- Jordan Knight (photo: Brianne Nemiroff)
If you were to ask a teenager who Jordan Knight is, they probably wouldn’t know. But ask any woman between the age of 25 and 50 who he is, and you’ll probably see their eyes bulge out of their head as they begin to profess their love for him.
Jordan Knight is the lead singer of New Kids on the Block, the original boy band that hit it big in the '80s and sold over 70 million albums worldwide. He's also sold 1.5 million copies of his solo albums. Today, those fans are still around, as proven by the audience at The Fillmore in Silver Spring, Md., on Sunday night.
There were women waiting in line to see the pop star hours before his performance. Some wore vintage NKOTB T-shirts, and some women just looked vintage themselves. But they were there to meet their teenage idol, to meet the guy in the poster on their bedroom wall that they kissed all throughout high school. Knight met and took a picture with every person who purchased a VIP ticket, as well as some radio contest winners, and let them watch his sound check.
Pleasing one woman is hard enough, but Knight had to entertain hundreds and seemed to do it effortlessly, at least to his fans. Behind the scenes, however, he let his guard down, and it was obvious that he was exhausted. But by still going on only an hour later to perform for his fans, it only proved to me more how dedicated he was to each and every one of them.
Knight performed a 90-minute set consisting of tracks off of his latest release, Unfinished, his first solo album, Jordan Knight, as well as an NKOTB track, “You Got It (The Right Stuff).”
Knight appears to have been touring non-stop since 2008 when New Kids on the Block reunited, released an album, and toured after a 14-year break.
“To see the fans after all this time is pretty wonderful. To go away for that long and to see all of our fans still there is pretty mind-blowing,” Knight said.
Following that release, NKOTB decided to collaborate with another boy band, The Backstreet Boys, for a tour and collaborative album release, under the name NKOTBSB.
“It was fun," he said. "A lot of people thought we didn’t get along or wouldn’t get along. They’re very talented individuals and they have a lot of great songs that people love. The combination just fit: two boy bands coming together. I don’t think two boy bands have ever done that before. For us to do that, we paved the way for other boy bands once again by doing that tour, showing that you don’t have to be rivals. You can actually team up to do something big.”
The tour was a huge success across the U.S. and they are set to perform the European leg of the tour this summer.
Unfinished encompasses the current music trends of Dance/Pop and blends them with his own Pop/R&B style. Knight’s tracks are very upbeat and fun, usually about love and relationships. When I asked him why, his answer was particularly humorous as well as bluntly honest.
“My audience happens to be 99 percent female. It might be a good idea to write a little bit about love and relationships. I also like to write fun, sexy songs like ‘O-Face’ and ‘Up and Down’ and ‘Give It to You’. Those kinds of song are fun, sassy, and frisky. I like them and my fans like them.”
Talking to Knight about his music, you could tell that he loves what he does and always writes with his fans in mind.
“I pictured [the fans] driving in their cars, out running, or doing stuff around the house, just being able to put on their headphones and listen to it and be swept away. The main thing about music is that you have to make sure that it has an emotional connection and that’s what I really wanted: to make sure that there was substance to it and that you could draw out any emotion that it may be.”
Knight has three more tour dates left on his solo tour before he returns to touring with NKOTBSB. If you didn’t catch him in Silver Spring, he will be performing in Philadelphia, New York City, and in Foxborough, Mass., this weekend.