Hot on the heels of NSYNC’s explosive appearance at the MTV Video Music Awards, Joey Fatone performed the group’s biggest hits in Tampa, Florida on Friday night and ET Canada was exclusively with the musician as he stepped off stage and dished on the boy band’s buzzy reunion.

In town for 90s Con, Fatone, 46, put on a sold-out Joey Fatone & Friends gig at Tampa Theater, where he was joined by his sister Janine and Backstreet Boys pal AJ McLean.

McLean was still buzzing from Tuesday’s NSYNC reunion, telling the audience he became “teary” watching Fatone, Justin Timberlake, JC Chasez, Lance Bass and Chris Kirkpatrick come together at the VMA’s to present an award to Taylor Swift — who fangirled and questioned the band on their future.

“She went, ‘What the hell are you guys doing?’ That was [her] big question.”

READ MORE: NSYNC Band Members Tease Potential Tour And Album: ‘Anything Is Possible’

So, what went down after the “Bye Bye Bye” singers escorted Swift off stage? More questioning about what the band has in store!

“She’s a sweetheart,” Fatone told us. “We presented to her, then walked off and she went, ‘What the hell are you guys doing?’ That was [her] big question. She had no idea we’d be there, so we caught her off-guard.”

Swift wasn’t the only NSYNC fan caught off-guard. A backstage video showing rapper Megan Thee Stallion appearing to argue with Timberlake prompted rumors of a feud — which the two promptly dispelled by posting a clip showing them hanging after the event.

“We just went in and did it. Oddly enough, it’s still second nature, which is cool.”

Fatone, who can be seen standing between Megan and Timberlake during the first video, was stunned at how speculation of a fight spread like wildfire.

“Everyone was like, ‘Megan Thee Stallion got mad at Justin,’ and I’m like, ‘She was never mad at him!’ He said, ‘Nice to meet you,’ and she went, ‘We can’t meet like this.’ She wanted a proper meeting because she was thrown off-guard.”

As for what Swift, Megan and other fans can expect following the biggest comeback of 2023, the group will release “Better Place” on Sept. 29 as part of the Trolls Band Together soundtrack. While the writers’ strike limits how much they can promote the track — their first new song in 20-plus years — a video they posted showing their studio reunion quickly went viral.

READ MORE: Justin Timberlake Calls Upcoming NSYNC Reunion Track ‘A Love Letter To Fans’ In Clip Of The Band’s Studio Session; Announces Release Date For ‘Better Place’

“It was awesome,” Fatone said about the recording session, which went down in Los Angeles. “People were getting nostalgic and teary-eyed about the video, which is funny because for us, getting in there, it was just like, ‘Let’s get to work — here’s our parts, we know what to do.’  There was no, ‘What do we do again?’ We just went in and did it. Oddly enough, it’s still second nature, which is cool.”

Performing live also remains second nature for Fatone, who has continued belting out NSYNC hits like “It’s Gonna Be Me” at his Joey Fatone & Friends shows at the Epcot Center and events like 2021’s Las Vegas engagement, The Afterparty, which he headlined alongside McLean, Nick Carter and Wanya Morris.

At Friday’s concert, he and McLean had the crowd going crazy as they performed favorites including “This I Promise You,” and “Space Cowboy.” Janine then joined the pair, performing Wilson Phillip’s “Hold On.”


The energetic gig also saw fans spinning a wheel of ’90s hits, like Blink-182’s “All the Small Things” and Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” to determine what Fatone and friends performed next.

A TV theme song segment meanwhile included “Friends”, “Cheers” and “Saved by the Bell”.

Backstreet Boys fans were treated to performances of “Larger Than Life” and “I Want It That Way,” plus McLean’s solo songs “Love Song Love” and “Electric.” The father-of-two also fanboyed in the front row as Fatone performed *NSYNC’s “Here We Go.”


Fatone and McLean aren’t the only ’90s popstars taking over Tampa. Carter performed a solo gig during the ’90s Con Official After Party on Saturday evening, while bandmate Howie Dorough wrapped up the weekend with a Howie Eatz dinner event. TLC also appeared at the three-day event, alongside the casts of “Beverly Hills 90210”, “Saved by the Bell”, “Boy Meets World” and “Fuller House”.

“The ’90s are back,” says Fatone. “Let’s ride the wave!”