Alexander James

Alexander James “Alex” McLean, (born January 9, 1978), known as A.J. McLean, is an Americanmusician and singer. He is a member of the Florida based vocal group, the Backstreet Boys.

Early life

McLean was born in West Palm Beach, Florida to his mother, Denise Fernandez, and father Bob McLean. McLean is of Cuban descent. His parents got divorced and his father left the family when McLean was two years old, and he was raised by his mother and her parents, Ursula and Adolph Fernandez.[1] In January 1986 at 8 years old, he acted in his first role as Little Mike in the 1986 film Truth or Dare[2] In 1990, he moved to Orlando, Florida with his mother and grandparents to concentrate on his acting and singing career. After numerous auditions for various Nickelodeon and Disney projects, including the Nickelodeon show GUTS, he landed a role in Nickelodeon’s Welcome Freshmen, and in a comedy series called Hi Honey, I’m Home! on which he played a character named “Skunk”.

McLean created a character, whom he named “Johnny NoName”, to use as his alter ego. He uses it as his name when not performing with other members of the Backstreet Boys.[3] The character has similarities to McLean; for instance, both had single mothers, and lived with their grandparents from a young age. There are also differences – Johnny has been to prison[4] whereas McLean has not.

McLean has occasionally performed in rock/metal clubs around New York under his alter ego, Johnny No Name. He established a foundation called the JNN Foundation to raise funds for diabetes research and other causes like keeping music programs in schools. McLean also did a nine-city tour to support VH1 Save the Music as Johnny No Name.

Originally McLean’s alter ego was named Johnny Suede. It shared its name with a character played by Brad Pitt and when the studio threatened to sue McLean, he changed the name to Johnny No Name.

Personal life

McLean also suffered drug and alcohol addiction which he went to rehab for in 2001 (and again in 2002) following an intervention by the Backstreet Boys headed by former member Kevin Richardson. During an interview with New Zealand radio station ZM, McLean described his addictions as the hardest things he has ever had to go through, stating it is something he battles with every day.[7] He checked into rehab for the 3rd time on January 10, 2011 citing “personal reasons” which are most likely related to his history of alcohol abuse.[8] In preparation for the NKOTB and Backstreet Boys tour, McLean has said, “I want to be healthy and perform and sing for people at my very best and happiest.” His time in rehab is not expected to affect the tour.He is engaged to Rochelle Deanna Karidis, to whom he proposed on his birthday in 2010 while celebrating at the Hard Rock Hotel’s Wasted Space nightclub in Las Vegas. At the stroke of midnight, McLean brought Karidis on stage and proposed with a ring he had purchased from the Hard Rock Hotel’s jewelry store, Rocks just a few hours prior. Their wedding is set for May 14, 2011.

A.J. McLean
Background information
Birth name Alexander James McLean
Also known as Alex, A.J.
Born January 9, 1978 (1978-01-09) (age 33)
Origin West Palm Beach, Florida, United States
Genres Pop
Pop rock
Occupations Singer, songwriter, actor
Instruments Vocals, bass guitar, piano, saxophone, acoustic guitar
Years active 1986–present
Labels Jive, Avex, Podman
Associated acts Backstreet Boys


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