Take it from Lance Bass: Don’t worry what others think of you

From growing up gay to dirty pop to family man.

We're all about that bass -- Lance Bass that is!

He’s best known for telling fans “bye, bye, bye” with the boy band sensation NSYNC.

We caught up with the 39-year-old and took a trip down memory lane to see what he had to say about the group's heyday.

Here we goooooooooooo!

1. Don’t worry what others think of you

Bass grew up in Mississippi and describes himself as an energetic, outgoing, crazy kid.

Looking back, the singer recalls knowing he was gay and realizing he'd have to keep it secret.

“When I was 5 years old, I knew I was gay,” Bass told “Good Morning America.” “I knew I’d have to hide it because it was wrong because that's what people kept telling me.”

If there’s one thing Bass would tell his childhood self it’d be not to worry about what others think of you.

“When I see pictures of myself at that age, I feel empathy for that kid because that was on his mind a lot,” he said.

“There’s nothing wrong with who you are. You can be and love whoever you want,” Bass added.

2. Don’t give up on your passion

Bass’ first boy band experience was in the fifth grade. He joined the barbershop quartet in Clinton, Mississippi.

From a young age, he was drawn to performing but never thought it was something that he could pursue.

“I always loved performing, but it was something I never felt I had a passion for because I didn’t know I was allowed to have a passion for it,” Bass explained. “My sister was always the one who got to do plays and do music, but as a boy, boys didn’t do that.”

He later realized that it was something he could do when a close friend of his joined show choir.

“I feel like myself when I’m performing,” Bass added. “On stage, I just feel like it was what I was born to do.”

3. Take time for yourself

In 1995, Bass’ life would change forever when he was asked to audition for the boy band NSYNC after another member had quit.

At the time, Bass was a junior in high school.

Two years later, the pop group would climb to world fame. With hits like “I Want You Back” and “Tearin’ Up My Heart,” NSYNC became an integral part of the millennium boy band craze.

“It was an exciting time to be a part of,” Bass said. “This was the first time that it felt like the pop fans were just going crazy for not just one group but for a whole genre of music.”

The rise of fame led to extensive tours throughout Europe and the United States. NSYNC would go on to win a host of MTV Music Video Awards, American Music Awards and more.

One particular outfit worn by the group was called “most waterproof" by Joan Rivers.

One of the many lessons he learned from his experience with the group is that a little rest and relaxation is required at times.

“You need to take time for yourself,” Bass explained. “You need to take those days off because you will be burnt out.”

4. Surround yourself with amazing people

Although NSYNC would disband in the early 2000s, the guys still remain incredibly close.

“These NSYNC boys are still some of my best friends. We talk daily, you know, we’re always on a group text,” Bass said.

Though busy schedules often prevent them all from being together at once, NSYNC reunited in 2018 to receive their star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

“The star ceremony was an incredible day because it had been a long time since all five of us had been together," Bass shared.

The star ceremony sparked smiles and nostalgia for not only the band but for the devoted NSYNC fans as well.

“We still revert to being 16 year olds. I feel like we really haven’t grown up," he said.

Reuniting with the fellow NSYNC members reminded Bass of having people around you who support you.

“Surround yourself with amazing people. These guys are like family to me. We will always support each other," he said.

5. Be yourself

As a member of one of the most famous boy bands in the world, Bass’ love life was often a popular topic of discussion.

In 2006, the singer came out publicly as gay on the cover of “People” magazine.

Although he knew at a young age that he was gay, Bass wouldn’t share it publicly while a part of NSYNC.

“It was a different time. You know, being gay was the death of your career,” Bass explained. “And in my case, it wasn’t just me solo. I had four of my best friends’ careers in my hands."

Today, Bass is happily married to his husband of five years, Michael Turchin, and the couple recently announced they will be expanding their family with the help of a surrogate.

“It’s amazing I am able to be who I am today. I look at this guy and say you do you. You be a good person. Be a fair person and everything will be just fine,” he said.

6.Always be aware

Bass may have been a teenager when signing on to NSYNC but the overnight success would force him to grow up quickly.

Perhaps one of the hardest experiences Bass endured was in 1999, when it was discovered that NSYNC’s manager, Lou Pearlman, who also managed The Backstreet Boys, was pocketing the group’s profits.

In his new documentary “The Boy Band Con,” Bass and other victims of Pearlman’s scheme tell the story from their perspective.

“He was our Papa Lou. We thought he was looking after us, but really, he was scamming us the whole time,” Bass said. “These kids have no idea that what they’re doing is a business and that they’re in charge of the business.”

Pearlman, who helped found NSYNC, formed a close relationship with the members and garnered their trust.

“You find out how easy it is for people to take advantage of you when you’re not paying attention,” Bass shared.

“The Boy Band Con” is available on YouTube Originals.

This story was originally published on April 12, 2019.