Timberlake, Justin


Timberlake, Justin

▪ American singer, songwriter, actor, and producer
in full  Justin Randall Timberlake 
born Jan. 31, 1981, Memphis, Tenn., U.S.

      American singer, songwriter, actor, and producer who was part of the teen pop revival of the 1990s and 2000s. He was a member of the hugely successful “boy band” *NSYNC before beginning his solo music career.

      Along with Britney Spears (Spears, Britney), Christina Aguilera (Aguilera, Christina), and future *NSYNC member J.C. Chasez, Timberlake launched his performing career in the late 1980s on the Disney Channel's The New Mickey Mouse Club. In 1996 he and Chasez were recruited for the male pop vocal quintet *NSYNC. The group's self-titled debut, released in 1998, did well commercially after a slow start, and their second effort, No Strings Attached (2000), became one of the fastest-selling album's in history, selling more than 14 million copies and featuring a string of hits, including the chart-topping "It's Gonna Be Me." Timberlake began his solo recording career in 2001 after the release of *NSYNC's third album.

      During his tenure with *NSYNC, Timberlake cultivated his role as a songwriter, and his breakup with longtime love interest Spears provided the inspiration for a number of songs on his Grammy Award-winning (best pop vocal album) solo debut, Justified (2002), most notably "Cry Me a River" (best male pop vocal performance). In 2003 Timberlake was a guest performer on the Black Eyed Peas' hit "Where Is the Love?" During the halftime performance of the 2004 Super Bowl, Timberlake was involved in the notorious “wardrobe malfunction” when by design he pulled off part of costar Janet Jackson (Jackson, Janet)'s top. His second solo release, the Prince-influenced FutureSex/LoveSounds (2006), featured production work by Timbaland and Rick Rubin and earned four Grammy Awards, including best dance recording for "Sexy Back." Timberlake was not always treated kindly by critics, but few would argue that his solo work, solidly in the vein of rhythm-and-blues and blue-eyed soul, had not transcended his bubblegum dance-pop origins, and he sold millions of recordings in the process. Timberlake dabbled in acting, with his first substantial roles coming in Alpha Dog (2006) and Black Snake Moan (2007).

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Universalium. 2010.

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