Hear Justin Bieber's Soul-Searching New Single, 'What Do You Mean?' - Rolling Stone
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Hear Justin Bieber’s Soul-Searching New Single, ‘What Do You Mean?’

Tropical-flavored cut is singer’s first sample from upcoming fourth studio album

Editor’s Note: The original version of this story erroneously reported that Bieber’s weeklong residency will be on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. The singer’s residency will be on The Today Show. The text has been corrected and Rolling Stone apologizes for the error.

Justin Bieber looks for romantic clarity on his breezy new single, “What Do You Mean?,” the first sample off his upcoming fourth LP, out November 13th via RBMG/Def Jam Recordings. The limber track finds Bieber crooning over looped vocal samples, gentle piano chords and tropical synths. “What do you mean / When you nod your head yes, but you wanna say no?” he sings. “What do you mean / When you don’t want me to move, but you tell me to go?” The single is available to purchase at iTunes.

Contrary to earlier rumors, a spokesperson for Bieber confirmed to Rolling Stone that “What Do You Mean?” was not produced by Skrillex. The track was co-produced by Bieber and the singer’s “Boyfriend” collaborator MdL.

Bieber’s lyric video follows skateboarders Ryan Sheckler and Chelsea Castro as they pull off slow-motion tricks, later meeting up with a shirtless Bieber as he displays his own skating ability. The singer will perform the song this Sunday at the MTV Video Music Awards; next Wednesday, September 2nd, he will appear on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon before kicking off a week-long residency on The Today Show beginning Monday, September 7th and concluding with live Today Show performances on Thursday, September 10th and Friday, the 11th.

Earlier this month, Bieber teased “What Do You Mean?” by sending lyric snippets and a clock to 49 Twitter followers via direct message. The singer also tweeted videos of celebrities – like Skrillex and Alec Baldwin –  sharing their anticipation. 

In his recent Interview Magazine cover story, Bieber told Martha Stewart about the “very personal” vibe of his upcoming LP. “People will be able to really get into where my heart is,” he said. “It’s about my journey in life – stuff that I’ve been through. Maybe I can teach a lesson, certain things that are inspiring.”

The 21-year-old reaffirmed Rick Rubin and Kanye West’s involvement in the album, also revealing some additional collaborators. “I’m working a lot with Skrillex and Diplo and this guy named Poo Bear, who’s an incredible writer,” he said. “We’ve just been getting our groove. You kind of go through a period where you’re in there and nothing comes and nothing comes, and then, finally, it’s like bang-bang-bang – you get them all in a row. I’m at a place where I’m really happy and I’m ready to share my music.”

In This Article: Justin Bieber, Skrillex


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