Wednesday, September 14, 2022

Unreleased Jordan Knight album: "Around the World"

Did you know that Jordan actually recorded an album shortly after he released his first solo album? He started recording his second album in 2000. For some reason it took him a long time to record it and it's unclear why this album was never released. He started recording it under the record label Interscope, (which was the label his first album was under). However, he either was dropped or he decided to switch record labels.  I'm assuming because Interscope paid for him to record it and paid high end producers such as Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, they felt they owned the rights to the songs that were already made. Jordan recorded songs for the album in Minneapolis with Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, in England with producers Brian Rawlings and the Groove Brothers, in Atlantic City with Rodney Jerkins, and also in Los Angeles. 

Here's a brief history of the album...

Here is an article about it from MTV:



Former New Kid Jordan Knight's second album is a little Lawrence Welk, a little Boyz II Men and a whole lot of fun, uptempo pop.

"There's elements of everything from polka to doo-wop," producer Jimmy Jam said last week. "It's crazy — a very eclectic record."

The falsetto-voiced pop star is working on the disc in the Minneapolis studio of Jimmy Jam and partner Terry Lewis, who were also among the producers on Knight's 1999 self-titled solo debut. The pair are producing six of the album's tracks and will probably mix the entire LP.

"Around the World" will likely be the disc's first single, and it also stands a good chance of being the album's title, Jimmy Jam said. The song takes an even bolder approach than "Give It to You," Knight's debut solo single, which mixed accordions, hefty grooves and waltz breaks.

"The only way that we've been able to figure out how to describe the song is it's sort of Dean Martin meets Sisqó. You know how 'Give It to You' was quirky? This is the next level of quirky."

Knight has said the new material is on the whole more uptempo than his debut because he believes fans are craving fun, danceable music.

The singer also plans to do some recording in Los Angeles, but there was no word at press time who will produce the album's remaining tracks. The disc is expected in stores this spring.

Here is a post from Flyte Tyme (the website for Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis) somewhere around 2001:

Around the World for a Second Time

"Crazy." "Eclectic." "Danceable." Those are just some of the hype things that people are saying about Jordan Knight's upcoming sure-to-be-a-smash-hit record!

Jimmy & Terry produced seven tracks for the new album, which will be called Around The World With Jordan Knight. It will probably be released this July. 

Jimmy says "there's elements of everything from polka to doo-wop. It's crazy - a very eclectic record."

Jordan says the stuff he put together for this new album is way more up-tempo than his debut album because he thinks fans are craving really fun, danceable music.

Text saved from a post at on March 5, 2002: 

Just wanted to drop in and say hi and thanx to everyone! It's Jordan believe it or not. (not an imposter). I got all my music done (thank god), and had fun doin it (most importantly). Now I'm going through a little red tape before the record gets released. I'm not that fond of the corporate business world but it is the music "business" as they say .o.k. talk to yous later, gotta get on the PlayStation with Dante. peace!

Text saved from Jordan's website on April 11, 2002: 

Hey guys, don't at all be concerned about why I do my music. It is mainly to touch other people. Also, when you are working with a big money machine (Interscope), it takes time to convince them you're gonna make some money (unfortunate, but true). Hey they have people to answer to also. But don't ever think I'm doin it out of obligation, cuz I'm not. My album will be out soon enough, and hopefully everyone will be happy! Thanx for all the posts and I'll talk to ya later! 

From Jordan's former manager Miguel on June 14, 2002:

JK has moved on from Interscope and we are in talks with different companies that want to put the record out.

Text saved from Jordan's website on August 28, 2002:

Right now I'm pretty fed up with all record labels. I'm in the process of starting my own just for all of you. I really feel I have been hindered by the corporate world and my main passion is to get my music to my fans....that's it. So please be patient cuz I'm workin hard to get my music to you. I've already finished a couple songs I believe you'll enjoy. So just stay tuned to the website cuz it's coming quick. I've realized this is the best way for me to get my music to you. Always, thanks for all your love and confidence in me!

Here is a partial track list and clips of the songs if I was able to track them down. If anyone has better audio, or audio from any of the songs I don't have, send them my way! 


According to NKOTB History on Twitter, he released this song on September 7, 2004. I don't know if it was actually available for purchase. 

Video courtesy of Alex Clarke

Like That 

I believe they also considered this song as the first single since a radio station played it when Jordan did an interview with him. Thankfully someone recorded it! Producer Ron Fair also worked with him on this song. 

Video courtesy of MARI A

Truck & Fish 

One of the Jam and Lewis songs. Even this one must have been in consideration to be a single since someone was hired to create a music video concept for it. This audio was recorded off YouTube when the music video concept was posted. (The original video is no longer available.)

Around the World 

  • Title track of the album
  • Was the main song considered to be the first single

Radio station Z104 Madison played "Around the World" once in 2003 in a "new music" feature (it was probably a head-to-head battle with another new song). However, no one knew about it until after it was broadcast. So we know there is a studio version of this song out there somewhere! The radio station posted a small clip of the song on their website:

Video courtesy of Miya P

Here is audio from a live performance circa 2004 (if you know who originally recorded this, let me know!)

Rock The Night

  • Was featured in his 2004 solo tour

Below is audio only from a live performance from around 2004 (if you know who originally recorded this, let me know!)

