Saturday, June 10, 2017

Latest NKOTB News

NKOTB was interviewed on Billboard's Pop Shop Podcast. Click here to listen!

Donnie will be narrating a documentary about the Celtics and Lakers on ESPN. It is called 30 for 30 and ESPN will air Parts I and II on Tuesday June 13 at 8 PM ET and Part III will air on Wednesday June 14th at 8 PM ET.

Donnie is raffling away passes to NKOTB Cruise and front row tickets to his "Another Evening with Donnie Wahlberg" show on June 19! Update: Contest has ended.

Here is an article about recent a show...

Orange County Register: 5 ways New Kids on the Block’s Total Package Tour was totally legit

Donnie answers some quick fire questions on Daily Mail UK

Guilty pleasure? Watching The Real Housewives with my wife [actress Jenny McCarthy]. We’ve just got into Ladies of London.
Who would play you in a movie of your life? My brother Mark [Wahlberg].

Where is home? Spread between Boston, New York and just outside Chicago, where we spend most of our time.

Career plan B? Police officer.

Biggest bugbear? The dishonesty of politicians in the US right now.

As a child you wanted to be… A professional baseball player.

Earliest memory? Playing with a car on the kitchen floor in Boston while drinking Kool-Aid.

Your best quality? My positive attitude – I try to stay grateful.

And your worst? When I’m not being positive or grateful, I get crabby.

Last meal on earth? Fried chicken and fish and chips – with homemade chips – followed by chocolate-chip cookies and ice cream.

Dream dinner-party guests? James Corden, BeyoncĂ© and the major politicians in the US. I’d ask James to make them laugh, BeyoncĂ© to serenade them – and I’d try to talk some sense into them.

Advice to teenage self? Don’t worry. Everything’s going to be just fine.

Secret skill? Removing snow. As a child, I used to make money shovelling snow for my neighbours. Now I’m an adult, I wait for the snow with anticipation.

Starstruck moment? When I met my wife on a TV show in 2012. I felt very shy around her, but I think that worked to my advantage.

Career highlight? Re-forming New Kids on the Block in 2008.

Big break? Meeting the producer Maurice Starr [who created New Kids on the Block] and Mickey Rourke, who cast me in the 1996 film Bullet. I’d wanted to act for years.

Favourite tipple? A pickleback – a shot of Jameson whiskey followed by pickle juice.

Hangover cure? My wife has a secret hangover prevention remedy: if you drink the remedy while you’re drinking, you won’t get a hangover.

What did you have for breakfast today? A shake with chocolate protein powder, almond milk, peanut butter and half a banana.

Top of your bucket list? I’ve yet to jump out of an aeroplane.

Biggest inspiration? My mum and my children.

What makes your life better? Gratitude and a heated toilet seat.

Your idea of a perfect day? Waking up with my wife, then maybe going to the diner for breakfast – and not leaving her side the entire time.

Worst job you’ve ever done? I worked with my dad for two summers driving his truck. He was a bit grouchy.

Last film that made you cry? Moonlight.

Where would you time travel to? The 1950s. It seems like the last great time of innocence and great music.

First record you bought? Lost In Space by Jonzun Crew.

Favourite book? I have two: the autobiography of Malcolm X and The Art of Happiness by the Dalai Lama.

Biggest extravagance? I have a lot of expensive tennis shoes.

Biggest regret? I don’t have any – anything I regret I try to fix right away.

Style icon? US rapper Future.

Celebrity crush? I married her.  

New Kids on the Block’s latest single 'One More Night’ and EP Thankful are out now on Kobalt Music Recordings


Danny was interviewed by Lincoln Journal Star

The Scream.

Frank Sinatra heard it first in the 1940s. A decade or so later, the shrill high sound from hundreds of girls pierced the ears of Elvis Presley. In the 60s, the Beatles got it full blast -- from the Ed Sullivan show to Shea Stadium.

Decade after decade, it renews itself, most recently greeting One Direction at each of its shows.

In 1989 and 1990, however, the scream was directed at New Kids on the Block. Nearly 30 years, later, it still is.

“We definitely still get a full-on scream,” said NKOTB’s Danny Wood. “But it’s from girls that are grown, are professionals, have had babies, are paying their own bills. The pitch of the scream is at a bit of a lower register than it was when they were teenagers.”

