Before New Kids on The Block rang in 2019 with an iconic set in Times Square at Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, members of the band reflected back to a tour that took place 10 years ago, where their opening act was a little-known singer who calls herself Lady Gaga.
“It was apparent to all of us that she was going to be a big star,” the group’s Joey McIntyre recalled.
Gaga opened for NKOTB in 2008, on the group’s first tour after a 14-year hiatus. She was chosen after the group’s Donnie Wahlberg caught her performance of “Just Dance” in Las Vegas at Perez Hilton’s Fourth of July Spectacular. It was the first arena tour for the singer, who quickly rose to superstardom and is currently nominated for a Golden Globe — and is a frontrunner for an Oscar nomination — for her iconic performance as Ally Maine in last year’s film, “A Star is Born,” which costars and was directed by Bradley Cooper.
Coincidentally, she’s also back in Las Vegas — but this time with an ambitious residency, “Lady Gaga Enigma,” that has drawn rave reviews, and a big endorsement from reigning Vegas queen Celine Dion, since it opened Friday night.
“She had a lot of energy, and she was also a sweetheart,” McIntyre remembers. “She was very warm, collaborative, exciting and inspiring. I don’t think any of us were surprised that she has continued to grow as an artist and attracted so many people.”
“The coolest thing about her is she made her own clothes — I don’t know if she does now, but she used to,” remembered Jordan Knight, adding that Gaga would come to the group for feedback on her creations.
“She would come in and say, “I made this! How do you like it?,’ and we were like, [incredulously], ‘How did you make that?’,” he recalled. “She was just so creative and talented and a great singer. Everyone knew she was destined.”