Friday, October 6, 2023

NKOTB's interview with Hamiinat Magazine

There is an interview with the New Kids on the Block in the fall edition of Hamiinat Magazine! They are the official magazine for the Yaamava Casino & The San Manuel Band Of Mission Indians. You can get a free print copy at Yaamava casino or read the latest edition online here (The NKOTB article can be found on page 80 and 81)!

Russell Weakland, who interviewed the guys and wrote the article, also sent me the full interview with the guys!


You guys don't have a summer tour this time around, but you chose to come to Yaamava for two sold-out nights, being here for the second night, what is it about this stage, this theater, that really sticks out? Many artists, comedians, and others have come here and love it, and you have been on every stage yourselves, but what makes you love it?

Donnie Wahlberg - We aren't even having a little bit of a tour...

Joey McIntyre - Just sitting here actually is kind of cool because it's, you just see that we get to, it's a very big stage, so an act can do their thing just as big as an arena, but you'll also have it very intimate and it's obviously a really pretty theater. So in that respect, I mean, yeah, we can do our thing. 

Donnie Wahlberg - And if I can add to please, at least for me, I suspect all of us, there's still a, I don't know what the right word is, but there's still a, I think surprise. And for us, sometimes we still, I notice when we're on arena tours, for example, a lot of times we'll walk into an arena and we haven't played at it yet, and there are new ones now that we haven't played. And it's kind of like, "Wow", we have those wow moments in a room like this. There's definitely, what a beautiful room. And then when I look around a room like this and realize we're going to play in it, it's going to be full of people cheering for us. It's, it's very easy to tap into that feeling of being a kid and not knowing what to expect at a show. It is like, "Are people going to be here? Or, wow, we're in a bigger room than we've ever been in before." And imagining just that it's actually real, not imagining that's real, but sort of realizing this is we're really going to play in here. Always sort of, we're very focused on being ready to do the show and all that stuff. It's still kind of overwhelming at times to come into a room like this and just realize like, "Oh yeah, we're going to be the ones on stage." It's what we always wanted to do. So whether it's a tour or a one-stop show or 20,000 people or 5,000 people, there's an energy and sometimes even a more intimate room like this, this can be even more energizing and exciting than a larger room.

It gives the feeling of a beautiful Broadway theater. You've gotten the legacy question a million times and maybe even this question, but would you ever want NKOTBroadway? You see people like Bruce Springsteen do it, why not you all? Are we going to see a NKOTB Biopic movie? Donnie, you could even direct it... What is the vision for NKOTB in 10 and 20 years?

Donnie Wahlberg - Sure man! 

Jordan Knight - Those are things we've definitely talked about. Broadway, something like the Jersey Boys kind of thing. Frankie Valli. Yeah. And we've talked about doing stuff that, talked about a biopic and stuff like that, but I think we're all just kind of waiting for the right time or just the feeling of the right time to come to do those things. But there is definitely things we've seen other acts do and things that we think our group would be able to do, just waiting for the right time.

Another Boston legend just retired, Tom Brady...

Donnie Wahlberg - He's going there. He's going there right now! (LAUGHTER)

Tom Brady retired on top. 

Donnie Wahlberg - Yeah, he did.

You guys are on top. I don't want you guys to retire. I want the Broadway stuff and the tours and the biopics, but is retirement ever an option?

Joey McIntyre - Not an option. Retirement is not an option.

What keeps it still working, what keeps you still do it at such a top level, how do we keep this brotherhood intact, lots of bands breakup, you guys have really stood the test of time...

Joey McIntyre - I think so many bands. So many bands just don't have the benefit of staying together. And certainly our history, for starters, we took 14 years off. Well, you know what I'm saying? So that is a part of the equation. That being said, we had the opportunity to get back together and the more you stay together, the more of an opportunity you have to stay together, almost. And we get better at staying together. And that could look very simple as just leaving each other alone or letting people have their say and rolling with the ups and downs. And again, I think it ends with gratitude and we really do love each other, and we just so often reflect on how lucky we are. And then we wouldn't be anywhere without our fans. And they have such a good time, and they really are the sixth member. And just their enthusiasm and how much fun they have with each other and how much they're there for us is, it's just feeding. We feed off each other.

Donnie Wahlberg - Absolutely. Joe said something interesting too, connecting to your previous question. Because both were kind of legacy related, but I think the legacy part of us, it is so secondary to the relationship with the fans, what Joe just said, really, we have so much fun doing tours and coming up with these shows and going on new adventures and doing it really with a deep connection to our fans. So it's part of the conundrum that I don't think any of us are really thinking about the legacy of the band. We're just living in the moment as the band. 

It's probably a good thing more so than ever. 

