Maybe pop prince Justin Bieber’s film title and personal catchphrase, “Never Say Never,” needs further examination. The 16-year-old lost to Esperanza Spalding for Best New Artist at Sunday’s Grammy Awards ceremony.
Though Bieber shook winner Esperanza’s hand in congratulations, MTV News reports he was “disappointed” that he lost to the 26-year-old female jazz bassist and singer, who had a fraction of his sales but became the first jazz artist to win the category.
“I had no clue what was going to happen. I worked really hard these past few years and you know, I’m not going to lie — I was disappointed,” Bieber said minutes after losing to Spalding. “But, you know, I’m gonna come back [next year] and we’ll take a few home.”
The loss has encouraged Bieber to put forth more effort into his music.
“I’m inspired to work harder than I did last year,” he said. “It’s going to be hard, but I’m going to try.”
Spalding, whose third album was released last summer, hasn’t grabbed news headlines like Bieber, whose film “Never Say Never” debuted second at the box office during its opening weekend, surprising many film critics who assumed all the “Beliebers” would flock to theaters and put the movie at the top spot.
Borog Sportsbook manager Richard Gardner told MTV prior to the ceremony that Bieber had a pretty good chance of receiving the Best New Artist award, but that he wasn’t guaranteed the win.
“Justin Bieber is a strong favorite to pick up this award, and if the voting was done by teenage girls his odds would be 1/1000, but the Grammys are seen as a more serious organization so there could be an opportunity for an upset here with either of the British nominations,” Gardner said.
“I am new in that I haven’t been around that long, and I’m an artist,” Spalding told Spinner in January following her Grammy nomination. “So it fits. Somebody out there thinks that in their mind that I am one of the best. It’s flattering. I’ll take it.”
Before receiving her first Grammy, Spalding told the Associated Press that she’d continue to take public transit regardless of her nomination.
“I’m going to buy a dress that I wouldn’t have normally bought to go to the awards ceremony,” Spalding said. “[But] I still take the subway … things are pretty much as they were before.”