In late 2002 Justin Timberlake managed to make the leap that many young stars never accomplish—the leap from teen idol to a full-fledged, adult artist, but where did he grow up?
Justin Timberlake grew up in Memphis, TN, considered to be the home of the blues and the birthplace of rock and roll, after his birth in January of 1981.
Read more below about Justin Timberlake’s childhood and how he was destined for the stars.
Singing From When He Could Walk
We all know little kids who just love to sing and dance, but do you know a toddler who’s only two who can sing in perfect harmony to songs on the radio? Well, the iconic pop star Justin Timberlake could – isn’t that exceptional? Timberlake recalled in a Time for Kids interview, “Ever since I was a little boy I always sang. So I figured out that was sort of my calling.”
When Timberlake was three his parents divorced. He remained friends with his father, but he grew up with his mother and his stepfather, Paul Harless, who Lynne married when Timberlake was five years old.
As a child, Justin was extremely close to his mother. Lynne later became her son’s manager.
Timberlake started out singing in the church choir; he began his stage career by performing in countless local talent contests.
In 1992, after several years of voice lessons, he appeared on Star Search, a televised tournament-style talent competition that helped launch the careers of many top entertainers. The eleven-year-old sang under the name of Justin Randall, and although he received high marks from the judges, he did not win the contest.
Despite this loss, Timberlake was not discouraged. He continued to audition.
By 1993, at age twelve, he earned a spot on The Mickey Mouse Club, a half-hour show for kids that involved singing, dancing, and comedy sketches. Competition to be a Mouseketeer was high, considering thousands of young kids tried out for the show, so you can imagine that Justin was delighted to be added to the program.
Of his experience on The Mickey Mouse Club, Timberlake revealed, “We were taking acting classes, music classes, dance classes. We were learning how coverage and editing and cinematography work. And being put in front of a live audience, learning how to engage the crowd to get a laugh. Honestly, it was like SNL for children”
Famed By 15
According to Hollywood Reporter, in 2017 Justin Timberlake was remembering the first time he got chased by a mob of shrieking teenage girls.
“I was about 15 or 16 years old, we’d just given a concert in Germany at a festival on this huge field. And we were in the tour bus afterward, driving on a dirt road, and I looked out the window and saw all these young, impressionable females running after the bus.”
Of his childhood, Justin said: “I think we can all agree that I did not have a normal childhood.” Later he added that he couldn’t remember not being famous.
After the birth of his first child, Silas, with actress and model wife Jessica Biel, Timberlake revealed to Popcrush,
“You go through your life with your own traumas, big and small, and think, ‘It’s not that bad, I have a lot to be thankful for, my parents did the best they could’… But then you have a child of your own, and suddenly it opens all the floodgates, and you’re like, ‘No, no, no! That childhood trauma really did f*** me up!”
Justin Timberlake is a man of many wonders who demonstrates that perseverance can go a long way in the industry he works in. By not giving up at the first hurdle and through believing in his array of talents, Timberlake has become one of the most successful solo singers.