Can teen idol-turned-pop prince Nick Jonas achieve that (nearly) impossible dream: Hollywood superstardom? He says Yes.
There’s a truism about passing time and shifting generational pop culture that comedian Billy Crystal once pointed to when his daughter asked, “Dad, did you know Paul McCartney was in a band before Wings?” Having emerged in recent years as a solo pop star and increasingly in-demand actor, Nick Jonas today is living his own variation on that theme. The 21st-century take might be, “Did you know Nick Jonas used to be in a band with his brothers?”
“It’s funny that that’s already happening,” laughs Jonas, who just three years ago decided, with his siblings Joe and Kevin, to end their phenomenally popular band, the Jonas Brothers, and pursue individual creative interests, leading Nick to reinvent himself as a chart-topping, critically admired musical artist in his own right. His third and latest album, Last Year Was Complicated, delivered the hit single “Close” and made his current Future Now Tour, which he co-headlines with close pal Demi Lovato, one of the summer’s hottest tickets.
Simultaneously, Jonas emerged as an actor of considerable range and charisma. He made a physically powerful impression in the mixed martial arts drama series Kingdom, deftly handled humor both subtle and broad on Fox’s horror/comedy Scream Queens, and delivers an utterly convincing turn as one of a pair of brothers caught up in a harrowing cycle of fraternity hazing in the new film Goat, out this fall.
“The less and less I’m introduced as ‘Nick Jonas, formerly of the Jonas Brothers,’ [the more] there’s just an awareness of now,” says the 24-year-old. “It doesn’t happen overnight. It takes a lot of hard work and patience, but it’s exciting when people start to recognize you for what you’re doing in the moment and see you for that.”
The evolution, he admits, was daunting. “I was unsure of what was going to be next,” he says. “I knew that I had a lot of music I wanted to make and a lot of acting projects that I wanted to pursue, but nothing’s ever guaranteed. I was incredibly relieved when some things started to come together. Within two weeks of leaving the band, I wrote ‘Jealous,’ which was a song that would change my life and career, and I also booked Kingdom. So it was all happening!”
“It’s exciting when people start to recognize you for what you’re doing in the moment, and see you for that.” —Nick Jonas
Much of the brothers’ blockbuster brand, of course, was built with their on-camera roles in the Disney Channel’s Camp Rock movies and Jonas series, but Jonas’s own acting aspirations had been fueled since childhood stints on Broadway in productions like A Christmas Carol and Beauty and the Beast. “Acting has always been important to me,” he says. “It was a great foundation, and then as I got older, I found some great roles that pushed me a bit. Once I read the script for Kingdom, I realized pretty quickly that it was something I would have to fight for, but that it would be worth it if I just sunk my teeth in and really tried to challenge myself.”
Indeed, although some may have looked askance at the casting of the former teen idol as a closeted gay MMA fighter in one of the grittiest series of the moment, Jonas quickly dispelled any apprehension with his commitment to the material, both physically and emotionally. “So much of these fighters’ lives is played out in a physical sense—their job is to get in a cage and beat somebody up,” he says. “But also, at times, the reason they’re fighting is because they’re running from something. So I have a great time working with my coach and trying to find ways to really show each layer.”
Having been publicly perceived as the archetypal “Serious One” among his bandmates, Jonas surprised even his truest believers, as well, with his facility for straight-faced comedy as seen on Scream Queens. He admits that he chooses his words carefully in his own life, but on Screen Queens he loosened up in his bid to find his own comedic tone: “I have to read a line 100 different ways before I know the way I’m going to deliver it, and just see which one I think is funny and roll with that.”
With the critically acclaimed, James Franco-produced Goat, which garnered glowing nods for Jonas’s performance at Sundance, the actor shocked even himself. “When I first read for it, I thought I bombed the audition. I thought I did terrible! I was really relieved when I got it.” The film’s director, Andrew Neel, however, recognized the elusive but key quality Jonas was bringing to the performance. “For most of the film [Nick’s character, Brett] doesn’t approve of his brother, and Nick was able to do this while maintaining a strong sense of love and affection,” says Neel. “He drew a lot from his relationships with his own brothers.”
Identifiable motifs begin to emerge while discussing Jonas’s professional output: experimentation, challenging oneself, testing limits. “On the music front, I try to grow every day and expose myself to new and exciting things to be inspired by, whether it’s people I’m collaborating with or just new music that I’m getting introduced to. I think that you’ve got to keep an attitude of never wanting to stop growing,” he says. “Then on the acting side, I’m drawn to darker projects, things that are dramatic, intense, and really push me—but also mixing in some of these great opportunities for things that continue to show my comedy side as well. Having many layers to ‘all things Nick Jonas’ is kind of the key.”
He credits the success of his latest music to his commitment to documenting his emotional journey after a breakup that was even more shattering than parting ways with his siblings: his split with model/beauty queen Olivia Culpo after a two-year relationship.
“On the acting side, I’m drawn to darker projects… having many layers to ‘all things Nick Jonas’ is kind of the key.” —Nick Jonas
“Heartbreak is a theme that a lot of people relate to—the challenges of the next steps in your life, and when some doors close, and how you approach the next ones opening,” he says. “I saw pretty quickly that it was a lot of what my fans could relate to.” But it wasn’t initially easy to translate his personal pain into hooky lyrics. “It’s nerve-wracking when [the feelings] are as personal as the ones that I shared were. But I feel relieved when I use my writing as a way to process—it’s very therapeutic.”
These days, dating hasn’t been a priority—but Jonas is still putting himself out there “a little bit.” “I’ve been pretty busy!” he explains. “It’s been challenging to find any time on that front. But it’s also a choice I made to just have this season of my life be solo, so that I can make the most of all I’m trying to accomplish. I’ve got plenty of time, at 24. I mean I hope I have plenty of time!”
As for that other central personal relationship—the one with his brothers—the professional split was “the best thing that ever happened to us. It has allowed for us to just be family,” he says. “Joe and I live together in LA. We have a home there together—we’re very, very close. My brother Kevin and his wife have a baby and another one on the way. He’s now into his next step, which is in the tech world, which is really amazing. It’s all a really healthy change.”
With the reboot of Jumanji next on his slate—his entry into macro-budget, studio tent-pole filmmaking—Jonas realizes how rare his journey from what could have been a disposable stint as a teen idol into a formidable multihyphenate in the entertainment world truly is.
“I’ve been really fortunate to have what feels like a few shots at this, to be in a spot where it’s almost like I’ve gotten [a chance] to restart,” he says. “I was on a rocket ship to the moon with my brothers as part of a teen phenomenon. And to come back and solidify an adult career with real confidence in myself and pride in my work, I think I’ve now been able to see things a little bit differently. And that really does shape who you become as a person, the way you see the world… and the way you treat other human beings.”
Source: LA Confidential
Nick Jonas is one of those rare-breeds of child star who has managed to pull-off a total career 180. The 24-year-old has come a long way from his days as a middle-America tweenster pop star, and is rapidly blossoming into a widely-respected global musician. Just before he went on stage in San Jose for his 28th live show — he’s on tour with Demi Lovato, no less — Wonderland pinned him down to tell us about music, movies, and masculinity. Don’t get jealous.
W: Your most recent album — Last Year Was Complicated — feels like your most personal work to date. Would you agree?
N: I am way more connected to my music when it comes from a personal place, and so I wanted to find a way to present those stories and lay them out. I really want to see this music resonate with people. The great skill with an artist is to make this music and see it come alive live, too.
W: You put out a Tidal documentary earlier this year surrounding the release of LYWC. Tell me your thoughts about this project.
N: Having the opportunity to do that was just really exciting, and going with the theme of getting more open I spoke with the team about putting out a documentary series to complement the music and everything else. It’s helped me learn a lot about myself — looking back, and being able to watch over the recording and the roll out of the record.
W: Speaking of watching yourself back, you’ve dabbled with acting this year, too. You’re in Goat — your film with James Franco — coming out in September right? How was that whole process?
