Drake and Justin Bieber have been supporting each other and collaborating together long before Bieber’s remix of the rapper’s “Hotline Bling.” In 2011, the Torontonians tied for International Video of the Year By a Canadian at the MuchMusic Video Awards.
Bieber’s then-girlfriend Selena Gomez hosted the ceremony that year and presented the trophy alongside Colin Farrell. The singer won for “Somebody to Love (Remix)” featuring his mentor Usher while Drake won for “Find Your Love.” Upon arriving on the stage together, the rapper made room for Bieber to be closer to Gomez. “Selena, nice to meet you. I’m Justin,” a flirtatious, teenage Bieber says to his now former girlfriend on the stage. “You’re very beautiful. Maybe we can go out sometime.”
During his speech, Drake made sure to note how both he and the singer “both do it for Toronto.” Bieber shared a similar sentiment when previewing his “Hotline Bling” remix on Instagram. “Canadian boys really doing it,” he wrote.
Later in the year, Bieber released a clean remix of Drake’s “Trust Issues,” though the rapper took a few issues with Bieber cleaning up the language. “I wish he would’ve left all the cuss words in it,” he told MTV News. “I feel like that would’ve been so G, if he would’ve done all the swearing. I was excited when I heard he remixed it because there was like a gang of swearing in that song. I was like ‘Oh, we’re about to hear the transformation of Bieber.'” Drake was more pleased with Bieber’s remix skills just four years later.