will.i.am always backed Justin Bieber
will.i.am has "always believed in" Justin Bieber.
The Black Eyed Peas star is a huge fan of the 'Sorry' singer and thinks he is a very influential performer.
He said: "I've always believed in that kid, I think he's extremely talented and I'm happy for him.
"It's one thing to have success, and it's another to be paving the way and defining contemporary pop music.
"He went underground and took underground to the surface, so hats off."
But will admits other people weren't always convinced by his faith in the 21-year-old singer, both at the beginning of his career and again a few years ago when Justin's wild partying and bad behaviour were generating more headlines than his music.
will told heat magazine: "When I used to say, like, six years ago, 'That guy's gonna have a career', everyone would be like, 'What are you talking about?'
"And then three years ago, when he was being crucified just because he was doing what every teenager does, I said, 'Nah he's going to have a career.'
"Everybody said, 'What are you on about? He's so rude!' But I'm like, 'No, he's grown up with cameras, if you guys grew up with cameras I don't think you'd even be able to go outside."