On Oct. 17, Justin Bieber brought the vulnerability while making an appearance on Saturday Night Live. The "Sorry" hitmaker, who last appeared on the show back in February, made the show an emotional one with two of his most recent heartfelt tracks. Fans loved Justin Bieber’s SNL performances of "Holy" and "Lonely," which showed the singer getting visibly emotional at several points.
Bieber, who previously teased that his Sept. 18 release of "Holy" was the start of a "new era" for him, kept his SNL rendition simple but evocative. The track, which references his love for his wife Hailey Baldwin and God, clearly had the singer in his feels as he pounded his chest and closed his eyes while performing. Bieber, who was joined by his "Holy" collaborator Chance the Rapper during the performance, appeared to be overcome by emotion at the end and stayed hunched over with his hands on his knees. At the end of the emotional song, Chance was seen hugging Bieber as the show headed into commercial break.
The 26-year-old also gifted fans a rendition of his new single "Lonely," which tells the story of how he skyrocketed to fame in his early teens and all the pitfalls of that. While performing the new single, Bieber again kept it simple, walking through SNL‘s studio and to the stage to join Benny Blanco, who was playing piano.
Both tracks hold emotional significance to the star, who reflected on how his own experiences inspired his music in an Instagram post on Friday, Oct. 16.
"Lonely is out now with @itsbennyblanco. When he and @finneas showed me this song to be honest it was hard to listen to considering how tough it was to get through some of these chapters," he wrote on the social media platform. "I went into the studio and sang through it which wasn’t easy but started to really see the importance of telling this story!"
Meanwhile, he previously admitted that the "pain" and "heartache" of the pandemic inspired his music video for "Holy."
"[Director Colin Tilley] and I, both of our hearts behind wanting to make this video, both from the fact that we know that there’s a lot going on in the world right now. A lot of pain, a lot of heartache, a lot of frustration, a lot of people losing jobs," he said.
"It basically shows how an act of compassion can really change the trajectory of someone’s life or day," he continued. "And just having empathy for people. That’s our goal with this project, is just to inspire, to bring hope in this kind of uncertain, fragile time."
It’s safe to say Bieber did just that with his moving SNL performance, which is a preview of the "new era" that Beliebers can expect from the star in the coming years.
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