The Jonas Brothers’ forthcoming sixth album features elements of classic ’70s pop and Americana with a modern edge, the trio tells Variety ahead of the band’s Jan. 30 Hollywood Walk of Fame star dedication ceremony.
At the ceremony on Monday, the brothers revealed that the album is due May 5 and will be accompanied by a tour. “We are excited to announce today that our new album, ‘The Album,’ will be coming out May 5,” Nick Jonas said. “And we can’t wait to see you all on tour later this year.”
In much the same way that Ryan Tedder captained the ship on their last release, “Happiness Begins,” artist-producer Jon Bellion took the reins on the sonics.
As for the lyrics, maturity is reflected in the new songs. Hints Joe Jonas: “The direction of the lyrics, the stories we’re telling. … It has changed a lot.”
Still, wide-reaching appeal is also important for fans who regularly turn up to shows with their parents and offspring. “There are so many different generations,” Nick Jonas adds. “How do we make an album that speaks to all those different walks of life and ages? … We wanted to find a way to tell stories that are universal but also ultra-personal.”
With the ’70s looming large over the project, it’s unsurprising to hear nods to another uber-successful sibling trio: the Bee Gees. “They were a huge influence in our lives, growing up and listening to them with our father,” Kevin Jonas says enthusiastically. “And obviously, as we grew up being three brothers in a band, we definitely understood similarities.”
Asked for their personal favorites on the album, the brothers diverge in their track choices.
Joe: “‘Wings.’ It might be the shortest song on the album, but I like it because it feels like a trailer to the rest of the body of work. Also ‘Montana Sky.’ There’s a lot more acoustic guitar and real organic instruments that tap into a bunch of different influences, but we’re aware of the fact that we’re not a country act. Jon flipped it on its head — he’s got a modern edge to everything he does, even if it has really classic elements.”
Kevin: “‘Vacation Eyes’ is based on how my relationship started with my wife. We met on vacation — and continuing that love story every single day is how I want to live my life. It makes me want to be on the beach! It’s just such a fun song about enjoying life.”
Nick: “I’m torn between ‘Little Bird,’ which is a song about parenthood that will affect people in different ways, and ‘Waffle House.’ It was a last-minute addition. At first, it was a bit of a head scratcher, but the more I listened to it, the more I loved it. I think it really encapsulates a moment in time for us. Musically it taps into some of my favorites: Doobie Brothers and Bee Gees, and others from that era. It’s a really, really, fun song. We can’t wait to play it live.”