It’s an inevitable truth…even boy bands get older. New Kids on The Block‘s (NKOTB) Jordan Knight was only 14 when the group of five guys from Boston first heard the screams of crazed teen girls. Speaking with Scott McKenzie and the Morning MIX on a break from tour rehearsal, the NKOTB singer, who will turn 43 later this month, took time to reflect on the overall changes from the past to the present.
“Our fans grew up with us. When we first went out, it was like braces, pigtails, and everyone looked kind of young and geeky and now everyone’s grown up and sexy,” Knight said. “You know what’s cool is, we do meet and greets and a lot of fans will show before and after pictures, like ‘this is us in 1989 and this is us now.’ It’s really cool because in those moments I’m really grateful that we have a relationship with our fans…we grew up with them and they grew up with us.”
Ways for fans to interact with the guys have changed a lot over the years though, with social media being the main role for fan contact today.
“Back in the day, it seemed like our fans were just fans,” Knight said. “You had the wall of people with the flashes and screams and now you look in the crowd and you go ‘hey there’s what’s her name,’ and you know people by their Twitter handles. We even have conversations over Twitter with our fans. Social media is a great thing for a group like us, because we can just reach out to them and talk with them at any given moment.”
Knight also agreed that the concept of fame has seen a big change as well. “I think now there’s almost less shame,” he admitted. “I could go on the internet and record myself picking my nose and put it on YouTube and everyone would say, ‘oh that’s funny, that’s cute.’ Everyone sees each others blogs and it seems like it’s all out there,” he continued. “Like no one really cares. Back in the day, if someone got a picture of me picking my nose, it’d be in the National Enquirer!”
Hits of the past such as “You Got It (The Right Stuff)” and “I’ll Be Loving You (Forver)” may be hard to top, but that’s not the concern of the band now. Now it’s all about simply making good music that their fans will appreciate.
“We’re just enjoying ourselves, you know? We always want to put on a good show and put out good material, and now it’s like when we make records, we make them for the fans,” Knight said. “We don’t have to put out number 1 records and be like ‘we have to beat out this one or that one.’ There’s not that pressure.”
Time has taught them a thing or two as well. “We all enjoy ourselves more, and we get along well because we have wisdom in our age,” Knight said. “That just makes it easier on the whole group when you get along better. It’s a more enjoyable experience. We’re just having fun,” Knight continued. “That’s the main thing about our group is it rubs off. We genuinely have fun together and we’re just kids at heart. I think people see that it’s genuine, so I think that’s why we have longevity.”
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