N: Pretty wild. First time I read the script, I was blown away. Anytime I read a script for the first time I put myself in it and think about how I would portray the character, and with that one I knew right away that I really had to play the role. I read for it, and worked really hard to get it and when they cast me I was just so thrilled. And to see the impact the movie had at Sundance and Berlin Film Festival and the conversation around it was just a really encouraging and exciting thing.
W: At the heart of the film is the taboo topic of fraternity hazing. Why do you think now is the time to be talking about this?
N: I think it’s a conversation that is important in this moment because there’s so many of these stories in recent years of young men pushing each other to a point where it’s all just so dangerous. And at the centre of the film, as far as themes go, is masculinity: and what that looks like at 16, and the pressures forced onto these young men, and the stakes that become so high. So being able to tell that story in a way that feels very grounded and very real, and starting a conversation, was important.
W: Speaking of masculinity, let’s talk about how your image has changed so drastically through the years. You’re an international sex symbol these days…
N: It was an interesting thing to go through. Part of it, I guess, is that it’s just my life now. It will have been 12 years of doing this all professionally. I think I have a balance of it: that I accept and understand that my circumstances and my life have been pretty unusual, to a certain degree. But also embracing it as my normal; I’ve gotta grow, make mistakes, in the way that everybody else does, only with a few more eyeballs on me. I don’t think like it’s been forced, and it feels like I’ve grown naturally.
W: How does it feel about having gone from chaste teen to being gay icon, too?
N: It’s bizarre! But sexuality is important, as an artist, to embrace and use it as ammunition in your creative life, and understanding that part of your life and how it makes you feel. Anytime I approach writing a song I think about that fact that since I started having sex, my creative life changed dramatically and my ability to write a song with more genuine depth, more reality.
W: As a male sex symbol you naturally appeal to the gay community, but there’s been accusations on various internet verticals that you’ve consciously “gay baited”. What do you say to that?
N: I’m totally aware of my intentions in any and all of my attempts to be an ally to the LGBT community: they are pure, and from my heart, and from my passion to be there for a community that’s been there for me from an early age. Starting in theatre and growing into the performer I am today, I’ve made so many great friends belonging to the LGBT community, and some of the most talented men and women in the community I’d like to pay my respects to.The positive impact is 10 times more important than the negative comments.
W: Do you think there could be more men doing what you’re doing, and showcasing the vulnerable?
N: I think vulnerability on any level, and having the confidence to dive into areas of your own life that are tough to speak about at times, is incredible. Specifically heartbreak and romance, and emotion. Look at Drake: a hip-hop artist who has done an excellent job of being human and being vulnerable, and is seeing it pay off.
W: Just before we finish, in your 12 years of show-business what is it you’re proudest of?
N: Recently I was back at the Whitehouse for our president’s birthday celebration, and it was great moment to be there eight years after the inauguration. Stevie Wonder was there, who thanked me for embracing soul into my music. Me and my brothers played with him back at the Grammys in 2009, and he said that he remembered how soulful I was then, and that he was glad I’d stuck with it. That was pretty cool.
Source: Wonderland Magazine
When Nick Jonas turned up at the Sundance Film Festival this year, the industry cognoscenti was perplexed. What, exactly, was the youngest Jonas brother doing so far from a stage and his legion of screaming fans? Was he hoping to score a free puffy jacket from a swag suite? Shredding some powder on the slopes? Hot tubbing with some snow bunnies?
“I kept getting asked, ‘Oh, what do you have going on?’ Why are you here, basically,” Jonas recalled.
He was there, of course, because he was in a movie: “Goat,” about two brothers whose relationship becomes strained as they rush a college fraternity. It’s a film that grapples with serious issues — hazing, binge drinking, masculinity — the kind of stuff that wasn’t exactly broached in Jonas’ last movie about a teen music camp that aired on the Disney Channel in 2010.
So he got it — the fact that he seemed an odd fit alongside the likes of Werner Herzog, Lena Dunham and Viggo Mortensen. He knew not everyone had heard of “Kingdom,” the DirecTV series about mixed martial arts fighters that he’s starred on for the last two years. That he’s still known as a pop star, and for good reason: This summer, he saw his new album debut behind only Drake on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart and embarked on a 43-city tour with Demi Lovato.
That concert tour concluded at the Forum in Inglewood on Saturday night. Jonas promptly flew to New York for a couple of days of press on “Goat.” And then Tuesday morning, immediately after he touched back down in L.A., he was driven to an empty sports bar on the fringes of West Hollywood that had opened early just for him. He walked in looking bleary-eyed, wearing a black hoodie with glittery palm trees on it. Someone on his team handed him a bottle of cold-brew coffee, a green juice and an egg scramble.
“Can we sit outside?” he asked, settling by a fire pit with flies circling it. He visited a bar like this before he started filming “Goat,” which debuted in 20 theaters and video-on-demand Friday. He was performing in Bowling Green, Ohio, and he asked the audience where he should head for a drink after the gig. When his fans suggested a prototypical college dive, the 24-year-old — who never attended college himself — decided to use the experience as research for his upcoming frat-bro role.
“It was a wild night,” he said. “Shots. Smirnoff Ice. You ever been Iced? It’s a game that you play where someone surprises you with a Smirnoff Ice and you have to chug it on one knee. It happened to me three times.”
Jonas said he wanted to understand “this whole world of drinking to get [messed] up, which is absolutely not the way” he drinks. He was living with his older brother, Joe, when he turned 21, and credits his sibling with helping him safely explore his alcohol limits. (His real vice is cigars, which he was first exposed to when he was 15 and on tour with the Jonas Brothers, because many of the crew members smoked.)
The Jonas Brothers went their separate ways in 2013, but his identity as a member of the boy band has trailed him ever since. When he first told his agent he was interested in pursuing acting, he kept getting pushback: “‘We don’t want a Jonas Brother’ is a lot of what I heard,” he said. “We were no longer the hottest thing, and the acting experience I had in [Disney Channel] movies didn’t really challenge me as an actor. There were a few times where someone would let me read for something, and I’d get down to the very end, and then they’d say, ‘You’re probably one of the best reads we’ve had, but the studio doesn’t feel like we can cast you.’”
James Franco, who produced “Goat,” didn’t share that bias. He’d worked with fellow Disney vets Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens on the edgy 2013 indie “Spring Breakers” and was impressed by their transformational performances.
“Those actresses were known for much more poppy things, and then they threw themselves into their roles and were really serious about them. So I had a hunch Nick would do the same thing,” explained Franco, who also has a cameo in the film as a fraternity veteran. “He already had a career, and if he wanted to do this acting thing, I felt like he was going to work harder than anyone. He doesn’t have to do this — he really wants to.”
Still, director Andrew Neel admitted, “he wasn’t someone you were putting at the top of acting lists at that point.”
“He was only known as a pop star,” the filmmaker said. “So initially, everyone was like, ‘Nick Jonas? What? Is this guy acting now?’ There’s a bias against him, like ‘Oh, he’s just a pop star,’ and in a lot of ways, I think that’s good. Because he was willing to come in and work hard. He wanted to earn it.”
And Jonas definitely isn’t playing around when it comes to his acting career. He’s worked with a coach, Rebecca Kitt, for a number of years, and sometimes she’ll come out on his tours with him to help him prepare for certain roles. He admires actors who have made big transitions in their careers — guys like Matthew McConaughey and Channing Tatum. He’s completely serious when he says that he’d someday like to achieve the famed EGOT — an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony award.
Once he even briefly considered discontinuing his social media accounts — he’s on Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter — because he worried they were hurting his chances to land big parts.
“I think about that — if I didn’t have Twitter or Instagram, would I have more roles that I want coming to me?” said Jonas, who has 10.9 million followers on Twitter alone. It’s a sentiment shared by some of the most serious actors of his generation — Jennifer Lawrence, Emma Stone, Daniel Radcliffe — even as studio heads have increasingly begun to gauge box-office potential via a star’s online following.
