At Home With… AJ McLean: Backstreet Boys Singer Shares ‘Wild World’ Cover & Quarantine Playlist

After giving love to Rihanna, Backstreet Boy AJ Mclean offered his take on a Cat Steven’s classic to honor healthcare and essential workers. He also tells us what he’s bumping to keep his kids' spirits high.

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It is indeed a wild world out there, and AJ McLean has been doing his part to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus and raise the spirits of everyone during this global pandemic. Like many during this time of grief and uncertainty, the Backstreet Boys star has turned to music for solace. After sharing his version of Rihanna’s “Love On The Brain,” AJ turned his thoughts to the past. For his new cover, AJ went a bit old school, reworking “Wild World,” the classic song from Yusuf Islam (commonly known as Cat Stevens.)

In the new video accompanying AJ’s soulful rendition, he stands against a grassy landscape to channel Bob Dylan from “Subterranean Homesick Blues,” holding up posters with some of the lyrics — changed to reflect what’s going on in the current situation – written on them. As the song plays, we’re treated to a montage of healthcare workers, first responders, and brave essential workers who have kept everyone healthy, safe, and fed during this time. “I want to take a minute to thank so many people,” says AJ in the video. “Our doctors, first responders, nurses, people that work at the grocery stores helping us get food, police officers, firemen, everyone who’s helping us to get through this. We can do this. One love. God bless you guys. Let’s all stay together, and let’s beat COVID-19.”

From there, AJ is joined by his friends and family, including his daughters Ava, 7, and Lyric, 3. His daughters, as he says to HollywoodLife, have been blasting a certain other boy band during their time in quarantine. AJ also reveals his at-home diet, what he’s been doing to stay lean, and why his household is eagerly counting down the days until Chromatica’s release.


HollywoodLife: What are you binge-watching?

AJ McLean: I’ve been binge-watching Ozark!

What are you doing to work-out or stay fit at home?

I’ve been staying in shape by working out with my trainer three days a week on FaceTime. We do high-intensity workouts, and I accompany the exercise with a grain-free, sugar-free, soda free, high protein diet, as well as being sober!

What are you at home quarantine essentials (or, what did you stock up on?)

Quarantine essentials are for me are mainly foods that are all on my diet, I love a brand called “Oats” as well as Kitemill yogurt. My favorite two snacks.

What’s on your Quarantine playlist?

Quarantine playlist is a lot of funk records, new school, and old. My oldest daughter is obsessed with the Jonas Brothers’ “What A Man Gotta Do,” and my youngest is all about Lady Gaga, so both are on heavy rotation.


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