Ariana Grande backed him up.

By Christopher Luu
Apr 24, 2019 @ 9:00 pm

During Ariana Grande's second-weekend Coachella performance, she called up a superstar guest to join her. No, not a hologram, she summoned a real-life Justin Bieber out of his sabbatical to perform "Sorry" with her. By all accounts, the crowd loved every minute, but Morgan Stewart, the host of E!'s Nightly Pop, called foul, saying that Bieber was lip-synching. 

"I did not realize it was going to be that bad," she said, pointing out that his mouth didn't move when the song started. Elle reports that in a long series of tweets, Bieber called her out for the onslaught of negativity, saying that it was unnecessary to tear people down and bully when she could be spending her time spreading positivity. He explained that like many performers, he used a backing vocal: "I sang to to [sic] backtrack like most cameos do this is a normal thing."

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

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"@Morgan_Stewart just saw a video of you ripping me to shreds saying I was lip-syncing. They played the song and i just sang overtop of it.. regardless why spend your time tearing people down. It’s People like you that are bullies at school that are making kids suicidal. imagine if you spent even half the time you spend laughing at other peoples expense actually building people up and encouraging people how much positivity you could bring. What hurts about this is the fact that you have a platform to make a difference and rather than being positive you belittle people. Think about how awesome it felt for me to be on that stage after being away for so long the excitement and joy it gave me doing the thing i love the most, i sang to to backtrack like most cameos do this is a normal thing, and rather than try and make people feel accepted and loved you find things to pick apart like the world isn’t full of that already.. we can find something negative to say about anything or anyone. When are we gonna be the kind of people that find joy in adding value to one another and not tearing each other apart.."

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Grande responded as well, responding to a tweet that posted the video, writing, "People look so ugly when they talk about other people like this, it’s crazy. like no matter how pretty you are or how long u spent getting ready, u ugly to me now. HOW do people watch shit like this lmao."

In a now-deleted tweet that Bieber's wife, Hailey Baldwin, retweeted, Grande explained that the whole performance was a last-minute decision. "We also decided to do this ten minutes before my set started. we had 0 soundcheck, 0 rehearsal. u were singing with the back tracking like most cameos do. people are bored. people don’t know how it feels to be under such scrutiny. the world was happy to have u on stage again."

Stewart has not responded to either performer.

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