Donnie Wahlberg - Yeah. Right. Yeah. I don't think anyone's out-finding reviews of the concerts. It was a wonderful night. The fans were ecstatic. We feel great. We put on a great show and onto tomorrow, let's go onto the next adventure. And so it also makes other, it's hard to, it's probably not the best business sense in terms of going beyond what we do every day. Meaning movies, plays, and documentaries. We just did a convention for our fans, and I probably was asked a few times, "Are you going to do a documentary about the convention?" It was like, "It's going to get in the way of the convention." I mean it's, I don't want cameras around 24 hours a day while I'm working on the convention. Sure. I'm sure the other guys don't, it's a lot to do. And I think it, thinking of anything other than the moment sometimes can really take us out of the moment. So it's a delicate dance. I think we are. It's what Jordan said. When the right moment comes along, Joey's the only one with Broadway experience. Someone might come along that really wants to tell the New Kids story. We may be ready to tell it. And then that may be someone he's worked with or we click with and then an energy happens that doesn't interfere with what we're doing. It doesn't totally take us away from the relationship with the fans. It enhances. It can be done in a way that's positive and not distracting or not for the wrong reasons. It's authentic and genuine. And then it will work with our relationship with the fans rather than convolute the relationship.

Joey McIntyre - Fans. Our fans, we have our fans, they just want to see us though. That's the thing. I don't think they want to see a show about us. They want to see us!

Donnie Wahlberg - We are going to be gone and they'll have our kids play us or something just to see what it was all about... (LAUGHTER)

Joey McIntyre - But you were saying more about the other version of what Springsteen did, and he actually was there every night. Which, that's more realistic than actually a show about us. That would be amazing...

Donnie Wahlberg - The fans would love that...

Joey McIntyre - Yeah, that would be pretty sick!

The fans are such a heartbeat, and it's literally genuine. I'm not just blowing smoke, because I was at a Masked Singer event, and there was a karaoke stage and I did 'Good Vibrations' by Marky Mark, Donnie's brother.... 

Donnie Wahlberg - We did it together baby!

Donnie came on stage, and stopped the DJ, Donny D on the backup. It was so much fun. I have been able to experience that fan bond. That heartbeat of your fans, obviously you're professionals, but where do you really get that genuine love for your fans, where is it from? Is it being from Massachusetts and your Boston roots, or something else?

Danny Wood  - I mean, I think it's the way we were brought up, our families. My family always made it about family. So when the five of us got together, this was an another family. And I think even when we were young, we treated the fans that way. We always tried to go out of our way for them, but now we're older and it's easier to have that connection with them. Everyone's grown up, everyone got families. And I think we can relate to them and they can relate to us, but it's just that synergy between us and them.

Donnie Wahlberg - Absolutely. I think we've matured over the years to be grateful for all of it. Maybe when we were 25 and tired of touring for five years straight, we walked out of a hotel and there were 50 fans there. It was like, "Oh gosh!" But now it's like, "Oh wow!" I think it's really turned into that. And that comes from gratitude..

When you do a performance that isn't a tour stop like here, how will it be different? Will we hear your solo stuff or any other surprises you put together for a special show like these two nights?

Jordan Knight - We've done our solo stuff before on New Kids shows, but not this time. 

Joey McIntyre - I mean, the good thing is... I mean, we got a lot of great songs, and the more we make new music, it's really most of the time, we have more and more, we don't need to our own stuff. We really don't need it. We got a lot to choose from. So... we are just going to give our fans exactly what they want...

What kind of advice would you give, because you have the finger on the pulse. A couple of years ago we were talking about one of your tours and Lady Gaga opened for you guys, you even performed a song together. You helped her out, you have so much knowledge to help the future. Would you want to be coaches or judges on a show like American Idol or The Voice? What's the main thing that you would really want to tell people that are trying to get into the music industry to be like you guys in any way...

Donnie Wahlberg - They need people like us... (LAUGHTER)

Joey McIntyre - It ain't easy... It ain't easy...I mean, I think one way to look at it is the people that are in this business are the people that have to be in this business. It is not always, I think Seinfeld said that about show business in particular. It's not the most talented people that make it. It's the people that show up every day and roll with the punches. And it's just the way it is. No matter. No matter. And even the most successful, you know, I mean the ups and downs and the rollercoaster of creating something that's important to you and sharing it with the world is, it's a trip. It's a trip. And that's why it's so great to be in a band. There's something about it you're, you're not doing it alone.  And people love freaking bands. There's just something about it... Just something about it. And I understand that and it's all good. It's like I'm doing a bunch of solo dates and it's great that I'm getting to do that, but Mick Jagger's amazing. But you just want to see the Stones. You know what I'm saying? It's like, and on and on and on. Yeah. And that's the gift of being in the band. And yeah. So try not to mess that up.

Well finally, because I know you have a million things, and obviously a show tonight but for all of you, if you were to be able to live another member's life for a day or maybe a week, who would you grab? And is there a reason why? 

Joey McIntyre - We all would choose Jon...

Danny Wood - Jon's life...

Joey McIntyre - He's got goats. I mean, the guy's got pet goats. 

Danny Wood - I mean chickens. He got the chickens, man. Fresh eggs. He's got it all.

Donnie Wahlberg - And we all would screw a screw. Or put a nail into a wall with a hammer. That's the other part. We're all totally in need of his building skills...

Joey McIntyre - He's so busy that he just wants a break. So we can take over for him for a few days...

How about you, Jon?

Jonathan Knight - I mean? I mean I couldn't pick one, everybody just has such interesting lives. I woke up this morning with pictures of Joe jumping in Lake Arrowhead. I was like, "Damn it. I should have woke up this morning and went!", Yeah, I think I could be all of them, truly!

1 comment:

Antonia said...

Thanks so much for posting the full interview!