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Who is AJ McLean? AJ McLean Explains Why the Backstreet Boys Solo Projects Never Divided Them!
AJ McLean is a West Palm Beach, Florida-based music artist, dancer, and actor. He is a member of the popular boy band ‘Backstreet Boys.’ The Backstreet Boys have nine studio albums to their credit, including Millennium (1999) and Black & Blue (2001). (2000). They have received eight Grammy nominations. Have It All, McLean’s solo album, was released in 2010. His filmography includes Dead 7 (2016) and The Lion Guard (Disney). He was cast as a celebrity contender on ABC’s Dancing with the Stars season 29 in 2020.
AJ McLean Early Life
McLean was born Alexander James McLean in West Palm Beach, Florida on January 9, 1978. Denise and Robert, his parents, split when he was a toddler. He has no brothers or sisters. McLean was brought up by his mother and grandparents Adolph and Ursula. He took a variety of dance classes as a child. He was also interested in acting and singing. McLean went to Kissimmee’s Osceola High School. During his senior year, Johnny worked with a tutor to complete his required courses while on tour with the Backstreet Boys.
AJ McLean Career
McLean began modeling at the age of five, with the help of his mother. At the age of six, he played “Dopey” in a school production of “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.” Following that, he appeared in the musicals The Nutcracker and ‘Fiddler on the Roof.’ McLean made his film debut at the age of eight in Tim Ritter’s slasher flick Truth or Dare? (1986). He played the major character’s younger self. McLean then played “Skunk” in the television series Hi Honey, I’m Home! (1991). Welcome Freshmen, Nickelodeon Guts, and Sabrina the Teenage Witch were among her early television appearances.
The Backstreet Boys were founded in 1993 in Orlando, Florida. It also includes Nick Carter, Howie Dorough, Brian Littrell, and Kevin Richardson, in addition to McLean. Jive Records published the group’s self-titled debut album in 1996. Backstreet’s Back, their second album, was released in 1997. Millennium, The Backstreet Boys’ third album, sold more than 24 million copies worldwide. The RIAA certified it 13x Platinum. Their fourth album, Black & Blue (2000), debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200. DNA, their ninth studio album, was released in January 2019.
— AJ McLean (@aj_mclean) August 19, 2022
AJ McLean Personal Life
AJ McLean stands 5 feet 9 inches tall and is of Puerto Rican, German, Scots-Irish, and English ancestry. His estimated net worth is $30 million. In the 1990s, McLean dated Marissa Jackson for six years. He later dated Amanda Latona, then Sarah Martin. In December 2011, McLean married Rochelle Karidis. Ava Jaymes and Lyric Dean are their two daughters.
Aj McLean Explains Why Solo Projects Never Divided the Backstreet Boys
For Backstreet Boys’ AJ McLean, pursuing a solo career doesn’t mean he has to step away from the band with which he’s performed for almost 30 years.
“Each thing goes hand in hand. If I have a successful album, it only reflects on my success with the group, where I started, and where I will always return to,” McLean told CNN en Español via Zoom.
The music business has seen time and again how bands like *NSYNC or One Direction have broken up for real when one or more members pursued their individual ventures, hurting hearts all around the world. However, McLean stated that when it comes to BSB, which has been active since 1993, “even if I have the most successful era solo, I’m still not going anywhere.”
“That is my home,” he said. “That is where I belong. But I don’t see there is a problem with having the best of both worlds.”
This solidarity, as well as knowing they have each other’s backs, has given them the confidence to pursue other opportunities. Kevin Richardson, who left the band for six years from 2006 to 2012, has done Broadway; Brian Littrell has released a Christian album, and Howie Dorough has released a children’s album. Meanwhile, Nick Carter has appeared in films, recorded solo albums, and formed Nick & Knight with Jordan Knight of New Kids on the Block.
Earlier this month, McLean released “Smoke,” the first single of his upcoming album “Se* and Bodies.”
“No pun intended, but I lit a cigarette and I was like, you know, sometimes relationships can be as easy as blowing smoke,” he said. “Like, that’s how easy it is if this person is the one. That’s kind of what inspired the title.”
“Se* and Bodies” will be McLean’s second solo album and is set to release in early 2023.
“It’s a great record, as I keep saying. I’m quite proud of it. And, while ‘Smoke’ is an excellent track, it is not the finest on the album.”
McLean is presently on tour with the Backstreet Boys in the United States. The Backstreet Boys are still going strong after three decades, as seen by the successful second leg of their DNA World Tour.
“The rest of the tour is sold out. Europe is sold out. Latin America is sold out,” McLean said. “It’s a testament to each other. It’s a testament to our fans, and it’s a testament to the music.”
He added: “I’m honored to say that I’m a Backstreet Boy, and I’m proud to be a Backstreet Boy in 2022.”