But Jonas has lived his life in public since his Disney Channel days, where he first learned what it was like to be on a movie set. On the “Camp Rock” films, the most important directives were to be enthusiastic and to hit your mark. There wasn’t a whole lot of soul-searching.
“I didn’t necessarily love the material,” Jonas acknowledged. “But I don’t want to knock that experience. I’m not one of these Disney haters. I’m really appreciative of the foundation it laid for me.”
Things were far different on the low-budget “Goat,” where he spent a lot of time thinking about what it meant to be a man. In the film, he plays Brett, whose younger brother Brad (newcomer Ben Schnetzer) is rushing a fraternity he’s already a member of. As he watches Brad get brutally hazed by his frat bros — he has to chug endless liquor, grab a banana out of a toilet while blindfolded and physically fight the other pledges — Brett starts to question his loyalty to the organization.
Growing up, Jonas’ father, Kevin Jonas Sr., shaped Nick’s view of masculinity. The family patriarch was a minister and a musician, but he also loved football — “he just kind of let us be who we were without judgment,” said the younger Jonas, who had a similar mix of interests. As a kid, Nick started acting in plays, but he still played sports, even harboring a dream to walk on to the baseball team at Northwestern University. (He visited the campus in 2009, but “it didn’t work out,” Jonas said of how fame affected that decision. “It would not have been as easy as showing up and going to class.”)
Sometimes he wonders what college would have been like, but Jonas said he doesn’t regret sticking to performing. He’s having the most fun he ever has on stage. And he’s slowly gaining acceptance in the acting community too. A few months after the premiere of “Goat,” he got a call about auditioning for Sony Pictures’ remake of “Jumanji” starringDwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart.
“They were like, ‘Are you OK to read?’” said Jonas, who left Thursday to join the cast for the film’s three-month shoot in Hawaii. “And I was like, ‘Of course I’m OK to read!’ I was so used to people saying they didn’t even want to give me a chance to read at all.”
Source: Los Angeles Times
NTERNATIONAL POPSTARS DNCE AND NICOLE SCHERZINGER AMONGST PERFORMERS TO TAKE TO THE SSE ARENA, WEMBLEY STAGE FOR RAYS OF SUNSHINE CHILDREN’S CHARITY ON MONDAY 24TH OCTOBER 2016
Also performing will be Fleur East, X Factor reigning winner Louisa Johnson and rock pop band Lawson. The evening will also see a very special performance from Nicole Scherzinger singing a unique song with the Rays of Sunshine Children’s Choir, a group of brave and inspiring seriously ill children. Other acts are to be announced.
The event will be hosted by Rays of Sunshine Children’s Charity www.raysofsunshine.org.uk which grants wishes to seriously ill children across the UK.
The concert is sponsored by SSE as part of a new two-year partnership between SSE and Rays of Sunshine that will see the charity event take place at The SSE Arena Wembley in 2016 and 2017. SSE’s support of the event will enable the charity to offer 2,000 complimentary tickets to seriously ill children, who have previously had wishes granted.
Tickets go on general sale from 9am on Monday 12th September 2016. Tickets from £25 plus booking fees. SSE Reward customers can purchase tickets for this show in the exclusive pre-sale from Friday 9thSeptember, in advance of general release via www.ssereward.com. You must get your gas, electricity, phone, broadband or boiler breakdown cover from SSE to become a member.
Nicole, who will be performing with the Rays of Sunshine Choir, was inspired to be a part of the event after meeting eight-year-old wish child Ella, from Lancashire, who is currently living with Renal Failure. Ella, who had her wish granted to sing ‘Don’t Stop Believin’ to Simon Cowell by the charity, will be taking to the stage alongside 15 other brave and inspiring seriously ill children.
Nicole Scherzinger commented:
“I am super excited to perform at the Rays of Sunshine Concert at The SSE Arena, Wembley in October. Seeing Ella’s beautiful smile again brightened up my day and it was an absolute pleasure to meet Murad and Joel too, they’re all such brave and inspiring children.
“I can’t wait to take to the stage and help Rays of Sunshine brighten the lives of many more brave and deserving children. This concert is such a unique event, with over a thousand seriously ill children in the audience, that it’s an absolute honour to be a part of it. It’s going to be a fantastic show.”
Jane Sharpe, CEO of Rays of Sunshine Children’s Charity, added:
“The concert is going to be a magical event which will enable us to provide a night of distraction and entertainment to thousands of brave and deserving children. We are so grateful to SSE, The SSE Arena, Wembley and all our amazing performers for making this incredible night possible.”
Colin Banks, Head of Sponsorship at SSE, said:
“At SSE we are committed to making a difference and are extremely proud to be supporting Rays of Sunshine and to be giving thousands of children the opportunity to come and see some of their musical heroes at The SSE Arena, Wembley for the very first time.
“The work that Rays of Sunshine do in brightening up the lives of seriously ill children across the UK is just fantastic and we are honoured to be able play our part by giving these incredibly brave kids, a fantastic day out at what promises to be an incredible show”.
SSE has been the title sponsor of The SSE Arena, Wembley since June 2014. The utility company is also title sponsor of The SSE Hydro (Glasgow), The SSE Arena, Belfast and The SSE Swalec, Wales.
SSE customers get access to a number of entertainment benefits through SSE REWARD including advance ticket access, upgrades to SSE lounges and unique money can’t buy opportunities.
For more details visit www.ssereward.com. For more information about Rays of Sunshine or to apply for a wish visit www.raysofsunshine.org.uk.
You may have heard their catchy single, Cake by the Ocean, that is still dominating the UK charts at its 31st week in the top 40 – but DNCE are proving that they are more than just a one hit wonder.
Joe Jonas, one third of the teen pop band The Jonas Brothers, has separated with Disney once and for all as he joins with Jinjoo, Jack and Cole to create DNCE – and yes, that ‘A’ was left out on purpose. The band mates collectively each have over a decade of experience in the music industry, having toured with the likes of CeeLo Green, Charli XCX, Jordin Sparks, Semi Precious Weapons and of course The Jonas Brothers, they are no new comers to the stage.
MTV’s 2016 Best New Artist winners are currently travelling the world touring since Cake by the Ocean made its way into the charts, so we met with DNCE ahead of their sold out show at the Islington O2 in London to get to know the one year old band a little better.
You guys have just come from New Zealand, how was that?
Joe: It was great, we were in Japan, Australia, New Zealand, and then the longest thirty hours to get here. We kind of hit the ground running which is probably the best way to fight the jet lag. We got here yesterday about six to the hotel, and we started at like eight or nine o’clock, so we had to keep things moving but its been a good 48 hours.
How long are you in London for?
Joe: We’re here for another fours days before we head to New York.
So it’s been about a year since you guys started, how did you get together?
Joe: Well, I’ve known Jack and Jinjoo for almost ten years and Jack I were living together and talked about starting a band; we threw around a bunch of different band names for a while. Eventually it started getting serious when I called up Jack and was like dude this is a reality, this idea that we had. Jinjoo was touring with some friends that we knew, Charli XCX and Ciara so she got off tour with them and then we met Cole through a mutual friend and had the perfect connection.
Obviously having that chemistry is important, when did you guys know that this was going to work?
Cole: The first time that we actually played together, all four of us with all our instruments, I think that movement is a huge thing; some people don’t move well together and some people move the same way. We just started moving around together when we were playing music and were just weaving in and out of each other like it was water or something, and we just all knew it was something really special.
So Cake by the Ocean is currently at its 31th week in the UK charts, how did you come about writing this?
Joe: That’s cool I didn’t know that. It was kind of an accident, a happy accident in a way. We were working in the studio, kind of having writers block with producers that came from Sweden and on a break they were telling a story about having Cake by the Ocean which was Sex on the Beach, the drink, so we were like that could be a funny idea for a song. So we started joking around, writing this fun tune and ending up creating Cake by the Ocean.
