Aaron Carter has a deep, gravelly voice. This may not be what you remember coming from the gangly, thirteen-year-old blonde kid who rapped about his block “party of the year” and his dream game of one-on-one against Shaquille O’Neal in the early 2000s. “Everyone will start to see that I’m not going to be the same as I was back then, and I’m not afraid to express myself,” Mr. Carter said in an interview with the Gazette. “I’m going to do new, big things.”
On the back-end of his 90-plus-city North American tour, The After Party Tour, Mr. Carter is performing at Dreamland on Sunday, July 7. The tour, a nod to his second album, Aaron’s Party, began in February of this year with the intent to “show fans that I’m still here.” Mr. Carter is extending the tour through the fall with hopes to take it overseas in the next few years.
“I was going to take some time off after, but it became clear I don’t have any time for time off,” he said.
Aaron Carter was once a tween sensation, dating stars like Amanda Bynes, Hilary Duff and Lindsay Lohan, and, not least, opening as a solo act for his brother’s band, the Backstreet Boys. After recording hits like Bounce, Aaron’s Party and I Want Candy across four studio albums, he fell out of the public eye. He also took a break from music, jumping from reality shows like Dancing With the Stars to a stint in rehab to a central role on Broadway. Now, at 25, he is back with what he hopes to be a career-revitalizing tour, a lead-up to his first album in 10 years.
“I think that people have been skeptical coming, [but] I’m a performer. I’ve been doing it almost 20 years, too,” he said. “I know how to entertain and that’s what they [the fans] want me to do. That’s always what I was about, dancing and performing.”
The popstar won’t confirm the swirling internet rumors (and photos) that he was recently beaten up while on tour in Boston by fans of the ‘90s pop band New Kids on the Block over a supposed pop-music territory dispute.
“I will say there was no...hidden agenda,” he said. “It was just a few jealous guys. That’s all I’ll say.”
The tour is the first of what the artist hopes to be a new era for him, leaving behind the days of performing other people’s work and the shadow of his older popstar brother, Nick, and into a new identity of being an all-around performer. He wrote and produced all of the material on his new album, sometimes from his tour bus. He took a few years off to “lock myself in the studio and just let things come out organic.”
“I’m just trying to do what feels right for me and real,” he said of the new material. He hopes to release multiple EPs later this summer before putting out a full new album.
Mr. Carter promises new material Sunday like “His Is The Life, a “mixture between rap and singy-pop,” as well as some of the old hits. But, he warns, “I can’t be a little kid forever, and I don’t plan on it.”
Aaron Carter performs this Sunday, July 7, at Dreamland in Oak Bluffs, as a part of The After Party Tour. Doors open at 7 p.m., show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25 for general admission, $75 for a VIP pre-show meet-and-greet.