When Usher met Justin Bieber He Saw the ‘Eye of the Tiger’ in His Protégé

(Part 11) Star Power Upload: (Old-School Flava)
Why Mentors, Role Models and a Few Sidekicks Make You Shine!

It doesn’t happen often but it did for Justin Bieber. The young breakout star got his start on YouTube. After posting a few song clips, he caught the eye of Usher. When Bieber met Usher in Atlanta, it was the start of big things. Usher remembers seeing the ‘eye of the tiger’ in Bieber who has become his protégé.

This is the classic example of an apprentice relationship. It’s where you start out as a rookie or new recruit. Usher decided to mentor Bieber as a big-brother and protector. Bieber’s singing talent was plenty. But since he was new to the music business he had to learn to ‘think like a winner and act like a star.’

With no formal music training beyond a few drum lessons, Bieber became self-taught on the guitar. He’s had to work hard and remain focused on growing his singing appeal. While most teenagers get to hangout, Bieber makes the sacrifice in his social life. It’s how he prepares for platinum records.

If you were to ask Usher whether Bieber will have longevity, he might say it depends on his motivation. He’s got to want it more for himself than someone else wants it for him. His star power will outshine others if he’s bent on being an original and not a copy. Originals last for a while. Copies last for a minute.  

Bieber has achieved much success at a young age. His humble beginnings point to a great future. His attitude early on was that of ‘school me.’ He was ready and willing to soak up the knowledge of the business like a sponge. He’s shown how the right mentor can help move you closer to the big time.


(Part 11) Star Power Upload: (New-School Flava)
Why Mentors, Role Models and a Few Sidekicks Make You Shine!

It happened for Justin Bieber. Teenage girls caught the fever. Young, gifted and hot. Using Youtube to land a spot. Posting a few song clips. Finding a Manager who shared some tips. First meeting Usher in ATL. Becoming his protégé the world knows well. With the ‘eye of the tiger,’ he’s got the goods to sell.

The classic relationship as an apprentice. Ready as ever to pump his fist. Starting out as a rookie or new recruit. Becoming a household name to boot. With Usher as his big-brother and mentor. A reason for being his protector. Bieber’s singing talent is plenty. Thinking like a winner acting like a star before twenty.

No formal music lessons to show. Bieber put his game in the flow. Becoming self-taught on drums and guitar. Hoping one day to drive a sports car. Staying focused on his music appeal. Knowing his road to platinum would take zeal. Wooing the girls in looks, fragrance and feel.

Will Bieber have longevity in the biz?  Depends on his motivation as a whiz. Usher knows he’s got to want it more. Than worrying about a beef or settling some score. His star power will shine for long. If he’s an original like King Kong. Originals tend to last for a while. But copies end up on the junk pile.

Bieber has seen success at a young age. His humble beginnings point to the next stage. Seeking out as much ‘school me’ knowledge. Soaking up stuff like Sponge Bob in College. Sure, he’s ready willing and able. To have more success in his stable. As another mentoring success who’s capable.         

Tip: The classic mentoring relationship has taken many from ‘promising start to big-time finish’ using life-skills as a tool and adding in pop culture cool.

Talkback: How has social media helped change the game in getting good exposure or a needed break?

Essence Festival and Pebbles Presented ‘R&B Star’ to Groom New Talent

(Part 10) Star Power Upload: (Old-School Flava)
Why Mentors, Role Models and a Few Sidekicks Make You Shine!

 Where can you find singer/songwriter Pebbles these days? Well, she teamed-up with Essence on a national R&B Star search. It’s about looking for the ‘X-factor’ among a sea of singing talents. They’re mentoring emerging stars by getting them ready for Showtime. 

This kind of mentoring in Corporate America is often called a pipeline development relationship. The journey is one of discovery. You connect with your unique talents, voice and vision. You’re in touch with who you are and why you are. The more you know what makes you tick the more things begin to click.

In the music business, this calls for artist development. In the case of mentoring it’s about personal and career enjoyment. You have to put in the time to go from good to great. Pebbles sees herself helping artists reach their full potential. This takes going from creation to production.

Yea, being true to yourself and not something else is important. Plus, your reputation in-house or on the streets helps you catch the eyes of others. A good mentor or sponsor might be the missing link to getting you to the next level. But it’s reputation and name recognition that make you get noticed. 

That’s the whole idea behind R&B Star. That’s the truth of the matter with mentoring. When your name gets called you’re ready for primetime. You can deliver the goods to perform on Showtime. You’re right on point when the breakthrough meant for you comes in the nick of time.

(Part 10) Star Power Upload: (New-School Flava)
Why Mentors, Role Models and a Few Sidekicks Make You Shine!