So your new single Toothbrush is out with the model Ashley Graham in the video, what’s that song about?
Cole: That song is about the beginning of a relationship when your hanging out with someone new and it’s a good vibe and it gets to that point when you start to think about maybe leaving something at somebody’s place, just to test the water. I think it could be five minutes into someone’s relationship or a couple of weeks, but it’s that cool moment where it might be something real.
How did you come up with the name, DNCE?
Jo: Another happy accident, (they all giggle) we were trying to come up with endings for a while and each one was either taken or we’d sleep on it and think that isn’t the right band name. So a late night, one eye open trying to text each other to get some ideas, and someone miss-spelt dance and ‘dnce’ was written. We liked the way it sat out, its not perfect, it kind of reminds people of moving and that’s what we want people to do with our music.
So Jo, have you found a lot of your fans have moved with you from the Jonas Brothers to DNCE?
Jo: I’ve definitely seen familiar faces. Although one thing we’ve learned a lot from DNCE is that our music lived before the visuals, so I think we were figuring out who we were before they saw a music video attached to anything. So it was really cool to hear stories about how people found our music. The song, Cake by the Ocean for example was being streamed by Spotify and Apple Music for months before the video came out, so it was kind of special how we got to watch a fan base grow organically.
Yes because you were playing secret shows in New York for a while?
Jo: Yes we did, we were playing a week worth of shows in an underground bar. Its really special to us, we still try and go back to that bar just to reminisce. I think we are going to do another run of shows there hopefully, just to go back to the roots of things.
You’ve all come from experienced musical backgrounds. Jinjoo, you are from Korea and started playing guitar, tell us about that?
Jinjoo: I grew up playing with my siblings and having albums in Korea, so I am used to being in a band. When I was 19 my Mum had the idea for me to go to America alone. At time I wasn’t ready, I was afraid as I couldn’t speak English and I was very comfortable making music with my family back home. But I found some courage and faith and decided to make the trip to a music school in Hollywood. About a year later I did an audition for Jordin Sparks and got the gig. Everything happened accidentally.
Jack, I hear you were in college when you first started playing for The Jonas Brothers.
Jack: Yeah, I was two months into college and I got a call from a friend who were with these guys who said (interpreting a low male American voice) ‘you gotta play with these they’re ganna be huge next year.’ I was like sweet. I met Jo the day before our first gig and we just took off on the road and had no idea what I was getting myself into, it was crazy.
Cole, were you classically trained in piano?
Cole: Yeah I was. I started playing when I was six and my piano teacher lived across the alley from me and she was really cute so I think that’s why I wanted to go every week. As soon as I realized that you got to hang out with chicks if you were in a band I was like ok. I forgot everything I knew about piano and started playing base.
So you’re currently touring, where are you going next and how’s it all going?
Joe: We are going to New York, were up for a music video award for MTV, so we’re going to fingers crossed take something home. Then were doing a couple of TV shows and just announced were doing a couple of shows with Selena Gomez here in the UK, which will be rad. We are planning the rest of the year right now; we have the album coming out for November so that will keep us really busy. We want to continue to tour, that’s where we feel the most confidant. We enjoyed the last six, seven months its been so nice to just stay on the road so hopefully we’ll get a big tour going next year and just sleep on that bus.
So is touring your favorite part to the whole musical process?
Joe: Yeah defiantly.
Cole: The reason why we are alive is to play music to as many people as possible. It’s like a drug for us. Even when we are writing that’s the vision for us, to be playing and to feel the energy.
So you’re performing tonight at the O2 in Islington, what can we expect?
Joe: Well its going to be pretty awesome to be able to play a show here, the last time we played was in a small little bar to kind of just announce the band over here. Now we put this show on sale and it sold out really quickly and so these are heard core fans that are coming out tonight and supporting. We’ve been reading tweets from all over the place to come to the show tonight.
Yes there’s already a queue way down the road outside we saw when we came in!
Jo: Yeah we’re really excited and were playing new songs off the record and a few covers, and making a few special adjustments for this show in particular and we just hope that were leaving with some memories.
Describe the band in one word
If all the records in the world were destroyed, and you could only save one, what would it be?
Jinjoo: Cake by the Ocean (giggles).
Cole: I’d do Matthew McConaughey’s Spoken Word and read by Mathew McConanughy. I don’t know if that exists, but hopefully by then.
Joe:I really like The Matthew McConaughey one… Jack, I need to think about mine.
Jack: Trying to think real answer or silly answer. I’ll go real answer, The White Album by The Beatles.
Joe: I am just going to bring an extra pair of headphones because they all said great answers, I wanna see what they got.
Eight years ago, few might have predicted that the fresh-faced stars of the hit Disney Channel musical Camp Rock would go on to freely discuss sex in their work, become outspoken proponents for the LGBT community and, this year, mount a joint tour inspired by Bruce Springsteen.
But the Boss is just who Nick Jonas said he and Demi Lovato had in mind when they conceived their relatively stripped-down road show, Future Now, which launched in June.
Specifically, Jonas explained, it was Springsteen’s run of concerts last spring at the Los Angeles Sports Arena – along with a Billy Joel gig he caught at New York’s Madison Square Garden – that made this former tween idol want to turn away from the pop pageantry with which he’d made his name as part of the Jonas Brothers.
“I left that Springsteen show and was like, ‘We’ve got to think like this’,” he said, sprawled on a couch next to Lovato in a dressing room before a show in Boston, Massachussetts.
“Just to go onstage, no theatrics, and pour your heart and soul into the music – that’s what we wanted,” Lovato added as her small black dog scampered around her legs. In truth, the Future Now tour isn’t exactly a no-frills jam-a-thon.
In Boston, the two performers, both 23, were accompanied by sleek visuals and wore outfits considerably more involved than Springsteen’s faded dad jeans.
And the songs, of course, were flashy in their own way: Stomping electro-pop tunes like Lovato’s Confident and moist R&B come-ons like Jonas’ Chains.
But if it’s true, as Jonas said in a freewheeling conversation, that the pop world “is pretty oversaturated these days” – packed with high-tech arena spectacles from Beyonce, Justin Bieber and Madonna – then this production, with its emphasis on live vocals backed by a muscular band, does feel like a different animal. These are excerpts from our talk.
How often do you think about Camp Rock?
Lovato: I don’t, to be honest, unless somebody brings it up.
So what’s coming to mind now?
Jonas: Schooling. We were both 14 or 15 when we filmed the movie, so they had a teacher on set, and you had to do a certain amount of school each day: four hours of school, six hours of work. By the second (Camp Rock movie), Demi and I had both tested out of high school in California, so we were riding high, enjoying life.
Does a kid in show business learn anything from an on-set tutor?
Jonas: From some of them, no. But there was this girl Laura, who actually really helped me prep for the test, because I was not prepared.
Lovato: Mine was Marsha. But other than that? Some were literally just like, “I can’t help you with anything – let’s watch a movie and say you did some studying.
Talk about moving out of the kiddie phase of your career. Is it a transition you have to manage carefully?
Lovato: I kind of cheated – I went to rehab.
Lovato: A real FastPass.
Jonas: I think we had two very different journeys. I was in my transition from adolescence to adulthood while also trying to manage being a family and having our business kind of fall apart.
So, I made a conscious effort to push myself and collaborate with different people. The word “intentional” is dangerous, but it was about intentionally doing certain photo shoots and things that would give people a better idea of who I am today as opposed to their first introduction when I was 14.
Quest for freedom
As individualised as their journeys have been, one thing that’s united the two singers is the way they’ve handled sex in their work – which is to say, the enthusiasm with which they’ve handled it.
A certain amount of lustiness is crucial for any former kiddie star looking to leave the past behind; it’s part of the script followed by Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Miley Cyrus and plenty of others.
