As we millennials get older, it seems like we’re always finding out new facts about the things we loved as children. These facts tend to be pretty uncomfortable; just do a quick google for innuendo and sex jokes you may have missed in Disney movies. Now that you’ve recovered, get ready for another, err, juicy bit of information, this time involving music: the much-loved boy band the Backstreet Boys.
The Backstreet Boys’ debut album turns 20 this year (oh, how time passes). So Billboard interviewed all of the band’s five members for a very thorough oral history. And some very surprising stories came up.
But since the fart was on the beat and in the key of the song (how?), producer Max Martin decided to just turn it into a heavy bass sound. Because why not?
“You know what, there is one that I’m probably going to get in trouble for,” McLean said. “So when we were in the studio with Max making the song ‘The Call,’ Howie was in the booth and we were doing that vocal break down, [sings] ‘dun dun dun, dun dun dun dun.’ Max gave Howie his harmony. I think he was just putting so much air into the vocal that as he was singing. He went ‘dun, dun’ and he farted — but he farted not only on the beat, but in key. So Max tweaked it and made it sound like one of his patented bass sounds, and it stayed on the record.”
McLean also added that he admired Martin’s masterful mixing.
“[Max] could turn a fart into a bass sound, that’s pretty damn genius if you ask me.”
Take a listen to this major throwback, and see if you can figure out where the fart ended up!