EXCLUSIVE: 98 Degrees Say They're Glad They Weren't Famous During the Social Media Era, Open Up About Upcoming
By Zach Seemayer
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For the members of 98 Degrees, gaining fame in the days before social media was a blessing, and for singer Nick Lachey, the way today's young superstars deal with the pressure of public scrutiny is very impressive.
"I have such respect for the Justin Biebers and One Directions, and the people who are out now and having that kind of fame at a young age," Lachey shared when the members of 98 degrees spoke with ET's Jennifer Peros at 1010 WINS Adorama Live Theater in New York City on Thursday.
The group dropped their first album in 1997 -- eight years before YouTube launched, nine years before Twitter went live or Facebook became accessible to everyone, 13 years before Instagram was created and 14 years before Snapchat hit the app store.
However, with the group preparing to hit the road on their upcoming My2K Tour, they'll be facing that pressure themselves while they travel the country. And the guys are leaving their families at home, so it will feel like a return to how things used to be during their boy band heyday.
"None of us are bringing our family on the road this time, it's just us on the tour bus like the old days," Lachey revealed. "I will actually be missing my 5-year wedding anniversary, 'cause I'll be with these schmucks out on the road somewhere. So I expect a big cuddle after the show."
However, there's no denying that things have changed in the two decades since they started the group. According to Lachey, it's not just "bad knees and bad back pain" that makes the band different from when they performed in their youth.
"I think it's perspective," Lachey explained. "We were in such a whirlwind back in those days, and it was like holding on for dear life. [There were ]a lot of great memories and a lot of great times back then but I think now [we're all] in a different place in life and we have a different perspective."
The My2K Tour, which also features O-Town, Ryan Cabrera and Dream, kicks off July 8 in Park City, Kansas and wraps up on August 29 in San Francisco, California. For more on 98 Degrees' highly anticipated reunion tour, check out the video below.