Still, Jonas and Lovato have gone further than most, in songs like his comically lewd Bacon and in revealing photo shoots like the one Lovato did last year for Vanity Fair that had her naked in a hotel bathtub.
Yet it’s not mere titillation or shock value that they appear interested in but something deeper, something almost philosophical about the nature of desire – and of being desired.
Is it part of this overall quest for freedom?
Lovato: It’s definitely liberating. I mean, for someone who’s had body image issues to be able to go onstage in a thong – it’s not just me trying to be sexy. It’s “Look how far I’ve come – I can now show off my whole body and be confident.”
Jonas: As a songwriter, the minute you start having sex, you can totally see the difference in the writing. You become an adult – that’s kind of the whole backbone of it, really, your identity as a person and what sex means to you.
Because you both approach sex candidly, you know the experience of being ogled. The idea of your body becomes public property in a way.
Lovato: I look at it as I’m sharing my experience with my body with my fans, and that’s why they relate to me so much.
Does that encourage people to expect certain details and images from you?
Lovato: There’s an expectation today because of the access to celebrity that this generation has. When I was dreaming about becoming an artiste, there weren’t camera phones; now people get offended if you say no to a picture. The reaction people have when a celebrity enters a room, it blows my mind.
Do you think about the effect a specific act might have? “If I post X on Instagram, then Y will happen.”
Jonas: Of course. When I was younger, that used to really shake me. I was kind of living in fear.
Fear of what?
Jonas: Disappointing people. I didn’t ask to become a role model, but it was thrust upon all of us, regardless of whether you acknowledge it. You have to come to a decision as an adult and say, “I’ve got to live my life.”
There’s nothing wrong with thinking ahead and being aware of how it might affect somebody – everything from a post to where you have dinner to who you’re with. But these aren’t things you can let consume your life.
Joe Jonas’ DNCE has been topping the UK charts for 3 weeks straight, with their overly catchy tune Cake By The Ocean. After giving it a try solo, Jonas ultimately decided that he’s more comfortable in a group rather than on his own. And he couldn’t have made a better call. With Cake By The Ocean blasting from every corner you could possibly imagine, the band are currently touring Europe and are expected to release an album late in the summer. It’s safe to say that Joe has broken the Jonas Brothers mold, much like his younger sibling Nick who was FAULT 21’s cover star. In FAULT Issue 24’s Music Cover shoot, we catch up with Joe here’s his take on life outside of The Jonas Brothers, personal tracks and growing up in the public eye.
When you first got the band together, what was your initial aim? Where did you want it to go?
Originally, it was just about creating the music. At first, we had a bit of a writer’s block and we couldn’t quite figure out the vibe that we wanted. And finally, we worked with new producers from Sweden and kind of just broke the mold. It all happened very quickly and we’re really thrilled with the reaction and how things have happened so far.
How important do you think chemistry is within a band and do you think you have it?
Chemistry is very important. You’re sharing every moment with that person and you want to be able to feel comfortable with them, wherever you go. Sometimes you’re traveling internationally, you’re sharing a tour bus. Not to mention the overall vibe about performing on stage. You want to feel comfortable. I’m very lucky to say we get along.
You must have a lot of unreleased tracks under your belt that you can’t wait to put out. Do you have one in particular that you’re eager to release?
I’d say that Cake By The Ocean has been one of my favourites. There’s also a song called Almost that I wrote with our producer, Nolan, and a few other writers in LA. Almost is a personal song and I feel like it’s really fun to share those with the world. When you can really pull from personal experience and find a way to showcase it in a relatable way, it’s always a rewarding feeling. If you’re going through stuff and have any sort of creative outlet, you might as well put it into good use.
You’ve also had a solo project beforehand. Pros and Cons to working solo as opposed to working in a group?
There are a lot of similarities. There are obviously things that you do when you’re traveling and touring with your brothers that are nice, because you’ve got your family with you at all times. And then, there’s also the element of playing with friends. It’s a fun vibe. But I do prefer playing in a group. There’s something special about our band.
Do you have to deal with Jonas Brothers comparisons anymore?
There are sometimes some comparisons here and there, but I don’t mind. We’re also really supportive of each other’s individual careers, so it makes it all a lot easier.
Since you’ve been in the public eye your entire life, what’s your personal take on fame?
I think fame is something that kind of comes with what you do. Some people handle it differently. I grew up around it, so it hasn’t always been an easy thing for me, but you learn to adjust and adapt to how you’re comfortable. Ultimately, there are things that you’re gonna be cool with and things that are gonna be tough to get over. But at the end of the day, if you remember where you come from and how it can all go away so easily, it makes it a little bit easier to handle.
What’s your FAULT?
I can be clumsy on stage. There are definitely a few shows where I’ve fallen off. There are a couple of Youtube videos to be watched.
Joe Jonas is a tall drink of water on the August issue of #legend magazine. The pop idol and DNCE frontman dishes on touring with Selena Gomez, his band’s funky new sound and the depth of the Jonas bromance. Full link to article here
Joe on his idea of fun: “I like cigars, it’s my one vice. They get me to a good place.”
On his relationship with Selena Gomez: “We rarely get to spend much time together, but I’ve known her since she was really young, and we kind of watched each other grow up.”
On competing for girlfriends with brother Nick Jonas: “We’re pretty supportive of each other. There might be a rare occasion where we’ve got to make sure,
“Hey, you haven’t dated this person, have you?”
To complement Joe’s scorching 12-page feature, the latest issue of #legend also profiles a dizzying array of fascinating personalities including Italian footwear brand Hogan’s Andrea Della Valle, Sow Asia’s Darius Yuen and the ever-formidable and fashionable David Beckham.
The magazine also helps readers escape to lush Marrakesh souks and a mountainous Umbrian getaway. The newly-engaged can also get their wedding fix with #legend’s inaugural wedding special – brimming with top tips and ideas on how to prepare for the big day.
On cover photo: Joe Jonas wears outfit by Hogan
Photography / Eric Michael Roy
Creative Direction and Styling / Paris Libby
Grooming / Marissa Machado at Art Department, using Kevin Murphy
Styling Assistant / Allison Sherman
Photography Assistants / Gal Harpaz, Danny Calderón, Christian Raices and David Madison
Location / Beverly Hills, California
Source: #Legend Magazine
EXCLUSIVE: Nick Jonas is in talks to join Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart and Jack Black in the Jake Kasdan-directed reimagining of Jumanji that Sony Pictures has set for a July 28, 2017 release. Matt Tolmach is producing. While Jonas is best known for his singing voice as a solo artist who started as one of the Jonas Brothers, he showed real chops in the frat hazing drama Goat, which premiered at Sundance in January and which Paramount releases September 23. He also stars in the MMA series Kingdom. Busy with music commitments, closing Jonas’ deal is predicated on scheduling. But a studio franchise seems a smart next step in a career worth watching.
Kasdan will direct a script by Scott Rosenberg and Jeff Pinkner, latter of whom last worked for the studio on The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Their script is based on draft by original writers, Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers, and the whole thing is based on the Caldecott Medal-winning adventure book by Chris Van Allsburg. William Teitler is also producing and the exec producers are Kasdan, Van Allsburg, Johnson, David Householter, Ted Field, Mike Weber and Dany Garcia. Shooting starts next month in Honolulu.
The original Jumanji starred Robin Williams and was released in 1995. The film grossed more than $260 million globally. The second installment, Zathura, flopped, but Sony has been trying for a while for a foothold to relaunch the fantastical world depicted in Van Allsburg’s book. That effort goes back to when Tolmach was production president at the studio.
Tolmach is separately producing Rock That Body, starring Scarlett Johansson, Jillian Bell and Kate McKinnon.