That older version of the scream will be at full volume Sunday when NKOTB hit the stage at Omaha’s CenturyLink Center -- just as it has been since the boy band from Boston reunited. 

“When we got back together in 2008, I had no expectations,” Wood said. “I remember the opener, in Toronto, I couldn’t believe the sound and the size of the crowd. They were all still there. And they’re bringing their daughters, their nieces and there’s also a younger crowd. It’s amazing to get a second chance at doing this and doing it right.”

So what does "doing it right" entail?

“We got into the business and didn’t know anything about the business,” Wood said. “There was stuff that got out of control that we didn’t know about. The merch got out of control and we had to rein that in. That’s just one example. There was all kinds of stuff like that. Now, it’s a completely different thing.”

Well, not entirely different. The New Kids still do all their old hits and they still dance up a storm.

“It’s like when Michael Jordan had his second go-round with three championships when he had Pippen and Rodman,” Wood said. “We still dance the whole show. I still breakdance in the show. I’m 48 years old and I still breakdance. I stay in really good shape. But I don’t think there are many guys who could breakdance at 48.”

One major difference -- and something that sets NKOTB apart from most of its contemporaries and nearly every other reunited outfit -- The New Kids have a new record, an EP called “Thankful,” released to coincide with the summer tour.

Having new music is key to keeping the group -- and the shows -- alive, Wood said.

“The first thing is we listen to the pulse of the fans,” Wood said. “Our last record was in 2013. We like to do it because we can integrate it into the show. It adds a little energy and excitement. But we don’t over do it. We still do all the hits, all the old songs. We just integrate the new ones and try to make it exciting.”

The old hits -- “You Got It (The Right Stuff),” “I’ll Be Loving You (Forever),” “Hangin’ Tough,” “Cover Girl” and “Step By Step” -- mean more to Wood now than when they were on the charts and turning NKOTB into pop stars

“I think after all these years I have a greater appreciation for all those songs,” he said. “Some of those songs, when we were recording them, I didn't care for as an inner city kid growing up in Boston breakdancing in the street. Now I appreciate them as songs and for everything they’ve done for us.”

"Us" is the key word there. The New Kids on the Block are, Wood said, truly a group of lifelong friends who came together through music, not through the manipulation of a music industry svengali.

Wood, Donnie Wahlberg, Jordan Knight and Jonathan Knight were teenage friends when Wahlberg’s rapping and stage presence impressed manager Maurice Starr, who was looking to put together a white version of New Edition, the popular '80s R&B group.

Wahlberg recruited his friends and his brother Mark into the group. Mark lasted only a year, leaving in 1985 to front his own band, Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch, and, later, became a successful actor.

Mark Wahlberg was replaced by Joey McIntyre, who was younger than the others and the only kid not from the neighborhood.

“We’re a little different than a lot of the groups that were put together,” Wood said. “Four of us went to elementary school together and me and Donnie went all the way through high school together. He’s the godfather to my children. They’re like my brothers. We’ve spent so much time together, we’re more than brothers.”

After a sputtering 1986 debut album, NKOTB hit with 1989’s “Hangin’ Tough,” which topped the charts, and with MTV videos for the album's hit songs. It propelled the band into scream-filled arenas.

By 1994, however, NKOTB was no longer at the top of the pops, pushed off by grunge and gangsta rap, and the group disbanded.

It reformed 14 years later and has been going strong since -- and, importantly, Wood said, its been a joy for the group and its fans.

“That’s a big part of it,” he said. “Now it’s nine years back together. We wouldn’t do it if we didn’t have fun together.”

That said, Wood quickly acknowledged he never gave the slightest thought to how long NKOTB would be around back when they first heard the scream, nor does he reflect much on the group’s accomplishments.

“You don’t think, in your early 20s, you’re going to be doing it when you’re 48 years old,” he said. “There’s no way. We’re really blessed right now that we can do this. ... What we did, following in the footsteps of the Jackson 5 and New Edition, we kind of took it to the next level, in ticket sales and touring. I guess that’s something to look back on. But the main thing I try to do is enjoy the moment. We’re just five lucky guys.”

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