Monday, November 6, 2017

It’s 98 Degrees, time to ‘Let it Snow’ at Cache Creek


FAIRFIELD — What do you get when you release a Christmas CD in October?
The answer for 98 Degrees is a 32-city tour in six weeks, including a Nov. 17 stop at Cache Creek in Brooks.

“We are lucky to do it,” said Jeff Timmons. “Now, if my old bones can live up to it.”

The contemporary boy band debuted in 1997. Five years later, they took a 10-year hiatus to work on other projects. The original members reunited in 2012 and have just released, “Let It Snow,” a 12-song CD.

98 Degrees released their first Christmas CD, “This Christmas,” in 1999. It sold more than 1 million copies in the United States.

“We are really proud of the first Christmas record,” Timmons said. “This lives up to the credibility of our first (Christmas) record. It stands up to the first one as far as the quality. We pride ourselves on our vocals.”

Band members discussed their favorite Christmas tunes and considered which ones showcased their vocal abilities when choosing the songs for “Let It Snow,” Timmons said.

His personal favorite? “This Christmas.”
“It’s a Donny Hathaway song,” Timmons said. “A lot of people have covered it. I love his rendition of it.”

A close second are “O Holy Night” and “What Child is This.”
“They throw you back to different times in your life,” he said of the songs.

Timmons is working on solo music to release in the future. He’s working without a release date.

“I think of music as more of a personal thing and less of a product,” he said.

He thought differently when music was his only source of income. There was pressure to finish the record and hit the road touring, he said.

Right now his attention is on the band, which includes brothers Nick and Drew Lachey and Justin Jeffre. Nick Lachey is also an actor. Jeffre ran for mayor of Cincinnati in 2005 and remains an activist.
Reuniting the quartet was fairly simple.
“We snapped right back into it,” he said.
The big change was having their families on the road.

“I think it’s more raucous than the first time around,” he said. “It’s a most gratifying experience having family on the road.”
Timmons was noncommittal as to the future of 98 Degrees in the new year.

“We thought we would do a little tour and have a little fun,” he said.
Timmons, 44, is also involved with Men of the Strip, a fresh take on the “Male Revue.” He danced in the production and is co-owner.
He’s also watched his daughter, Alyssa Timmons modeling during Fashion Week. She’s taken a break from college to pursue the new career.

“I can’t tell her ‘no,’ ” Timmons said. “But I can keep an eye on what she’s doing.”