When we call Joe Jonas to talk to him about his incredibly hardworking little brother Nick, the DNCE star happens to be in Cabo San Lucas. “We just got off the road, but I’m on vacation,” he says. “Our guitar player is getting her tonsils out, so it forced us to get some down time.” But you get the feeling no one was twisting his arm about Mexico. The boy-band survivor is doing just fine, and now that his band’s “Cake by the Ocean” video has surpassed Nick’s “Close” video by a margin of nearly 40 million views, we figure he’s ready to share some insight on his younger sibling’s success — especially in light of Nick’s Future Now tour with their longtime friend Demi Lovato, whom Joe began dating while they were all on the set of Camp Rock together nearly a decade ago. The romance fizzled, but, as Jonas sees it, an incredible camaraderie remains.
You’ve known Nick all of his life and Demi for most of yours. Are you surprised that these two kids from Camp Rock are doing this huge tour together now?
It’s surprising just in the world we live in — it’s tough to stay friends with people who are in the industry over this much time. But they are two of the closest. They’ve seen each other go through so much, personally and in their careers. It’s cool to see this bond now that they’re adults. I think it’s nice for an audience as well — they get to watch Nick and Demi grow up, not only together, but also musically.
You’re closer to them than most. How would you describe their friendship?
You’d think they’re siblings, sometimes more than Nick and I. They pick on each other, they play games… Demi’s a great listener, and she keeps Nick smiling — she’ll always make a serious situation laughable. So, they’ve found great support with one another and they lean on each other creatively. Nick’s evolved so much as a writer. Demi’s voice is stronger than ever. It’s difficult to take a backseat and say, “Let’s work together and figure out something great.” I commend them both for that.
Demi talks about writing “Gonna Get Caught” when you two were dating. Was it weird to know your brother was helping her write songs about you?
I was oblivious to that until I was asked to step out of a songwriting session or two, then it started to be a little clearer what this was about. [Laughs] We’ve seen each other go through tough times, good times, in and out of relationships. It’s funny to think back on that now. It feels like we were children, although I guess we were. She is like a sister to both of us, and it’s great to know we all have that support. It’s like, it doesn’t matter what comes our way. We’re going to be able to make it through.
Nick’s had a really great couple of years. Are you proud of your little bro?
I’m so proud of him, man. I’ll be honest, I was a bit envious when I saw him catapult into this personal success. I was hungry for it, but it’s something you can’t rush and Nick’s always creative — his favorite hang time is in the studio. We’ll be on vacation and he’ll be writing songs. He doesn’t turn that switch off. We used to laugh about it, because way back when we had crazy 24-hour [Jonas Brothers] days, we’d be like, “We’ll get through this,” but he enjoyed it. He’s stronger in ways than I am. The dude will do a tour, then go shoot a movie. I’m like, “Okay, now where’s vacation?”
You’ve seen Demi go through it. What can you say about who she is today?
She’s the best version of herself I’ve ever known. She’s healthy and that’s obviously something a lot of the world knows now, but she’s gotten over [the really hard part].
I know a lot of friends who’ve gone through similar things and it’s when you have to live with your new self for a few years — that comes with a lot of struggle. And being a pop star on top of that, that’s a lot of pressure, but she’s amazing at speaking truth to what she believes. I wish I could have a bit more of that. Excuse my language, but she doesn’t give a f—. She goes out there and says, “This is who I am.” Considering what we’ve all come from, it’s not always easy. We feel like we have to be cautious.
You’ve said a lot of nice things. What about Nick drives you crazy?
[Laughs] Oh man. One thing about my brother that drives me crazy is he’s very competitive. I love golf, but I had to take a break from playing with him because it would get to be too much. Then I play with friends and they’re just messing around, drinking beers, and I’m like, “Okay, I’m not crazy.” So, sometimes he doesn’t know how to [chill], but now that I don’t get to see him as often, I don’t mind it as much.
You’ve described Demi as like a sister. Sisters can drive you crazy too…
Oh yeah. It’s so funny. Demi will overhear me and Nick talking and she’ll be like, [demandingly] “What are you talking about?!” So she likes the gossip. She likes hearing about my girl drama. I’m always like, “I wasn’t talking to you, Demi.”
Nick said she had some choice advice for him: get out and sleep around.
[Laughs] That sounds about right.
Do you have a story that exemplifies the chemistry between you three?
We were talking about this today actually. We used to do these satellite media tours, where we’d be staring into a camera, talking to local news outlets around the states or the world. Right before we were going on tour together for Camp Rock, we were doing so many of these that we started making a game out of it. Like, “If you can say ‘Jerry Springer’ and sing the theme song to Friends, you win.” We got so good at it, and then so sloppy, that by the last interviews we were saying whatever came to our minds. At one point I remember somebody saying, “I think they’re drunk” after we got off the call because it didn’t make any sense. They’d ask a question, and all of a sudden someone’s talking about squirrels. Those are the moments we treasure.
Though it’s only a little after 9 a.m., Demi Lovato and Nick Jonas are already bickering. They’re seated on the terrace at the ritzy Wynn brunchery Tableau on a hot Las Vegas summer morning, and Lovato has asked Jonas to tack fries onto his meal so she can “have one and not feel bad about myself.” When the server arrives, Jonas requests an off-menu egg white omelet — then casually adds, “You know what? These fries look so good, I might just get them.” But Lovato has already changed her mind. “No, no. He’s not going to get the fries. I’m watching what he eats. You’re welcome, honey.” She rests a patronizing hand on his shoulder. Jonas shakes his head. “You threw me right under the bus.”
Jonas and Lovato, both 23, were Disney Channel charges who started working before they were tweens and have been singing and acting ever since. Each has been, in his and her own way, through the ringer. Jonas’ experience with pubescent pop-rockers the Jonas Brothers left him “bruised and a little jaded,” says his and Lovato’s manager, Phil McIntyre. And Lovato just marked four years of sobriety after a hard-fought battle with mental illness and addiction. But both are now midstride into a second act that, like the first, they’re experiencing together — but this time on their own terms. (And no, they are not, nor have they ever been, romantically entangled.)
In May 2015, Lovato and Jonas partnered with McIntyre to launch Safehouse Records with help from Island. Their first release: Lovato’s fifth album, Confident, which hit No. 2 on the Billboard 200, launched the coy I-kissed-a-girl anthem “Cool for the Summer” and led to grown-woman fare like her new song, “Body Say.” The latest release, from June: Jonas’ second post-boy-band LP, Last Year Was Complicated, which also notched a No. 2 peak, led by the surging R&B of “Close.” On June 29, the pair — her an established celebrity aiming to stay fresh, him striving to prove men can be pop megastars too — kicked off a 44-city co-headlining arena tour, Future Now, a “seamless night of music,” says Jonas, where they take turns in the spotlight and sometimes back each other up.
It’s not their first time together on the road. Lovato recalls getting mad at her straight-laced pal while playing their favorite card game on tour in 2008 and 2009: “He’d only say ‘BS.’ I’d be like, ‘Bullshit?! Is that what you mean?'” She also teases Jonas’ “little ‘fro” on the poster for Disney’s Camp Rock, the filming of which solidified their best-friend status almost a decade ago. Today, Lovato, who lives in North Hollywood, is outspoken on social media, candidly discussing her past struggles but also beefing with Taylor Swift over feminist bona fides and incurring the wrath of Mariah Carey‘s lambs by riding for Ariana Grande. Meanwhile, Jonas, who lives in Sherman Oaks, Calif., explores the complexities of modern masculinity, both as a glammy top 40 singer and an actor. He plays a gay MMA fighter in the cable drama Kingdom and an aggro fraternity brother in 2016 Sundance success Goat, alongside James Franco.
These days the two enjoy cigars and espresso shots, nerd out over conspiracy theories, watch dumb comedies (but don’t really read: “No books,” says Jonas) and call each other with any personal crisis. Lovato demurs on the subject of her breakup with Wilmer Valderrama, until June her boyfriend of six years, but says Jonas has been there for her and that they’ve been making music together on the bus. “I work with him on being more vulnerable,” says Lovato. “He’s doing an awesome job.” Replies Jonas: “Thanks.”
