Justin Bieber can still remember what it felt like to be teased for being poor.

The musician no longer has to worry about money; currently he holds the top three positions in the UK singles chart alone with hits Love Yourself, Sorry and What Do You Mean? While it might seem as though good fortune has come easily, the 21-year-old faced a long climb to the top.

"I remember being poor and being teased by other kids," he admitted to Britain's OK! magazine. "I remember sitting in restaurants with my mother and she'd make me order water instead of soda. I remember so badly wanting to order a soda. And I also remember that when I got my first big pay cheque I was so glad to be able to use that money to take care of my mother."

Justin's latest music is part of his new persona, which has seen him ditch the bad-boy image and focus on his career. The star wants everyone to know how tough it was growing up in the glare of the media.

"I'd like people to understand that when you have so much on and you're constantly under scrutiny, it's a very tough place to be," he explained. "It was a hard time for me and I needed to rebel against everything. That's when I started making a lot of mistakes. When you're 19 or 20, you're going to make a lot of mistakes - it's just that I have cameras following me everywhere."

Justin's bad behaviour includes egging a neighbour's home, causing $20,000 of damage, and an arrest for driving without a licence. However, he adds that many reports were "blown out of proportion" and that he became something of a "reality star" rather than a musician.