What’s singer/songwriter Pebbles up to these days? Making a name for herself in new ways. She’s been looking for a national R&B Star. With the help of Essence the winner should go far. The one with the “X-factor’ in signing talent. Who’d be rockin’ the mic with Showtime content.

Corporate America calls it ‘mentoring to fill the pipeline.’ The kind of relationship that needs discovery time. Connecting with your unique talents, voice and vision. Being in tough with your inner mission. Knowing who you are and what makes you tick. And the reason why you are as things begin to click.

With music it’s about artist development. With mentoring it’s in personal and dream enjoyment. As you put in the time going from good to great. Your skills you better appreciate. Pebbles taking artists’ potential to the top. From creation to the production shop. A process where the beat just don’t stop.

Yea, being true to yourself is key. If you wanna earn a fat fee. Your reputation In-house or on the streets. Helps you achieve some major feats. Catching the eyes of a good mentor or sponsor. Could be the ticket or success anchor. Your name in lights might pop-up. As you get noticed and begin to blow-up.

That’s how the new R&B Star gets a deal. And how mentors, role models and sidekicks work for real. You feel you’re ready for primetime. You’ve got the goods to perform on Showtime. You’re on point knowing success takes a climb. As your breakthrough shows-up in the nick of time.      

Tip: Mentors, role models and sidekicks might tell you to cheer-up, but reputation plus a good sponsor make you blow-up.

Talkback: Who are some has-been artists you’d like to see make a comeback or emerging artists you’d like to see blow-up?

Ray Lewis Says He’s Got La’Shaun Armstrong’s Back for Life

(Part 9) Star Power Upload: (Old-School Flava)
Why Mentors, Role Models and a Few Sidekicks Make You Shine!

NFL Linebacker Ray Lewis plays with the heart of a lion. This off-season he showed he’s got a heart of gold. Lewis connected with La’Shaun Armstrong during his family loss. Armstrong’s mother drowned herself and three kids in the Hudson River. Lewis says he’s got Armstrong’s back with mentoring for life.

When the news first broke Lewis felt he had to do something. His actions were like that seen in a life-saver relationship. He reached out to Armstrong as soon as he heard about the tragedy. Lewis plans to be there for Armstrong with the friendship that comes from having a ‘big brother.’

This story so moved Lewis and others that they quickly planned a black-tie fundraiser. The honored guests were Armstrong and his Grandmother. Lewis pledged dollars from his foundation for La’Shaun’s education. Oftentimes, mentoring is about practicing the stewardship of your time, talent and money.

Armstrong’s not sure if he wants to play pro football when he grows up. He’s being encouraged to take things one day at a time. During tough times one can either shrink like a violet or bloom like a rose. The choice you make to upload your star status will depend on the leadership steps you take. 

Lewis can do for Armstrong what Tony Dungy has done for Michael Vick. When setbacks or panic attacks hit, there may be some downtime in between time. Mentors, role models and sidekicks are reminders that it’s not over unless you quit and rollover. The right attitude of gratitude will cause a shift in your altitude.


(Part 9) Star Power Upload: (New-School Flava)
Why Mentors, Role Models and a Few Sidekicks Make You Shine!

Ray Lewis plays Linebacker like a lion. That’s his way on the gridiron. This off-season showing his heart of gold. Connecting with La’Shaun Armstrong when life went cold. His mother drowned herself and family in the Hudson River. Lewis promised him mentoring to last from now and forever.

He felt he had to do something. To keep Armstrong from crying. Taking action like that of a life-saver. Reaching out to him to provide some cover. He plans to be there as a ‘big brother’ head on. Sticking close to Armstrong even though Mom’s dead and gone.

Some were moved to organize. A black-tie fundraiser and grand prize. With honored guests Armstrong and his Grandmother. Ray serving as ‘father figure.’ Pledging dollars from his foundation. For Armstrong’s long-term education. Giving time, talent and money in stewardship. Mentoring him towards a scholarship.

Armstrong’s not sure about a football career. He’s glad to just have Lewis’ ear. Taking things one day at a time. Making sure he doesn’t succumb to crime. Shrink like a violet or bloom like a rose? During tough times it’s a matter of staying on your toes. To upload your star status means leadership’s not closed.

Lewis can do from Armstrong. What Tony Dungy did for Vick who’s back strong. When setbacks or panic attacks hit. Mentors can help you stay fit. By having the right attitude of gratitude. That’ll cause a shift in your altitude. Reminding you that it’s not over until it’s over. Or unless you quit and rollover.     

Tip: Mentors can help us make the shift in attitude when setbacks or panic attacks threaten our altitude.

Talkback: How have Michael Vick or Ray Lewis been an influence or made an impact in everyday life?