By Julie Tremaine published
We may call them boy bands, but that’s not what *NSYNC’s Chris Kirkpatrick prefers to be known as a member of. "We got classified as a boy band, but we always considered ourselves a vocal group,” he told TV Insider. “Looking up to Boyz II Men and all the vocal groups we looked up to, I think that is what keeps that staying power in music with the harmonies and the arrangements we did with each song.”
Kirkpatrick, along with former bandmates Lance Bass and Joey Fatone and members of many other ‘80s and ‘90s superstar “vocal groups,” will appear in A Very Boy Band Holiday on Dec. 6.
The ABC musical special will also feature Nick Lachey, Drew Lachey, Jeff Timmons and Justin Jeffre from 98 Degrees, Shawn Stockman and Wanya Morris from Boyz II Men, Bobby Brown and Michael Bivins from New Edition, Erik-Michael Estrada from O-Town, whom Kirkpatrick says was the brains behind the whole show.
Joey McIntyre from New Kids on the Block will perform the band’s holiday hit “This One’s for the Children” with his 14-year-old son Griffin McIntyre, an actor who has recently been appearing on Country Comfort on Netflix.
Fans of throwback boy bands aren’t the only ones excited to see this collaboration. “I think, for the most part, it was a reunion,” Kirkpatrick said. “With the Boyz II Men guys, New Edition, and even the New Kids, these were these bands we never worked with that much. 98 Degrees, O-Town, all those bands we’ve done so much with that we’ve all become good friends over the years.”
*NSYNC’s Fatone and Boyz II Men’s Morris also appeared this summer in Las Vegas with Nick Carter and AJ McLean from Backstreet Boys. The two will premiere a new Christmas duet on the show.
And if you’re worried you won’t hear *NSYNC’s most famous festive song, don’t be. “Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays” is on the performance list, in addition to holiday standards sung in nostalgia-inducing boy band harmonies.
“It was so much fun,” Kirkpatrick said. “We were all in each other’s trailers telling stories, talking about all the times our paths have crossed and what we’ve done.”
To him, the show reflects the spirit of the season. “I think it’s a great holiday idea because you’re getting collaborations with bands you used to look at as rivals. Now they’re coming together for Christmas,” Kirkpatrick said. “Just for us to be back out there performing and performing with these other bands, it’s what Christmas needs.”
Julie Tremaine is an award-winning food and travel writer who’s road tripping — and tasting — her way across the country. Her work appears in outlets like Vulture, Travel + Leisure, CNN Travel and Glamour, and she’s the Disneyland editor for SFGate. Read her work at Travel-Sip-Repeat.com.