By Laura Ferreiro
Usher has nothing but love for his protégé, Justin Bieber. When the charismatic R&B star appeared on "The Ellen Degeneres Show" Tuesday, Ellen asked him to talk about the 19-year-old pop star whose career he helped launch.
Usher said that Bieber – whose recent antics include scuffling with photographers, allegedly driving his Ferrari out of control, and confrontations with nightclub bouncers – is simply young and inexperienced, and it's incredibly difficult to live a life where your every move is captured on camera.
"Key word, you started with young," Usher said, responding to Ellen's comment on Bieber's age. He noted that Bieber's friends and family all hope that he'll continue to mature. "But, you know in this day and age of social media, there is no privacy and that kind of trial-and-elimination period is kind of done in front of a camera."
Usher went on to point out that this problem isn't unique to Bieber, and that many young celebrities have to find a way to cope with constantly being in the public eye. "Many, many other celebrities are a product of [this], and some come out bad, some come out good. I am hoping for the best.
"I don’t look at it as a negative though," he added. "I look at it as a teenager. A teenager having to live his life in front of a camera."
Here's hoping Bieber does grow up a bit before some serious damage is done.
Meanwhile, Usher is setting a good example for Biebs by joining the lineup for Wednesday's Healing in the Heartland: Relief Benefit Concert, organized by Blake Shelton to aid victims of the recent Oklahoma tornadoes.
Usher will join fellow "Voice" judge Shelton, as well as Miranda Lambert, Rascal Flatts, Darius Rucker, Reba McEntire, and Vince Gill as headliners.
The star-studded benefit concert will air live on NBC at 9:00pm EST/PST Wednesday (May 29). It aims to raise awareness of the tragedy and raise funds for the United Way of Central Oklahoma May Tornadoes Relief Fund, which provides relief for victims and will work to rebuild communities that were devastated by the tornadoes.