Howie D of Backstreet Boys and Pauly D Talk "In a World Like This Tour"
Tue, 03 Sep 2013 09:00:30
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Backstreet Boys are back in the biggest way possible. Welcoming Kevin Richardson into the fold again, they recently dropped their best album yet, In a World Like This [KBAHN / BMG], and they're on tour supporting it at the moment. The jaunt had to be an event no one would forget so they enlisted DJ Pauly D along for the ride. Together, they're giving fans across the country an epic evening on par with their biggest runs.
ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief brought Howie Dorough [Howie D] of Backstreet Boys and Pauly D together for this exclusive interview about the In a World Like This tour, potential collaborating, discovering music, and lap dances from Britney Spears…
When did the idea for this tour come about?
Howie D: All of the guys are definitely big fans of Pauly D and the show he was on Jersey Shore (TV Series). Coincidentally, a friend of mine was a producer on the show, and he told me what a great guy Pauly was. Personally, I know his manager, and I had the opportunity to open up for Britney Spears like a year ago. During a time when Pauly had a couple of weeks off, I was lucky enough to get the slot to open up for her. I was talking to his manager, and he was like, "It'd be the perfect combination for Pauly to come out with Backstreet Boys". I said, "Definitely! I'll tell the guys". We were all totally into it. It's a great combo that attracts the same kind of crowd—mostly girls [Laughs]. It's perfect.
Pauly D: It was huge. When the offer came through to me, it was a no-brainer. To me, this tour is legendary. The Backstreet Boys came back together with this huge tour. For me to be a part of this legendary tour, I was touched. It was breathtaking. It's amazing to be a part of it. To see these guys perform is incredible. They put on a crazy show, and the crowds are phenomenal. We're doing amphitheaters in every state. For me to be doing Amphitheaters with a huge act, it's like a dream come true.
Howie D: Thanks man! I appreciate that. I told the guys, "Dudes, if we don't go for this, I'm reaching out to Pauly D, and I'm going to talk to him about doing a Double D's tour—Pauly D and Howie D out on our own!"
Pauly D: [Laughs] Exactly!
Howie D: For the next tour, we're going to have to figure something out.
There's still time for a Double D's tour.
Pauly D: I would love that. Pauly D and Howie D hit the world [Laughs].
When did you guys first meet?
Pauly D: It was on the tour.
Howie D: If I recall correctly, we were backstage before the after party the second day. My wife and kids met you the day before. She said you're a really cool guy. Coincidentally, we have some help out here. Our nanny Alyssa is in love with Pauly D. She was so excited. I think I'm going to probably pay her a half-rate on the tour, because it's more of a pleasure for her to be on it [Laughs]. But, she said she had seen Pauly the night before. I bumped into him before he went on stage, and we had a chance to say hi. Then, I invited him to the after party. He was gracious enough to come over and hang. He got up on stage and spun. The crowd went crazy! It was just cool. My wife is from New Jersey. Being from that area, they hit it off really well. I love going up to that area too. The shore is cool. There are some good people up there.
What goes into doing a show for both of you?
Pauly D: For me, it's really cool. We're literally doing a different state every day with few days off. There's not much time to prepare. Being a DJ, I have a big role opening for Backstreet Boys. I have to get the crowd going and hyped. I need to warm them up. I love that role. I take on the challenge. I like to give the audience an experience they can take with them and talk about for the next couple of years like, "I saw Pauly D with Backstreet Boys, and that was an amazing tour!" That's what I want them to get out of it.
Howie D: You do a great job of it dude, honestly. I've had a couple of chances to get out there and see his show. I actually got my son out there, and he does the Pauly D fist pump every time I turn around [Laughs]. Pauly does an incredible job of warming the crowd up. When I look out there, the girls are going nuts. It's a perfect match. They are hyped and ready for us. With us, it's a different show. We're moving around and dancing. On this tour, we purposefully decided not to take a band because we wanted it to be all about the five of us. We put about a month-and-a-half of rehearsals in to put on a great show where the fans don't feel like they're missing a band at all and the focus is on us after twenty years being together and having Kevin back. Between Pauly's production with his DJ rig and all his L.E.D. lights and all of our lights, the fans are getting the full visual. Their eyes are probably going berserk by the end of the night.
Pauly D: I agree.
Surely all of the shows have been great, but which gigs stuck out for you?
Pauly D: For me, it was really cool to do the East Coast shows. When I was close to home in Boston and New Jersey, all of my friends and family came out. It was like me DJing at home. I'd have to say those are my favorites. I've been really taken aback by all of the shows though. I've never been to some of these places before. We were just in Tupelo, and I was like, "Wow, that crowd was amazing! They were loud and interactive". I'd never known that prior!
Howie D: I agree with you. The smaller cities like Tupelo and places like Alabama, you think, "Are they going to be into us?" Then, they're totally rocking. For me, it was also some of the places Pauly said. The fact that my wife is from New Jersey, we have a lot of family up there. PNC was crazy as well! I'm from Florida. Getting down to Tampa and West Palm, all of my family was there, and it gives you a little bit of anxiety because you're trying to put on the best show. I love getting in, but I love getting out as well!
Pauly D: [Laughs] Yup!
How did you both first discover music?
