Two for the price of one is a commonplace consumer proposition. In the 21st Century, the concept of the hit duet has been developed to an improbable degree, with artists often turning up on other people’s tracks more regularly than putting out their own. It makes sound business sense – hitting two fanbases at once – but it’s also responsible for both lively creative innovation and some of the greatest songs of our time. In the early stages of his career, Justin Bieber was mentored by R&B icon Usher – and they later worked together – but there’s a far broader set of collaborators who have recorded with him since. Here are the ten best Justin Bieber duets to date.
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12: “Despacito (Remix)” (Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee, featuring Justin Bieber)
Less a classic collaboration, more of an almighty leg-up. The original cut by Puerto Rican vocalist Luis Fonsi and rapper Daddy Yankee had done reasonable business for a few months, before a remix featuring Justin’s vocals helped push it into the stratosphere. remix of the reggaeton/Latin classic became one of the biggest songs of 2017, with sales in the millions and streams in the billions. It’s even been credited with giving Puerto Rico, where the video was filmed, a major tourism boost.
11: “2U” (David Guetta, featuring Justin Bieber)
Widely known as the Grandfather Of EDM, pioneering DJ David Guetta has worked with many artists over the past two decades. Justin’s contribution to this powerful pop/club banger didn’t extend to filming a video – the pair relied on a group of lip-synching models for that – but “2U” was a substantial hit in 2017.
10: “Friends” (with BloodPop)
After years spent writing for acts such as Lady Gaga and Madonna, BloodPop (aka Michael Turner) took a step into the spotlight with this dance hit, which was released in 2017. Justin co-wrote the track, marking his return to music after a year’s break. It was a big hit, particularly in the UK – where it peaked at No.2 – and was later reissued in a remixed form with additional vocals from Julia Michaels.
9: “Beauty And A Beat” (featuring Nicki Minaj)
Culled from Justin’s third album, Believe, this 2012 single wasn’t one of his biggest hits, but it did reach the top of the US club charts. Nicki Minaj has appeared with almost everybody since her breakthrough, including notable guest turns with Katy Perry and Madonna, though she also took a strong lead in the creation of this cut. Zedd also had a hand in writing it, making “Beauty And A Beat” the only track on Believe that Justin didn’t get a writing credit on.
8: “#thatpower” (will.i.am, featuring Justin Bieber)
A trip to the Brit Awards in London led to the recording of “#thatpower,” which was issued from will.i.am’s fourth studio album, #willpower. The pair performed the song at the 2013 Billboard Music Awards and it was used as “impact” music on several major TV shows. The track was a sizeable dance hit and crossed over onto the world’s mainstream charts, including a No.2 peak in the UK and a Top 20 placing in America.
7: “Stuck with U” (featuring Ariana Grande)
Even a pandemic couldn’t keep these two popstars apart. “Stuck with U” brought together pop royalty for a good cause, creating the ultimate quarantine love song and one of the best Justin Bieber duets. The sweet duet harmoniously blends two of the best voices in pop, while addressing the ups (and downs) of cohabitation.
6. “Intentions” (featuring Quavo)
The breakout hit from Bieber’s Changes album saw the crooner return to his “R&Bieber form.” Propelled by a bright, flickering beat, “Intentions” recruits Quavo of Migos for an infectious, yet heartfelt, single.
5: “Let Me Love You” (DJ Snake, featuring Justin Bieber)
The transatlantic partnership between France’s DJ Snake and Canadian singer Justin wasn’t the first single to be picked from the Frenchman’s debut album, Encore, but it was the biggest hit. A powerful Bonnie And Clyde-themed video certainly helped play its part, too.
4: “Cold Water” (Major Lazer, featuring Justin Bieber and MO)
If there’s one track on this list of the best Justin Bieber duets that defines the era of the multi-artist billing, “Cold Water” is it. Major Lazer is a collective built around EDM über-producer Diplo, and the team has worked with artists like Ellie Goulding and Bruno Mars. Danish singer MO joins Justin on this track, which hit the clubs in 2016 and became Major Lazer’s biggest crossover smash to date.
3: “As Long As You Love Me” (featuring Big Sean)
Rodney “Darkchild” Jenkins had a hand in “As Long As You Love Me,” the second single from 2012’s Believe. The song offers the first signs of Bieber experimenting beyond the obvious, and Big Sean’s contribution adds some ballast to the dub-heavy electronica. In the US, it became one of the 40 biggest songs of the year.
2: “Where Are Ü Now?” (with Jack Ü)
Who can imagine how different the original vocal and piano demo by Justin sounds compared to the cut we all know, which was remodeled by Diplo and Skrillex? The EDM titans helped turn “Where Are Ü Now?” into one of the decade’s biggest dance hits and the song marks the point when Justin truly broke beyond his core teenage fanbase for the first time. Released ahead of Purpose, it raised expectation for that 2015 album to a fever pitch.
1: “I Don’t Care” (with Ed Sheeran)
You can imagine the commercial appeal of pairing the world’s two biggest male pop stars on a new track but, perhaps, no one should be surprised that this midtempo pop song is also a creative triumph. Lifted from Ed Sheeran’s collaborations album, No.6 Collaborations Project, it was written by Ed and Justin, alongside the ever-dependable Max Martin and Shellback, with Poo Bear and Fred Gibson. It was the first new music from Ed in more than two years, and its jet-setting video, with sequences shot in Japan and the US, has already been seen many millions of times.
Looking for more? Discover the 20 best Justin Bieber songs of all time.