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joey mcintyre (interview from 2001)

Joey McIntyre's baby faced days are gone. A new chapter in his life, a new project. We went to the man himself to get full details on his sophomore solo album, Meet Joe Mac.

Lindzi.com: Let's get a few things straight here. Is it Joe or Joey?

Joey McIntyre: I go by both Joe and Joey. Joey is more like a stage name for me. My friends call me Joe, but Joe McIntyre sounds like a politician's name or something.

Lindzi.com: How does Meet Joe Mac compare to your last album?

Joey McIntyre: It's more conversational. It's more of what's going on in my life right now -- as opposed to your average love song. It's about the decisions that life brings up; like "What am I going to do to make my life better?" as opposed to, "What is the love of my life going to do to make my life better?"

Lindzi.com: What have you learned through out your career?

Joey McIntyre: It's hard to say what I've learned in the past. I know I've been in the business a long time. I just look at my past with the New Kids and am happy that I got out of it alive. It was fun, but it was pretty crazy for a while. Now I feel like I'm making music and doing what I love to do. I also have a bit of a normal life. I have more control and feel like I can control my own destiny. I have more power over what I want. To me, that's the best kind of freedom there is.

Lindzi.com: Then, you prefer the solo act to the boy band thing?

Joey McIntyre: There's nothing like being in with a team and going after your dreams, but I also have to call my own shots. I have to be doing what I want to do.

Lindzi.com: How much pressure did you feel to create a Pop/R&B type of album?

Joey McIntyre: There's no pressure really. My first album that came out in '99, I did on my own and produced on my own. Then, Columbia picked it up. The same thing happened again. Columbia and I went our separate ways because I wanted creative freedom. I'm lucky that I'm now with a record label that supports me. There really is no pressure. I do what I want to do. You're not always going to make everybody happy. Sometimes when you make your own decisions you have to take a longer, tougher path. I like it that way.

Lindzi.com: Definitely! And the album is quite eclectic. Some songs have a soft rock sound, others country, and, then, there's Walkin' My Baby Back Home, which sounds as though it could be straight from a musical.

Joey McIntyre: I can dig what you mean. It's got a worldly vibe to it. I grew up listening to Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole with my father. I've been in musicals since I was six. I'm very much a traditionalist as far as music is concerned. I think that's cool to bring that into rock and pop music.

Lindzi.com: What experiences influenced your first single, Rain?

Joey McIntyre: I've been through a lot this last year. I hate to talk about it... {hesitates} ...but I was engaged a little over a year ago. It sucks because I hate when she reads it and that's her whole existence in one little blurb. She's awesome, but I just wasn't ready. It's been a really up and down year for me; sometimes feeling like I don't know what I want or who I am. I let that out in Rain. It's about self-exploration. I've had to stand up to myself and really take charge. It's about having the guts to go far. With a lot of songs, there's a happy ending. Often, it'll be about that one true love that did it for you. There's always the perfect ending. I don't think life is like that. Life is perfection in itself. It's imperfectly perfect. It's nothing glamorous and nothing spectacular, but that's the beauty of life.

Lindzi.com: Mrs. Callahan is another great song. I was trying to decipher it's meaning. What inspired it?

Joey McIntyre: Yeah... that's another one... It was hard for me to have a song about my best friend who got into some trouble. He's doing okay. That was part of the inspiration. {hesitates} He ended up getting into drugs... bad. I'm not saying I'm perfect, but... The song is really about the relationship between a parent and a child. That's why I say that I could write it about my family. I saw my brother struggle as the first boy after seven girls. I came after him. He was the guinea pig. It's about how a parent can think they got it all right, but they have no control over it. The song was an outlet for what I was thinking. It's saying, "Let's just listen to each other and get over the pride that we put in between us." For instance, my father will be stubborn because my brother isn't doing exactly what he wants. My father would never deny his father. He feels if he didn't treat his father a certain way, his son shouldn't do that to him. The world changes and the family changes. The way we interact with each other changes and that's what we have to be open to.

Lindzi.com: On a lighter note, you hosted MTV's Say What Karaoke this past year. What's a song that you like to do karaoke to?

Joey McIntyre: There's a club called Moomba in New York. They do Karaoke way too late. It's like power karaoke. It's a lot of actresses and actors and models. It's a scene. I've been there a couple times and I did Twist and Shout. I like rock and roll songs. I got the inspiration from Matthew Broderick in Ferris Buller's Day Off; like in the parade. I think I went a little over board, though. I guess I'm too much a performer. I took it too seriously. {laughs}

Lindzi.com: You've been through so much with your career. What has been your greatest experience?

Joey McIntyre: So much happened with New Kids, but my last album was pretty memorable. Just the action of believing in myself. Getting it out there on my own. The big label picking it up. The gold single. The gold album. In my home town, there's the Boston Music Awards and I got "Single of the Year." That night was cool because I got to perform in my hometown. There's been so many things, though.

Lindzi.com: What quality do you like most about yourself?

Joey McIntyre: I'm understanding with people. I have an open heart and I'm not too uptight.

Lindzi.com: On the switch side, what do you like least?

Joey McIntyre: I'm moody. I get rude sometimes. Like when my manager swears something happened one way. I'll tell him that it didn't happen that way and he'll insist that it did. It could be a little thing. I get so anal about stuff.

Lindzi.com: What's the strangest thing a reporter has asked you?

Joey McIntyre: It's weird when people ask you to sing to them. {pauses} Or, on TV, they'll ask you to do something really stupid. Dumb stuff that would never be done, but they think just because it's on TV it's going to look good. They make you look like an idiot.

Lindzi.com: What drives you insane?

Joey McIntyre: You know what's insane? I'm getting into power yoga. It's the best insanity there is! It's like 100 degrees in the room and it's an hour and a half long. You're just pouring sweat as if it's raining outside. It's the best workout in the world. It's good insanity!

Lindzi.com: What's a question you've never been asked that you'd like to answer?

Joey McIntyre: That's a naughty question. {after much thought} The question would be, "What makes you such a great songwriter?" {laughs} See, I wouldn't know because I'd never be asked that question! I'm just being facetious. That's a tough one.

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