Demi, you left the 2010 Jonas tour early after an infamous incident in which you punched your dancer. Had you opened up to Nick about your struggles?
LOVATO I distanced myself as I was getting involved with self-destructive things. After treatment, I had to have some time sober before I wasn’t embarrassed to talk to him. Nick says I sent text messages, but I don’t remember shit. The first time we saw each other since that tour was my [2012 Los Angeles] concert at The Greek. We caught up right before the show, then performed. It was an emotional reunion — I got one of my best friends back.
Nick, what did you think when that happened?
JONAS That we were going to get sued. I mean, it was bad. On top of losing a friend, we have seven dates left, it’s a big production, people are expecting to see Demi and that’s not going to happen. I was angry, because a week before I pleaded with her to confide in me. We talked on the plane for two hours.
LOVATO Really? To be totally honest, I don’t remember that. It’s unfortunate I had to go through that stuff in order to appreciate what I have in front of me.
Now Nick drinks and you don’t.
JONAS She gave me the right to have a drink around her, but I’m never, ever drunk around Demi.
LOVATO Although I want to see him drunk.
JONAS (Firmly.) No, you don’t.
How do you help one another if you’re having a bad day on tour?
JONAS My first instinct is to be like, let’s get out of the shit, let’s pull ourselves out of the rough. Demi can sit there a little longer.
LOVATO Women are more emotional and sometimes I just want to be heard. So to have him listen is very helpful.
JONAS I’m in a bizarre time in my life where I’m single, but that has been tricky. And she likes drama, so I’m able to talk about my dating shit without feeling bad.
LOVATO I’m like, “Soooo, what’s the gossip? Who is it? Tell me everything!”
Nick, what do you mean by “tricky”?
LOVATO (Interrupting.) He’s a guy in his 20s and he’s famous and he likes to have a lot of fun. Listen, even when he was in a relationship, I was like, “Get out of that. You could f– anybody that you want right now, so have fun and do that.”
JONAS The tricky thing is, from what I’ve heard, I’m a bit emotionally unavailable.
LOVATO (Sighs.) I give him a lot of advice. He doesn’t always take it.
Nick, your breakup with model-actress Olivia Culpo is a big part of your new album’s narrative…
JONAS It is. I’m in such agony. I’m dying inside! (Laughs.)
When that happened, did you call Demi?
JONAS I internalize things, so we have this rule that we never want to hear about it in a tweet or something. She’d read me the riot act, so she’s the third person I call — my dad, Joe, then Demi. She was like, “Just go, create and be free.” She also said some other things…
LOVATO (Laughs.) I go, “Honestly, I didn’t like her anyway.” It’s not because she’s mean or anything, but he has such a great sense of humor and I want him to be with someone that makes him laugh. I can tell if something’s up because he’ll close off.
Demi, you’re single now. Is it too soon to think about dating?
LOVATO It’s not on my mind, but I welcome anything. I’ll have fun. But a relationship … I won’t want that for a long time.
Tell me about your friendship early on, when you were filming Camp Rock.
JONAS Well, for a couple of years there was the Joe and Demi romantic thing, so I’d be this emotional bridge for them. But she and I were productive — we’d write songs about it. We became even closer because it was never going to be [romantic].
LOVATO There’s a song on my first album called “Gonna Get Caught” about how I thought Joe was a player. I remember we were on the bus writing the bridge, and Joe is like, “I think it should have a happy ending.” I’m like, “No, I don’t think it should.” And poor Nick is sitting there like, “What are we actually deciding here?”
Did you know how odd your lives were?
LOVATO We joked around that it was Disney High, except we all were shooting shows and really overworking. I joke that I sometimes have PTSD after leaving the channel, because if my schedule starts to get too busy, I rebel and I get bitchy…
JONAS (Mockingly.) No!
LOVATO F– off. (Laughs.)
Did you feel pushed by adults in your life?
LOVATO Not by my family, but when you’re on set, you work like an adult. I always wanted to be the next Shirley Temple, to be the youngest person to ever win a Grammy and an Oscar. It didn’t turn out that way. I don’t regret it, but I probably won’t allow my kids to get into the industry unless it’s on their terms.
JONAS I have really musical parents, and my dad was always encouraging, but the desire to get onstage and perform really did come from me. I’d never push my future children.
Let’s talk politics. You’re both yuuuuge Trump supporters, right?
JONAS (Laughs.) I keep my political views to myself. We both come from conservative households with a religious backbone, but we’ve both evolved quite a bit in the way we see the world. (To Lovato.) Um, don’t you want to tell us about Hillary Clinton?
LOVATO When I went through my shit, I realized it was for a reason — to make a difference. I can share my story a million times, but it’s not as tangible as going to Capitol Hill. Hillary is in support of mental health care and, yeah, I’m a Democrat.
You’ve had your share of Twitter drama, but Nick seems to live drama-free. Any advice for your friend, Nick?
LOVATO Keep my mouth shut?
You recently stood up for Ariana Grande at Mariah Carey‘s expense. Did you hear from Mariah or her people?
LOVATO No. (Laughs.) I’m sure she’s sitting on diamond records not giving a f– what I have to say. That’s fine. I don’t even give a f– what I have to say. That’s why I just say it.
You’re visible LGBTQ allies, but some have suggested you’re stringing the community along for a fan base. Is that unfair?
JONAS Of course. Think about my past and where my love for performance comes from — musical theater. And playing this gay fighter in a very macho world for Kingdom, it requires me digging really deep, and I do it with respect and honor.
LOVATO For me, it’s a little personal. It’s obvious what my [“Cool for the Summer”] lyrics are about. Just because I never said anything bluntly [about experiences with women] doesn’t mean I’m exploiting it.
Nick, you spoke at the Stonewall vigil after the Orlando tragedy and got backlash.
JONAS I wouldn’t change a thing. That’s a moment — and in general the time we’re in in this country — where unity, support and raising our hand and saying we can make change is what’s important, so it’s a shame when people make it about something else.
Nick, you go to college in Goat, but neither of you did in real life. If you went now, would you be dorm mates?
LOVATO That would be weird. I don’t want to see him f– other people.
JONAS No, after Goat, I’d make it my mission to have an apartment off campus.
LOVATO I wanted to get my own apartment when I was 5 and my mom said no.
JONAS I wonder why.
LOVATO Even then I wanted my own place, so I don’t think a dorm would be good for me to share with anybody.
A version of this article originally appeared in the July 30 issue of Billboard.
The day is bright and balmy, and the bustling crowd at Sweet Butter Kitchen, Café and Market, a country-style bistro in Sherman Oaks, Calif., is dressed for the heat: guys in shorts and flip-flops, girls in tanks and topknots. And then there’s Nick Jonas, in a charcoal wool Rag & Bone hat, a long-sleeve Ann Demeulemeester shirt, and Nudie Jeans. “Last night was kind of chilly,” he explains of his weather-defying look with a small laugh. “I woke up today thinking it would be the same temperature, but it’s clearly not.” How much overnight change can one guy take? Seemingly, one minute Jonas is a cherub-faced boy-bander with a head of soft curls, and the next he’s this man, a full-fledged sex symbol with a buzz cut. As an actor, he’s drawn to more mature roles. In this fall’s frat-hazing drama, Goat, he plays a morally conflicted fraternity brother. And his new album, Last Year Was Complicated, mines a transformative breakup. Still, he exudes an essential sweetness, and it’s this duality—the interplay of light and dark, pop and pathos—that makes him so exciting to watch.
You’re touring with your new album. Just how much does your onstage look match your personal look?
I go for things that pop a little bit more on-stage—you gotta bring your showmanship. But I still like for everything to be within the bounds of what I wear on the street. I think it has a lot to do with splitting my time between music and acting. Being in character 12 hours a day makes you want to be yourself the rest of the time.
What’s your favorite part of being on the road?
