Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Jordan Knight interview with MSNBC

Jordan did an interview with MSNBC!

As you read this, there’s a good chance that Jordan Knight, Jonathan Knight, Joey McIntyre, Donnie Wahlberg and Danny Wood — aka the New Kids on the Block — are holed up a rehearsal studio somewhere, polishing up the dance moves for their long-awaited reunion tour, which hits arenas this fall, and hit the TODAY show on Friday. 

If the image of five men in their late 30s facing a mirror and synchronizing the swoon-inducing steps that made them boy-band superstars in the late ’80s strikes you both comical and irresistible, imagine how they must feel. 

“It was surreal at first,” admits Jordan Knight, the group’s de facto frontman, who in the years since the band’s break-up in 1994 has released three solo CDs, gotten married, fathered two children, and did time in VH-1’s “Surreal Life” house. “We had we talked about it a lot and I envisioned it, but when we first got in front of those mirrors and we all hit the move at the same time, it was like ‘Whoa!’” Knight lets out a self-deprecating chuckle, then proclaims, “The magic’s back, folks.” Are you reviving some of the old choreography or is it all brand new?

Jordan Knight: You’ll see some old stuff and you’ll see twists on old stuff and then you’ll see brand-new stuff.  It’s like riding a bike. We’ve gotten past that initial shock phase of using all our different muscles and now it feels good. It feels effortless. You guys must have been approached to do a reunion tour for years. Why now?

Knight: I can only speak for myself, but I think as far as trends in music and the mood of the country, the timing was right. People want an uplifting, fun, almost reminiscent feeling back.  Plus, more and more people started asking me about it and it kind of got me in the headspace of, ‘Man, that’s a good idea.’ I would go into radio stations with a new solo project and (the disc jockeys) would be like, “(Dismissively) Yeah, that’s great. When are the New Kids getting back together?” What was your wife’s reaction when you told her about the reunion?

Knight: She was very excited for me. When I would bring songs home, she’d be like, “Wow, you guys are really doing it.” I’d be like, “Don’t worry, babe. I’ll be back in six months.” She’d go, “By the way this stuff is sounding, you’re going to be gone for more than six months.” Your catchy new single “Summertime” seems like the perfectly engineered comeback song, with the lyrics, “Do you remember… the times we shared together…”

Knight: Yeah, it kind of works all the way around. We thought maybe it was a little too boy band-ish but then we decided it’s who we are so why not? Your bandmate, Donnie Wahlberg, has carved out an acting career with movies like “The Sixth Sense” and the “Saw” sequels. Was it hard to convince him to put that on hold for the reunion tour?

Knight: Through the years, Donnie’s always talked to me about doing a reunion so we didn’t have to yank him out of his acting schedule. He just had to move some things around. Once we said “Go,” all schedules were cleared. This is a big deal. What’s your favorite Donnie Wahlberg movie?

Knight: “Band of Brothers,” the miniseries. I must have watched it 100 times. What was the silliest merchandising item you guys ever lent your image to?

Knight: To me, most of our merchandising was kind of silly. There were marbles, furry pink slippers and these funny dolls — not our Hasbro action figure, Ken-kind of dolls. Those were fine. There were these other fluffy dolls that had weird hairdos and looked nothing like us. Did you hang on to any of that stuff?

Knight: My mom has like a New Kids museum in her basement. It’s like the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, only New Kids and maybe a little Tiffany thrown in. What’s your position on autographing body parts? Will you do it?

Knight: I don’t mind as long as it’s in the right environment. I was on the TODAY show once and this girl was like, “Sign my breast!” She exposed herself on the TODAY show?

Knight: No, it was just the upper part, but it was live on camera and my wife was watching the whole thing. I was like shaking my head, “Nooooo.” Back in the day, your admirers could get a little crazy. Were you ever afraid for your safety?

Knight: There were times where it was dangerous, but I never got physically hurt. Once in Spain, we were at the airport ticket counter and we got bum-rushed by about 1,000 fans. We had to jump over the counter and we actually got on the conveyer belt where they put the luggage and we ended up in some big luggage bin. It was very Beatle-esque and one of the funniest things that ever happened. You’re obviously excited about the return of NKOTB but is there a part of you that’s worried about how you’re going to be received?

Knight: I’m older now and I don’t feel like we need to prove anything or blaze a new trail and be trendsetters. Just going on the road and entertaining the fans, that’s amazing. Getting on stage with the four other guys, that’s amazing. Being able to do this again, at this level, is amazing. Everything else is gravy. 

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