A local San Antonio website "210SA" has a Q & A with Donnie and a boy band podcast here. Thanks to Kristie for the update.
Here is the interview with Donnie:
Call it what you want, the New Kids on the Block are back. Donnie Wahlberg, Danny Wood, Joey McIntyre and Jordan and Jonathan Knight take the stage Friday, Oct. 17, at the AT&T Center. 210SA chatted with Wahlberg, who said the group is older, wiser and better than ever.
The first question is, I’m sure, the most redundant: What inspired the reunion?
That is the most redundant question.
Sorry, I have to ask.
The stock answer is that I heard a song, and it inspired me. The true answer — I mean, I had notions (of getting back together) before, other guys too, but to actually take the step to try and see it through is the mystery part. Time and circumstance dictated that. This particular time, I was going through a lot of changes in life. The possibility of being more creative in something other than acting was calling me. And Jordan and Joe said, all right, let’s see. Once the energy was right with us three, then I put on the blinders and didn’t listen to what anyone said. I felt good about it. I think we never really resolved the group the right way.
Did everyone just sort of fall back into the same patterns?
No, it was different. It wasn’t the same old thing; I think it was better. Everyone’s approach has changed so much for the better with maturity. It’s like riding a bike in some ways. It’s very reminiscent. But it’s better than before. There are moments in the studio when Joe’s really looked at a singing part like an actor playing a part, trying to connect. He’s really trying to make it his own. The whole mentality is totally different.
You’re all older now. Has that made a difference, physically?
No. We just have to be smarter, that’s all. I can’t run around and do the crazy things I used to do when I was 20. We’re better onstage, and smarter offstage. We can’t be crazy. We’re responsible for 100 people’s jobs. There are too many people to let down. This is too special to mess up. We have to take care of ourselves.
What’s the biggest difference in the business now, versus 15 years ago?
The business is totally changed in many ways. We took a similar approach to what we did before, other than the use of the Internet — we take advantage of Internet stuff. But it’s mostly the same approach. We’re financing ourselves, going out and finding songs and writing songs and shopping around to labels. We didn’t go about it in any new way. We could have done it a lot of different ways, but I believe in partnerships. It’s more important to have a label with the best people behind us to help us make and sell a good album. We needed people who cared about making a great record the same way we did.
How’s the crowd? Have the screaming teens become screaming 30-somethings?
The crowds are unbelievable. I don’t know if I can try to describe it. I had a friend of mine, a movie producer, come to a show, and he couldn’t believe the amount of joy from the fans in that building. He was really blown away by it. I have moments in the show where I stop and look out there and am overcome every time. To be able to bring joy to so many people, especially when there’s not a lot of joy around right now, is such a gift. I look out there at those people being so happy watching me and my friends — I feel blessed, honored, privileged to be the source of that joy.
Are we going to see a revival of New Kids sleeping bags and pillowcases, or has the merchandise been dialed down a bit?
We’re keeping it simple. We could probably get away with doing some gimmicks, because the fans are coming up with some pretty crazy stuff. It’s the fans’ deal. They make incredible posters, T-shirts — it’s their way to participate. We see the signs. They’re touching. Funny. We notice them all. We’ll talk about them after the show. That’s more fun than seeing someone with a New Kids bedsheet.
Have you had a moment when you’ve thought, what the hell did we get ourselves into?
I can’t let that moment happen. There are moments when the thought’s crept up on me — but I stop it, take a breath, and let it pass. I can’t walk around with that. If there was one moment where I was worried about karma, it was at the very first “Today Show” performance. It was pouring, and we’re about to go on live TV on a stage that’s soaking wet. The first performance in 15 years, and I kept thinking, if someone falls what is that gonna mean? “They don’t have it. They’re old men, they don’t have it.” That was not the kind of karma I was looking for. But it worked out great. What are you gonna do? You just gotta go with it. That maturity prevented those moments.
Last question, on behalf of all the girls I grew up with — will you marry me?
Oh come on, you guys probably still get that all the time. What do you say to that?
I don’t know. I was having a conversation with a buddy not long ago, and he asked if I would marry or date a fan. I said of course. He said, really? You’d go out with some girl who stood outside for hours in the rain to meet you? And I was like, wouldn’t you want a woman who’d wait outside in the rain to meet you? That’s kind of hot. I’ve been kissing a lot of fans. I’m probably on 10,000 now. I hug everyone. The fans are the sixth New Kid. There’s no us without them.