The Backstreet Boys recently released their first new song in five years, but that doesn’t mean they mind revisiting the ’90s hits we already know and love. On Thursday, the group appeared on The Tonight Show, where they gave “I Want It That Way” the “classroom instrument” treatment with host Jimmy Fallon and house band The Roots.
The “Classroom Instruments” bit is always a highlight of Fallon’s show, and the Backstreet Boys’ edition was no exception. As they did in the music video for the 1999 hit song, the boys — Nick Carter, Kevin Richardson, AJ McLean, Brian Littrell, and Howie Dorough — as well as Fallon and every member of The Roots, dressed in all white for the performance, which might be our new favorite version of the tune.
As is the norm, everyone was given a classroom instrument to play as they sang. Litrell started with an apple shaker and later switched over to a wooden block to give the tune a little more depth, while Carter skillfully manned the tambourine. Meanwhile, McLean was an expert on the maraca, Dorough coaxed the tune’s defining click beat out of a coconut, and Richardson gave us all some major music-class flashbacks as he played the güiro.
Fallon, of course, rotated through several nostalgic instruments, including a shaker and wooden block of his own, as well as a drum and a keyboard.
“I Want It That Way” remains one of the Backstreet Boys’ most defining hits, even if, as Carter recently revealed, they don’t have the best memories of making the video that defined our youth. With any luck, their Fallon sing-along will leave a more positive lasting impression.
What did you think of the classroom instruments version of “I Want It That Way”? Let us know @BritandCo!
(photo via Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for 103.5 KTU)