Lost amidst all of the nauseating Super Bowl hype (dueling bro’s, deer antler spray, ten year old murder cases, obnoxious statements made about gays in the NFL, the bleak future of the NFL, Joe Flacco calling a Super Bowl in New Jersey “retarded,” Beyonce proving that she can in fact sing the National Anthem) was the return of Mr. Justin Timberlake. No stupid romantic comedies or stupid sci-fi thrillers. Just some jams, a sharp as hell suit and a dapperly awesome back up band.
Oh and Jay Z showed up.
Is Timberlake’s new song “Suit and Tie” the best piece of music to come out in the past couple years? No, not really. But it’s still cooler than most of the tunes out there. And that should count for something. It’s the first single off of his upcoming album, The 20/20 Experience, which will be released March 19th. It’s his first album since 2006’s Future Sex/Love Sounds.
Ever since the Summer of Timberlake (the summer of 2008,) I’ve been a big fan of JT.
What exactly was the Summer of Timberlake?
The Summer of Timberlake
It was the summer of 2008, a summer that wasn’t any hotter than a normal summer or colder than any weird summer. It was a summer of being on the road- the Atlantic City Expressway, 95 North, 95 South, all 33 versions of 95 that surround Baltimore and DC and the dreaded Pennsylvania Turnpike among others- you know, pesky back roads and winding country roads with non-distinct names like State 332. Long days, long nights, long swigs of Blue Gatorade- it was just a good ol’ summer of shuckin’ and drivin’ in some good ol’ American trucks-box trucks, pick up trucks, trucks hauling a trailer. Big White and/or his brother Jables and I logged some serious hours that summer,but besides exhaustion and traffic, there was another constant in our lives- the music of Justin Timberlake, specifically the album Future Sex/Love Sounds.
That album ended up being the perfect soundtrack to that long, sweaty summer. It had sing-a longs, head-shaking grooves and start up disco dance barn burners. It was ideal for an open road & perfect for a toilet clogged freeway. Crazy Ray disapproved vehemently, but even after he threw the CD across the warehouse it still played. That burnt CD would net let a Crazy Ray Crazy Rampage bring it down.
In the same way The Town made me loyal to Ben Affleck, the first few pages of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius made me loyal to Dave Eggers and her Daily Show days made me loyal to Olivia Munn, the Summer of Timberlake made me loyal to Justin Timberlake.
So while I’ve only seen a few spotty videos of his Super Bowl party performance, it’s enough to be both reassuring and re-energizing.
Mr. Timberlake is back. Everything is right in the world.
Except for politics. Politics are still very wrong.
Photos from AP & Getty Images