Lisa Kosty

*NSYNC’s Joey Fatone called in “a lot of favors” to get ‘A Very Boy Band Holiday’ onto ABC tonight

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Tonight at 8 p.m. ET on ABC, it’s A Very Boy Band Holiday, featuring members of *NSYNC, O-Town, 98 Degrees, New Kids on the Block, New Edition, Boyz II Men and 98 Degrees. But as you can imagine, it wasn’t easy to wrangle all those guys into participating.

“There was a lot of favors. I ain’t going to lie!” laughs *NSYNC’s Joey Fatone, who helped put the special together after O-Town’s Erik Michael Estrada came up with the concept.

“There was a lot of, ‘Hey man, would you like to do this?'” Joey tells ABC Audio. “Some people, they were 100%. Some people took convincing — but I’m sure…when they see this — and maybe hopefully do it next year again — we’ll have more people and do different combinations, which should be fun.”

The “different combinations” are what the show’s all about, as various group members come together to perform holiday classics and their own Christmas songs. For instance, Joey, Erik and 98 Degrees teaming up to sing *NSYNC’s “Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays.”

A Very Boy Band Holiday is just the latest example of the boy-band cross pollination we’ve seen this past year, with Joey, Lance Bass and Chris Kirkpatrick collaborating with Backstreet Boys AJ McLean and Nick Carter Boyz II Men’s Wanya [wahn-YAY] Morris and 98 Degrees’ Jeff Timmons.  So, will we see more of this in 2022?

“I hope so,” Joey says. “I mean, it’s fun, it’s different. Y’know, Boyz II Men, Backstreet, O-Town, 98 Degrees, they’ve worked with their guys…[for] well over 20 years, some of us 30 years. So to work with a different group of people, and sing your songs…and also sing other songs that you’re familiar with, that are not your songs — why not?”