Backstreet Boys' Howie Dorough Details Forthcoming Christmas Album, Talks Performing With Drake (Exclusive)

Dorough reveals the 13-track album has been decades in the making.

Christmas in July?! That's how the Backstreet Boys roll these days, after the band surprised its legion of fans by announcing they're releasing their first-ever Christmas album!

Howie Dorough spoke to ET's Lauren Zima and shared some of the major deets when it comes to their forthcoming Christmas album, A Very Backstreet Christmas. Dorough tells ET that, for starters, the band had to narrow down the number of songs for this album, and they finally settled on a 13-track album.

Dorough says there was always something getting in the way of the band producing a Christmas album. More recently, it was the pandemic. But, talk about having a glass-half-full perspective.

"Believe it or not COVID gave us the gift of time to work on this record," Dorough says. "We started working on this about two years ago. Normally, during regular times, we're always on tour. So, now that we have the time off we started working on it." 

And off they went to work. Dorough says they had over 50 songs and finally narrowed it down to 13 songs.

"It was a process of the most votes," Dorough says.

The band's Christmas album will consist of three original songs and 10 remakes of some of the most cherished Christmas classics. Nick Carter, for example, loves "Last Christmas" from Wham! and the band's rendition is so good, Dorough says their remake is "a really strong contender of being the first single" for the Christmas album.

A Very Backstreet Christmas drops Oct. 14, and fans can already pre-order it at the band's website.

In the meantime, fans are still a little shook from watching Drake make a surprise appearance at the Backstreet Boys' concert in Toronto over the weekend. Drizzy himself appeared on stage during the group's DNA World Tour stop in the rapper's hometown, and he performed the band's hit "I Want It That Way."

Drake revealed at the concert why the band holds such a special place in his heart, and now Dorough explained to ET how the surprise appearance came to be. 

"It just happened so naturally, from him catching up with Kevin [Richardson] a couple nights before at one of his favorite Italian restaurants there," Dorough explained. "They were both there at the same time. He just approached Kevin and was like, 'Dude, I'm a fan. I'm a fan.' He's like, 'I have to admit, I know you.' He's like, 'I would love to at least introduce you guys. No. More than that, I would love to sing with you guys if you'd be down with it.'"

"We were like, 'Absolutely!'" Dorough continued. "And I even went to another level. I told the guys we're gonna surprise him and during my part of 'I Want It That Way' in the bridge, I said I wanna sing a little homage to him with [Drake's hit 2013 single] 'Hold On, We're Going Home,' which I think totally surprised him. He didn't know it was coming at all. I think I surprised the fans up there in Toronto. As an artist and entertainer, it was a great collaboration, for sure."



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