Now Ya Know

  • This song might have actually been an unreleased song from "The Fix" rather than "Around the World". Here is a clip of Jordan performing it on Chicago's WGN Morning News. 

Video courtesy of HeatherSchultzMusic

On the Inside 

  • From Jimmy Jam: The song has a bit of a two-step feel to it (ala Craig David), and talks lyrically about loving someone so strong that even if you aren't physically there, you're still there on the inside.
  • Recorded with James Grear & Company
  • Was in consideration for the first single
  • Written by Jordan, Robin Thicke, and Jam and Lewis
  • (no audio found)

Players Get Broken Hearts Too 

  • One of Jimmy's personal favorites
  • (No audio found)


  • According to Jimmy Jam: "will feature a sexy duet with a popular female artist"
  • (No audio found)

Be With You Tonight

  • Was supposed to be a duet with Aaron Carter
  • Was a rumored song he was going to perform during his 2004 shows, but I don't think he ever did.
  • (No audio found)

So Sorry

  • Produced by Rodney Jerkins (aka Darkchild). Rumor was the song was later given to singer Josh Keaton.
  • (No audio found)

Underneath A Spanish Sky

  • Duet with Mya - was actually supposed to be on her album Fear of Flying but it was cut. Written by Diane Warren
  • (no audio found)

There are probably a few more that I don't have titles for. Let me know if you know of more!


Update: I came across this 2006 article I had saved in my files. It was just labeled "Edmonton article", so I don't know the exact source. He talks a bit about why "Around the World" was not released: 

You know you're getting old, says former New "Kid" on the Block Jordan Knight, when one of your latest singles lands on Billboard's adult contemporary charts.

Taken from Fix, an EP Knight released last fall, Where is Your Heart Tonight marks something of a comeback for the former teen pop star. He'll be performing the new single, along with tracks from his forthcoming album and, yes, old NKOTB favourites for his appearance at NAIT's Nest tomorrow night.

Knight says he's content to have singles hit the contemporary charts - Where is Your Heart Tonight sits admirably in the top 25 - because it's a sure way to break into pop radio. Whether his solo career will hit New Kid heights again ... "fuggedaboutit," says the boy from Boston.

"I embrace the New Kids memories. It was a fun part of my life, but it was such a huge phenomenon there's no way I'll ever experience that kind of success again as a solo artist,'' said Knight, during a recent phone interview. "It was a once-in-a-lifetime thing."

Being a former New Kid still has its perks, however. Like when Knight is shopping around work as a solo artist, the boy band rep still opens some doors. Still, there are times when no amount of clout makes a difference.

Before last year's release of Fix, whetting his fans' appetite for this year's full-fledged album, Knight's self-titled solo debut came out in 1999. The six-year gap in new material wasn't something he'd planned on.

"In 2001, I had another record ready to go - that was at Interscope. Right around that time, the whole Napster (music piracy) thing started getting out of control and Interscope started dropping a lot of artists," says Knight, himself included.

"So, I had to go back out and get another record deal. I couldn't use any of the material I had already recorded because they had all the masters. And those are some really great songs, and I'm not just tooting my own horn."

Knight says he still revisits the ill-fated sophomore solo album and the material doesn't sound dated, thanks in part to the production work of Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. However, it's unlikely that album will ever see light.

"I tried to get those tapes today - and I hate to use the word 'bast----,' but they were - they (the label) just didn't want to let them go. They put such an unrealistic price tag on them it wasn't worth paying for them. It's extremely frustrating because that's your work."

Next month marks NKOTB's 20th anniversary and the business foils of the music industry haven't changed much, Knight says. Though he became a New Kid just shy of 15, the band's producer and songwriter Maurice Starr always helped make the industry more transparent to the teens.

"Even back in the day, Maurice gave us a lot of creative input. Maurice let Donnie (Wahlberg) and I write on a couple of songs with him, and Maurice is a great guy to learn from. But nobody ever gave us much direction; we dressed the way we wanted to, for better or worse. The record companies are always going to have their two cents in, but I'm proud to say, for the most part, we had a handle on things."

Nowadays, Knight's still image-conscious, which is what made his appearance on VH-1's The Surreal Life in 2004 a loaded proposition. Offhand, he'd be inclined to agree the show's all about has-beens, but it's getting tougher to classify some Lifers that way now.

"You've got a guy like Flava Flav who's now on his third reality show. He's making almost a $1 million a year - he's back on top again," reasons Knight. "I was hesitant about doing it. Then I just thought, 'What the hell?' Now, I've opened myself up to a fan base I never knew existed. There are people in the audiences now who never even knew I was a New Kid - they just love reality TV and come to the shows because of The Surreal Life."

Tickets for the show are $20 and are available at the NAIT Students' Association office or at the Nest.


Anonymous said...

Great post, as always! I can’t imagine pouring your heart into your work only to be prevented from sharing it the way you wanted to. That must have been so frustrating.

Anonymous said...

I saw the post on youtube from Alex Clarke that he has more unreleased Jordan Knight songs - check comments under the song "Try". I don't know who Alex is but I hope he posts the rest.

Unique said...

I have only two questions if anyone could help me.
1. Why the duet between Jordan Knight and singer Mya never happened?
2. Who was the girl featured in NKOTB's CIWYW video in a black babydoll dress, she stood out among the other two women who were in Jordan's scenes. The other two dressed a like while she was in something different. She seemed shy and etc.