Pauly D: It's funny. I've always been around music my whole life. My mother is a huge music lover. She would clean the house every single Sunday. I remember crawling around listening to her music loud. I just loved music! She was playing Michael Jackson. I went and got that record. It was a 45. From then on, I was like, "I want to do this. I like music loud. I want to play it!" I bought myself some DJ equipment, and I was in my room playing around. Then, I got one birthday party to do. From that moment when I had that crowd captured, I was like, "This is what I want to do. I love it!" Gig after gig, I kept updating my equipment and getting more stuff. Before I knew it, I was doing clubs. One club would lead to another club. I was DJing like six nights a week in little old Rhode Island. I was loving life. Then, I got on the show!
Howie D: I have a sister who's eleven years older than me. When I was about six-years-old, she was doing beauty pageants and singing. She dragged me along to one audition for The Wizard of Oz musical. They were looking for a bunch of little kids to play munchkins. She said, "My little brother sings!" I said, "Alright, I'll try it". They asked me to be in the show, and I was one of the Lollipop field guys or whatever [Laughs]. From that point, I got the bug. I was lucky enough that my parents were really supportive and helped me get into children's theater and doing a bunch of musicals. Like Pauly said, I looked up to Michael Jackson. When I was like 14-years-old, I got close to being in Menudo. I got called to audition. Unfortunately, I didn't know Spanish fluently. It was the start though. If I recall correctly, my mom found the address for the New Kids on the Block fan club, and she sent a cassette tape to them. I'm sure it right went into the garbage [Laughs]. I joke around with the New Kids guys to see if they ever heard it or not, and they have no idea what the hell I'm talking about it. Starting in Orlando, there wasn't a whole lot going on there. I was doing everything, singing, dancing, and acting to try to get a break somehow. At 19-years-old, I got my break with the guys in the group. We've been lucky to even have opportunities to do things outside of Backstreet Boys. I put out a solo record a year-and-a-half ago.
Pauly, when did you first hear Backstreet Boys?
Pauly D: I was a huge fan since day one. I loved TRL. I miss those TRL days sometimes. These guys had charisma, crowd presence, and real talent. To be a part of it now is amazing.
What's the defining moment of your musical careers? What can you both point to as the biggest thing?
Pauly D: This tour is one of the biggest moments for me. I toured with Britney Spears before this, and Britney gave me a lap dance. That was probably my most memorable moment [Laughs]. Don't get any ideas though Howie! I'm not looking for a lap dance [Laughs].
Howie D: I was trying to get one too when I played with her. It didn't work out for me [Laughs]. I'm glad you got one!
Pauly D: That was dope! Not many people can say that in their lifetime—like, "Britney Spears gave me a lap dance". I was pretty stoked. I still am.
Howie D: I heard about that going on. I didn't get lucky enough! [Laughs] We've been blessed with so much. I remember the first gold record we got in Germany 17 years ago when we were first starting. That was a memorable moment. I remember the first MTV award we got in Europe. Then, we came home to the states and got one here. Getting up on stage and singing with Elton John, Stevie Wonder, and Lionel Richie was amazing. More recently, we got our star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Being there next to Boyz II Men and knowing we have a star forever, it's humbling and incredible.
What are the chances of you two collaborating?
Pauly D: That'd be dope.
Howie D: We would love to! I know Nick had mentioned to Pauly if he's interested in doing anything with us, whether it's a track or a remix, we're into it! After this tour, I'm going to keep in touch with Pauly to do that Double D's tour [Laughs]. I think that would be quite a fun experience.
Pauly D: Absolutely! I'm down, we'll definitely keep in touch after this tour and hopefully work on some music too.
Who have you been listening to?
Pauly D: Right now, I've got the new Jay-Z album Magna Carta...Holy Grail. That's popping. I like the new Kanye West album Yeezus. It's different. I really like it.
Howie D: We've been doing a lot of these after parties. Pauly is spinning, and Kevin and I are hyping the crowd. I'm listening to a lot of what's current like the new dance stuff out there. I'm a huge Bruno Mars fan. When I'm trying to chill and relax, I'll pop on some Maxwell or Sade depending on what kind of groove I want to get on with my wife [Laughs].
How different is touring having a family, Howie?
Howie D: It's different. I joke that back in the day we had bottle service in the club, and now we have baby bottle service. Times have changed a little bit. I just turned forty the other day. To know we've been doing this for twenty years strong is crazy. I don't feel forty. I feel twenty. I've got a lot of energy. We put in twelve hour days. It's a lot of work, but it's a lot of fun. We're blessed we're able to take our families out on the road. We're able to not miss home so much.
Pauly, are you going to hit up the Backstreet Boys cruise this year?
Pauly D: I would love to! I've heard a lot about it.
Howie D: You've got to come! It's a lot of fun. All of my single guy friends are always begging to come. It's a great spot for a single guy [Laughs]. The odds are good. There's a lot of drinking going on and not a lot of sleeping [Laughs].
What's next for you both?
Pauly D: I've got the residency in Las Vegas. I'm still DJing there, and I've got one in Atlantic City as well. I'm working on my album. I've got a single dropping at the end of September called "Clothes Off". It's with Big Sean and Christina Milian. I'm excited about it!
Howie D: We're finishing this tour. Then we have two weeks off. I'll take a little birthday vacation because I didn't get a chance to get away. Next year, we start filling in the rest of the countries, and we'll probably be back in the studio as well.
Plus, you have to find time for the Double D's tour. Can't wait to see what the t-shirt looks like…
Pauly D: [Laughs] Yup!
Have you seen the show? What's your favorite Backstreet Boys song?