‘Bieber Fever’ overtakes New Orleans Arena

Langdon Herrick

Special to theadvocate.com

FILE - In this Nov. 18, 2012 file photo, Justin Bieber arrives at the 40th Anniversary American Music Awards in Los Angeles. Police say a paparazzo was hit by a car and killed after taking photos of Justin Bieber's white Ferrari on a Los Angeles street Tuesday evening Jan. 1, 2013. Los Angeles police Officer James Stoughton says the photographer, who was not identified, died at a hospital shortly after the crash Tuesday evening. Stoughton says Bieber was not in the Ferrari at the time. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)
FILE - In this Nov. 18, 2012 file photo, Justin Bieber arrives at the 40th Anniversary American Music Awards in Los Angeles. Police say a paparazzo was hit by a car and killed after taking photos of Justin Bieber's white Ferrari on a Los Angeles street Tuesday evening Jan. 1, 2013. Los Angeles police Officer James Stoughton says the photographer, who was not identified, died at a hospital shortly after the crash Tuesday evening. Stoughton says Bieber was not in the Ferrari at the time. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)

Before the madness of Super Bowl XLVII descends upon New Orleans, a completely different (but possibly even more powerful) fandom will sweep through the city. Teen-pop megastar Justin Bieber’s “Believe” tour will make the New Orleans Arena its third stop of 2013, and a new album’s worth of songs and opening act Carly Rae Jepsen are sure to drive those suffering from “Bieber Fever” into critical condition.

With a pair of pop stars whose rise could only be described as meteoric, the pairing seems like a natural fit. Fans looking to grab a seat at the event may want to act fast. Of the 88 shows in Bieber’s “My World” tour, 67 were sold out. Over a million tickets were sold for that tour, with a gross of more than $80 million, and the teen singer also managed to sell out a show at Madison Square Garden in 22 minutes. So far, ticket sales for the “Believe” tour have been impressive as well, with each show grossing over a million dollars on average.

2012 was a big year for Bieber and his many fans, as it saw the release of his new album, “Believe.” The album featured a more R&B-inspired sound than his previous ones, as well as collaborations with Nicki Minaj, Drake, Ludacris and Big Sean. It also stormed the Billboard Hot 100, debuting at No. 2. 2013 looks to be a busy year as well, with the January release of a new acoustic album and a double-shift gig on Saturday Night Live as both host and musical guest.

Last year was even more momentous for fellow Canadian singer (and Canadian Idol contestant) Carly Rae Jepsen, whose catchy single “Call Me Maybe” rocketed to the top of the charts and sold over 10 million copies. The song also earned her two Grammy nominations, one for Best Song and the other for Best Pop Solo Performance. Not only is Jepsen the opening act for the North American leg of the “Believe” tour, she sings a duet with Bieber during the show as well.

While critics and fans alike noted the change in musical and vocal style from Bieber’s first album, “My World,” and his most recent, “Believe,” fans can look forward to an even greater departure from the original formula: acoustic arrangements. “Believe Acoustic” features stripped-down versions of his latest songs, with a few new ones as well, and the likelihood that fans will hear some of these new arrangements at the New Orleans show is high, considering that the “Believe Acoustic” album releases at the end of January.

The “Believe” tour began in September 2012 and has already grossed more than $40 million. The tour includes over 80 shows in North America, Europe, South Africa and Asia, and will pass through New Orleans at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15. Tickets for the show can be ordered at the New Orleans Arena box office at (504) 587-3822. More information about the concert, such as how the Super Bowl activity will affect the show, can be found on their website at www.neworleansarena.com.