New Kids on the Block know a little something about the complicated nature of being in a mega popular boy band. Back in the day, they were at the forefront of the rise of dudes being thrown together to sing and dance for the adulation of tween girls worldwide. They actually got back together in 2008 and have been touring periodically ever since — sometimes alongside the Backstreet Boys as a sort of boy band Voltron. Their show on Thursday is going to be live streamed from the American Airlines Center in Dallas on Yahoo Live. To mark the occasion, NKOTB sat down with Yahoo Music.
While they discuss a handful of topics, most of the interest had to do with what the guys had to say about One Direction and the pressures of being in a boy band. One Direction, you could argue for convenience’s sake, are the New Kids on the Block of the modern era, and they recently suffered a blow when member Zayn Malik decided to move on. It’s something that pretty much every boy band can relate to, including the New Kids, as they disbanded in 1994 after Jonathan Knight left the group.
Alongside some groan-worthy puns on Zayn’s name, there’s some actual insight here. Donnie Wahlberg reassured fans that Zayn could return someday, saying “Embrace the leaving for personal growth time, then the reforming gives you a rejuvenation.” However, when discussing the pressure of being in a boy band, Wahlberg was less sympathetic, declaring, “Being in a boy band, it’s a busy time…you work your butts off, whatever. But you’re not digging ditches and jacking sidewalks and carrying heavy boxes around.”
One Direction fans could, in fact, take heart in the fact that NKOTB are touring all these years later after breaking up. Perhaps Zayn Malik will indeed return to One Direction someday. Of course, it was 14 years before NKOTB reunited, so maybe they shouldn’t get too excited. Or maybe they should just get into New Kids on the Block.