Nick Carter Talks Backstreet Boys’ Future, Tearful New Single, Acting

Singer/songwriter hopes his musical growth will show in group's next effort.

Though Nick Carter’s solo album Now or Never takes a trip down an ’80s memory lane, he obviously never paid much mind to the Cure classic “Boys Don’t Cry” — the Backstreet Boy’s next single, “Do I Have to Cry For You?” insists that laying on the waterworks is nothing to be ashamed of, not even for guys.

“It’s about a guy,” Carter explained. “It’s about a relationship, really. Relationships go bad, and things happen, and sometimes, you just want to break down, and you just want to go to [the extreme] and cry, you now? That’s what that song is about. It’s kind of a like a guy saying he’s not too afraid to cry for his woman, because of things that have gone on, and the video really does express that. The video is perfect with what the song is.”

Carter shot the video for “Do I Have to Cry for You?” in Los Angeles earlier this month with fashion photographer-turned-director Matthew Rolston (Madonna, Jewel, Bryan Adams). The flowery ballad, Carter’s follow-up to “Help Me,” continues the boy-band heartthrob’s excursion into rock (see “Nick Carter Album A Trip Back To The ’80s” ), but that doesn’t mean he’s
fully converted yet.

“It’s just something different,” Carter said. “I like to not come off like everyone would expect. I’m sure everyone thought it would be so easy for me to do exactly what I had done before, but why, when you can experiment? I love rock music, so the album has a rock flavor to it. But I can’t say that the future wouldn’t be different, that I wouldn’t have other flavors and do something different. I kind of consider myself a chameleon in music. I love all sorts of music.”

Carter hopes to support Now or Never on tour, and he’s in the process of assembling a band for the proposed outing. “I would love to tour,” he said. “I want to play smaller venues, really smaller venues, just get really intimate with the audience and start from the ground up.”

Though he doesn’t know how it’ll end up affecting the Backstreet Boys, Carter said that he hopes his solo experience creating music on a less pop, more singer/songwriter level will bleed over into the boy band before they get too involved in the writing process. The group is currently in the pre-production stage for their follow-up to 2000′s Black & Blue. “I play guitar now,” Carter said, “which I didn’t do before. It’s more organic, what I’m doing. I feel like maybe I can bring something new to the table with them — if I do something in the future with them — that maybe they can just pull from what I’m learning and doing.”

As for his budding acting career, Carter looks forward to future appearances on NBC’s new drama “American Dreams” as the frontman of Jay & the Americans (see “Nick Carter Lands All-American TV Role” ), but is also currently reading scripts to see if other roles present themselves first.

“It’s cool the way they left off ‘American Dreams,’ ” Carter said. “I could easily come back and do another episode with them. I think I’ll do something else before I do ‘American Dreams,’ [again] though. I feel like I’ve got to open my doors and check out new things. As long as I enjoy anything that I’m doing, I’ll do it. That’s all that matters.”