It’s clear that Justin Timberlake has fully transformed from the neo-R&B bad boy with the shaved head on Futuresex/LoveSounds into The 20/20 Experience‘s pillar of vintage class and old-school swank. But this retro thing is no mere pose — in a wide-ranging interview over at Myspace (synergy!), JT sounds like a mature man who’s comfortable with his legacy and with doing things the Sinatra way, which is to say, his way. And if people like it, then that’s a bonus. In other words, Timberlake is now an old soul.
To prove it, here are seven quotes from the Q&A that make JT sound like one of the olds.
1. He’s got those aches and pains.
“I’m sick, jet-legged [sic] I got the flu around Grammy weekend, and then we had to go on a promo trip and I’ve just been fighting off exhaustion for like, ever [...] I’m a little older than I used to be. I don’t bounce back as easily.”
2. He used the word “hullabaloo.”
“I really just want to keep it simple. I don’t want a lot of hullabaloo around the music.”
3. He’s distrustful of those crazy keytars and button-pushers.
“You play a song like ‘SexyBack’ or ‘My Love’ or songs from even the first record, there’s certain elements that have those synth elements that have to be put into it, and for me, I just wanted to kind of get away from that a little bit on this record and so it really does translate live.
4. He can’t remember the words.
“Couple of them had to help me relearn songs from my first record [...] I’m listening to all this new stuff and I’m going back and going, wait, what are the lyrics to ‘Señorita?’”
5. He is well-versed in the ways of vinyl.
“Vinyl was the only way you could get music and there was only so much available data, there was only so much available space on a vinyl so they would fade songs out, but when you don’t have to do that, I just felt like these songs would transform themselves into something else.”
6. He’s saving the booty-shaking for the youngsters.
“I really do think my effort with the last album was to make people dance, and I think with this album, I wrote a lot of songs that make me want to sing [...] I want to do a dance record, but not like a 120 bpm dance record. I want to do like a Marvin Gaye ‘Gotta Give It Up,’ Curtis Mayfield, ‘Move On Up.’”
7. He remembers the old days, when music festivals were just about good music and good drugs.
“I’ve been to Coachella many times but not remembered a lot of it, I’ll leave it at that. But I remember I used to go to Coachella a long time ago. I remember Coachella when there wasn’t like, paparazzi and stuff there. Like, I stood in an open field and one year I saw Nine Inch Nails and the next year I saw Weezer and I was standing in the middle of the field, you know, like tripping my mind out.”
Read the full interview at Myspace.