The food. I love trying barbecue from all around the country: Houston, St. Louis … There’s an amazing frozen-custard place in St. Louis called Ted Drewes that I always try to stop at. Also, I toured so long not being 21, so these past two and a half years, it’s been fun to go to bars.
Wait—are you saying you didn’t drink until you were 21?
[Laughs] No. But I was smart. I didn’t go out. I wasn’t delusional about the fact that people could pull out their phone and see how old I was.
How does touring with Demi Lovato compare with touring with your brothers?
Working with Demi is truly unique. She’s a strong woman. A lot of people are concerned about speaking their mind, but she’s fearless. She and I have been through a lot together over the past eight years, and seeing how far she’s come, in her recovery and as a person, has been amazing.
On the subject of recovery, you recently participated in a Reddit AMA in which you described yourself as a recovering teen star.
For a long time I chose not to accept it—the complications that come with [fame]. The experiences we had, the kind of crazy ride we were on, were going to have some effect. But I think I turned out OK, with a reasonable amount of sanity.
No swinging from the chandeliers.
I enjoy my cigar and beverage, and that’s about it. Really good Cuban cigars—Cohíba Behike 52s. I’m kind of an old man.
Have you always felt older than your years?
Yeah, I was forced to get my act together at an early age. Having a real job at 8 [Jonas played Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol on Broadway] sounds funny, but, you know, they really do treat you like an adult. They expect professionalism onstage and off.
You’re getting a lot of attention for your role in Goat. How is Nick Jonas the actor different from Nick Jonas the pop star?
I become someone else while I’m acting, but music stuff has got to be completely authentic. They complement each other. I don’t think I would have been able to be as fearless in the “Close” video, where I had to do things that are by nature uncomfortable, without acting experience. I’m drawn to stuff that puts me on the edge a little bit.
Who is the first person who struck you as cool?
My dad’s friend Roger Hodges. He was this bald, guitar-playing badass. I mean, he was in the worship band at our church. When I was 4 or 5 years old, I told my parents I wanted to look like him. They couldn’t understand it. But he was a badass with his bald head.
Have your tastes evolved since then?
As I got older, Elvis Costello became a big fashion icon for me. I did one photo shoot where I wore vanity glasses. But it felt stupid—I felt like a fraud—so I just let it go.
When you look back on your style, is there anything else that makes you cringe?
I went through an Ed Hardy phase. That burned really hot really fast. But then, besides that? I’ve had a few moments, things that were on-trend years ago that now are just insane. And I’m a firm believer that men should not tuck their pants into their shoes. The relationship between clothing and a man is really interesting. You have to be confident first before whatever you’re wearing has any effect. I’ve seen people pull off some pretty bold s— because they were confident about it.
Photo Credits: Grooming by Marissa Machado/Baxter of Califorina/Art Department; Styling by James Valeri; Production by Kelsey Stevens Production.
We met up with Joe Jonas, JinJoo, Jack Lawless and Cole Whittle of the new pop-funk party band DNCE during a drippy-popsicle sunset one evening in downtown Los Angeles. Even if you’ve never heard of DNCE or seen them starring in the latest Diesel campaign, you’ve likely heard their music. “Cake by the Ocean,” the bouncy disco single off 2015’s Swaay EP, has been splashing around the talk show and festival circuits, pepping up Sprint commercials and creeping steadily up the charts since its release last fall. At first glance, this grown-up teen idol, forever-in-shades fashion plate, scruffy no-fuss indie guy and tatted-up glam rocker with an off-kilter mohawk hardly look like they’d be in the same bar, let alone the same band, but their easy chemistry and deep camaraderie is palpable. “It’s kind of unheard of to start a band with people who all get along, spend every second together and don’t want to kill each other,” Jonas says with a smile.
To understand DNCE, you must first understand the band’s lead singer, Joe Jonas. After making his name at 16 (alongside brothers Kevin and Nick) as a member of the Disney-masterminded singing and acting juggernaut, the Jonas Brothers, he took a break from music after the trio broke up in 2013. “I didn’t want to just rush back into things [after the breakup],” he recalls. “It’s very tough in the music industry to have a second chance and come back with new music that has an effect again.” While he figured out his next move, Joe started working on music with his friends for fun, trying to wrap his arms around the funky, Hall and Oates-inflected pop project he’d been mulling over since his Jonas Brothers days.
In the summer of 2015, things snapped into focus. He decided the sound was better suited to a group project and recruited his old touring buddies Lawless, former drummer for the Jonas Brothers, and JinJoo, the South Korean shredder whom he met when she was playing lead guitar for his one-time opening act, Jordin Sparks. A mutual friend introduced Jonas to Whittle, formerly of Semi Precious Weapons, who would round out the group as their bassist, keyboardist and de facto philosopher.
And just like that, these four 20-somethings became a brand-new band. Their name comes from a serendipitous misspelling of the word ‘dance’ in a group text, and the concept for their hit single was a gift from Swedish producers Mattman and Robin, who inadvertently ended the band’s three-day-long struggle with writer’s block when Jonas overheard their lost-in-translation attempt to order a Sex on the Beach — Cake by the Ocean. This unlikely innuendo inspired the jangly, wacky single that became the band’s calling card and the north star for their sound — pumped, optimistic, groovy, silly and shot through with sunshine. “We sound like our personalities,” Whittle says. “A mix of different people from different places who are all best friends and all having fun.” Their debut EP, all silky falsetto and effervescent grooves, captures kooky romantic vignettes on tracks that use cake as a metaphor for sex and toothbrushes as a metaphor for intimacy, plus one song that playfully imagines life as a girlfriend’s rentboy. It ends with “Jinx,” a sweet ballad (with kazoos!) about being so infatuated in a new relationship that you don’t want to jinx it by saying it out loud.
“I think in the same way that the band was created organically, [‘Cake’] just kind of grew,” Whittle explains. “It grew up really fast, but with loose hands around it — no one was forcing it into pop radio, or forcing the band into the conventional things you have to do to get a hit.” Now, in less than a year, they’ve gone from playing small industry showcases and raucous basement shows, to joining Selena Gomez on her ‘Revival’ tour where they’re bringing the party to over 50 cities. And this August they’ll be releasing their as-yet-untitled full-length LP. As they discuss the future, the members of DNCE emanate the amped-up giddiness and confidence of a new band after their first big break, deepened by their personal knowledge of how rare it is for success and creative fulfillment to walk hand-in-hand. “Every single day is a dream come true,” JinJoo says wistfully, as her bandmates nod in agreement. Whittle adds, “DNCE is on a groovy shag carpet ride.”
Source: PAPER Magazine
Nick Jonas is on course for his highest-charting solo album yet on the Billboard 200, according to industry forecasters. Sources suggest that his latest release, Last Year Was Complicated, could debut at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 chart dated July 2. That would secure Jonas his best ranking ever on the chart, following the No. 6 peak of his self-titled 2014 album, and the No. 3 plateau of his Who I Am album in 2010 (with The Administration).
Last Year Was Complicated — which was released on June 10 via Safehouse/Island Records — may earn over 60,000 equivalent album units in the week ending June 16, with over 40,000 of that sum in traditional album sales.
The Billboard 200 chart ranks the most popular albums of the week based on multi-metric consumption, which includes traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). The top 10 of the new July 2-dated Billboard 200 chart is scheduled to be revealed on Billboard’s websites on Sunday, June 19.
Jonas was of course also part of the sibling trio the Jonas Brothers, which snared five top 10 albums, with two of those hitting No. 1: A Little Bit Longer in 2008 and Lines, Vines and Trying Times in 2009.
As for the No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart dated July 2, Drake’s Views album will likely hold onto the top slot for a seventh consecutive week, with perhaps over 115,000 units.
Elsewhere in the new top 10, watch for the original Broadway cast recording of Hamilton to possibly surge into the top 10 for the first time after its 11 Tony Award wins on June 12. In addition, Jon Bellion’s The Human Condition may bow in the region with over 35,000 units.