Smokey Robinson wants to collaborate with Justin Bieber – just not necessarily in the recording studio.
As the 20-year-old pop star awaits trial following a January DUI arrest, the legendary Robinson says he’d like to share some of the wisdom he’s learned along the way.
“I know Justin pretty good,” Robinson, 74, tells PEOPLE at the 56th Annual Thalians Gala in Los Angeles. “But I would love to sit him in a room somewhere and talk with him for an hour just one on one.”
Robinson, who was honored at the event alongside wounded veterans, pointed out the current influences in Bieber’s life.
“I would tell him that the guys that you’re doing this stuff for, and in front of, and with, they have nothing to lose,” Robinson says.
And while those companions seem to have nothing at stake, Robinson worries about the fans who do – the same ones who may turn to Bieber to set an example.
“He’s not only living for himself anymore. He’s too popular,” Robinson says. “So his image, and what he does, has influence on a lot of young people, so he needs to think about that.”
Robinson’s solution? “He just divorces himself from that,” he says. “That’s what he does. He just divorces himself from that element and gets himself together.”
Meanwhile, Bieber – who was recently detained by U.S. Customs officials at the Los Angeles International Airport – is currently awaiting trial now scheduled for May 5 since pleading guilty to all charges (driving under the influence, resisting arrest and driving without a valid driver’s license). He’s also facing assault charges, and his egg-throwing case could be treated as a felony if damage is determined to be more than $400.
Justin Bieber’s Changing Looks