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Prologue: The Interview

August 2004

"These guys are great. No matter how huge their careers have gotten, they haven't changed. Our guest for today, here for a full hour, is 'N Sync." The hostess introduced as the screams in the audience got louder. The guys in the music group stood; ready to perform under the dimmed lights.

"Here they are performing their new single, Halfway Somewhere." She continued.

The music cued and they performed the same routine as always. While the audience cheered them on as always. At the end of the opening performance the show cut away to a commercial. Three minutes later it returned, with the five guys seated like normal around the interviewer's desk.

"Welcome you guys. It's been awhile since you've been on this show. How is everyone doing?" The hostess asked. A chorus of 'greats' and 'we're doing fine' resounded. A few screams of undying devotion echoed back from the audience.

"So I have to ask, because it's a must know, who has a girlfriend?" She asked. Three of them raised their hands and the hostess nodded for them to continue.

"Britney," Justin answered with a grin, "and that's not going to change." He stated listening to a few of the reactions in the audience.

"I'm working on it." Chris answered looking off to the side and winked at whomever he was talking about.

"He's trying to hook up with our new PR." JC explained, "She refuses though." This elicited a few snickers from the others.

"How is your daughter doing Joey?" The hostess asked looking over at him, where he sat at the end.

"She is doing great." He smiled.

"That's great," She smiled. "Well today's show is going to run a little differently. We asked two of your mother's to come in and go out into the audience to get questions. We will get start right after this next break."

The camera cut off. When they returned from the break the camera was panned on Lynn Harless and a girl around fifteen.

"Go ahead sweetie." Mrs. Harless said into the microphone and then held it in front of the young teenager.

"What's life like on the road?" She asked.

Chris was the first to speak up, "Tiring! We've been on the road pretty much all month, and we'll be on the road all next month and the month after that! You kinda get used to living out of a suitcase."

"Thanks." The girl smiled. The camera's switched from the one on Mrs. Harless to Lance's mom.

"This is Nicole." Mrs. Bass said, "You ready?" The younger girl nodded.

"What is it like to get up on stage and sing to hundreds of screaming girls who supposedly love you?" Nicole asked smiling wildly.

"It's very flattering! It's a good feeling--to know people appreciate your music and they're singing your songs. It's a great feeling when you know a lot of people are listening to your album." Joey answered.

"How long have you guys been singing?" This was the next question.

"We've been singing different amounts of time. Justin started at age zero. He did the Mickey Mouse Club with JC, who started singing in ninth grade. I started like in junior high. Chris started when he was a baby and he worked at Universal Studio with Joey." Lance answered.

Joey added, "I tried singing as a baby but it didn't work!" The crowd laughed.

"Has there ever been a time when you accidentally sang the wrong words during a song or you did the wrong dance move on stage?"

"Dancing sometimes turns into a nightmare! You go blank. We miss steps quite a bit, and sometimes you mess up some words and you'll trip over your own mouth! You start to say one thing and your mind gets ahead of you because you've sung the song so many times and you kind of get past it in your mind, and you're not supposed to be there yet!" JC answered this one.

"Does anyone else ever do that?" The hostess asked.

"Oh, everyone does it! Like we'll all be dancing, and you're the only one doing the wrong dance step and you're like, 'Whoops! What happened over there? I did something wrong!'" Joey answered laughingly.

"Have you guys ever started laughing at one another?" She added.

"Well, yeah, or sometimes we'll just give each other that look like, 'You're an idiot!'" Lance said.

"We'll be right back with more questions by you and answered by 'N Sync." The hostess stated looking into the camera. Two minutes later they returned, "All right we are back. With us today is 'N Sync and they are answering your questions."

The camera panned into the audience once again.

"What are some of your embarrassing moments?"

"Sometimes we do quick changes, and one time I went on stage with my zipper down!" Joey answered.

"How did you figure that out?" The hostess asked.

"I was just dancin' and... I don't know. I just felt a breeze, I guess. I thought I just had to fix my belt, and I was like, 'Whoa!'" Joey laughed.

Chris added, "We were doing a show one time, and there were a bunch of different acts. At the end, each group was supposed to come out real quick and then take these positions on stage. Well, we were the next behind this group and her dancers, and Lance didn't realize we were going out one group at a time."

"We were going out for a finale, and I thought it was time for all the groups to go out at the same time, but there was still one group left to sing." Lance said.

"Lance thought it was the finale so they went out, and Lance went out with them. When he realized they were all doin' their thing and none of us were out there with them, he was like, 'I'm goin' back!'"

"I kinda stood out because I had black-and-white leather on, and they had on neon orange!"

The next question was, "Has there ever been a time you just wanted to pack up you stuff and leave?"

"No way!" Chris nearly shouted.

"That goes for all of us." Justin added.

"Maybe wanted to sleep for a day. But never leave!" Lance said.

"I think there have been some times where we wanted to slow down for a second." Justin stated.

"There've been times when we wanted to kick Lance out." Chris joked.

"Probably several times." Lance added with a laugh.

"No, please, we're just kidding." Chris shook his head.

"When we come back 'N Sync is going to perform for us one more time. And we'll have time for one last question." The hostess spoke up amidst the ruckus the boys were creating.

When the show came back the guys were sitting on stools ready to sing a ballad. The opening notes to This I Promise You started up and Justin sang the first note. After the song was over the hostess walked over to where the group was sitting.

"I get to ask the last question before we sign off for the day." She asked, "How would you describe each other?"

"Joey is the charismatic, flirty one! He likes to talk to girls a lot! His best quality is that he knows how to turn the other cheek in a bad situation. He's like the worst comedian I've ever met! He is the worst joke teller." JC stated.

"He does cheesy '80s comedy." Justin added.

"JC is the very serious one, and he likes to sleep a lot. He got a new keyboard, and he plays it 24 hours!" Lance spoke.

"That doesn't have anything to do with my personality." JC laughed.

"It is your personality now! Your keyboard has taken over! It is you!" Lance responded.

"Lance is all about business. He comes in with a cell phone wrapped around his hand. He's actually managing a country singer right now. If he wasn't singing, he'd be managing a group." Chris said.

Justin spoke up, "Chris is crazy, man! He's very high energy. Sometimes, we have to tell him to tone it down. He's always up into the crowd. It's great to have someone with that energy because when we get tired and we feel like we can't go anymore, Chris is like, you know. . ."

"Chris is our Jolt cola!" Joey laughed.

"Chris is our caffeine! He's got a good sense of music, also. He sings the high stuff, so he's got a cool voice!" Justin stated.

"Thanks dude!" Chris said playfully reaching over and giving him a hug.

"No problem!" Justin smiled.

"Justin is like our athletic dude! He always loves playing basketball! Whenever he has the time, he does a lot of working out! He does the working out for most of us." Joey started talking about Justin.

"He works out for all of us!" JC added.

"Yeah, that's what I meant to say!" Joey said loudly.

"Little tied-tongued?" Justin joked.

"Tongue-tied." Joey corrected and laughed.

"That was a joke!" Justin spoke up.

"I got it! That's why I laughed!" Joey laughed.

"He didn't laugh!" Justin pouted.

"I did laugh! Anyways, he's a sporty guy, and he's very mature for his age, even though he's only 23*. He's always thinking ahead and trying to be successful." Joey stuck up for himself.

"I'll stop this before it gets out of hand," The hostess spoke up over Joey, "Thanks for being with us today guys. Join us tomorrow when we have Josh Hartnett."

Part I: Pennsylvania
Brothers Index

(Interview questions and answers from Girls' Life: Readers Take Over Issue 1999)
(* "only 17" in original context)