bieber for a private event at the theme park to celebrate the release of Bieber's latest CD. (Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  54. Tip-toe time

    Bieber danced on his toes while performing at the 2010 Nickelodeon Upfront Presentation in New York on March 11, 2010. (Bryan Bedder / Getty Images for Nickelodeon) Back to slideshow navigation
  55. Is this France, or Russia in the winter?

    With his head wrapped up against the winter chill, Bieber met fans at Citadium Store in Paris on Feb. 22, 2010. His appearance was cut short by police after a large group of fans swarmed the area. (Julien M. Hekimian / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  56. Guys who wear glasses

    Bieber performed a free concert presented by KIIS-FM at Nokia Plaza L.A. Live in Los Angeles on Feb. 13, 2010. (Angela Weiss / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  57. Helping Haiti

    Singers Chris Brown, left, Bieber, Sean Kingston and Monica posed backstage at the BET SOS Saving Ourselves -- Help for Haiti benefit concert and telethon at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami on Feb. 5, 2010. Bieber answered phones on the donation line and also performed. (Frank Micelotta / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  58. It's Bieber's 'World,' we just live in it

    Bieber performed at the "We Are the World 25 Years for Haiti" recording session held at Jim Henson Studios in Hollywood, Calif., on Feb. 1, 2010. Bieber sang the opening line, which was sung by Lionel Richie on the 1985 original. When that version of "We Are the World" was released in 1985, Bieber was still a decade away from being born. (Kevin Mazur / WireImage) Back to slideshow navigation
  59. He likes older women

    Singer Ke$ha and Bieber spoke onstage during the 52nd annual Grammy Awards held at Staples Center in Los Angeles on Jan. 31, 2010. (Kevin Winter / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  60. No. 1 fan

    Bieber and his mother, Pattie Mallette, attended the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards at Staples Center in Los Angeles on Jan. 31, 2010. (Larry Busacca / Getty Images for NARAS) Back to slideshow navigation
  61. Bright-eyed teen

    Bieber arrived at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards at Radio City Music Hall in New York on Sept. 13, 2009. (Michael Loccisano / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  62. Kid with a dream

    Bieber is shown performing on the street in Stratford, Ontario, Canada, on Aug. 20, 2007. (Irving Shuter / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
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  1. Justin Bieber Spends The Day With His Dad
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    Above: Slideshow (62) Bieber: YouTube hit now a star
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    Slideshow (17) 2010 Toyota Concert Series
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