“There’s a party goin’ on in the Garden tonight!” Justin Timberlake announced Thursday night.
And indeed there was: Turning 38, the pop superstar threw himself a pretty big birthday bash surrounded by “20,000 friends” at Madison Square Garden.
Timberlake turned this concert on his “Man of the Woods” tour into his own personal celebration. “It’s a special night tonight,” he said midway through the sold-out show. “I don’t know how it worked out this way, but I couldn’t think or dream of doing what I love most in the world with 20,000 friends at the Garden on my 38th birthday. Thank you, New York City.”
Then the entire arena serenaded Timberlake with “Happy Birthday” before he offered his own toast: “I love you so much, New York. Thank you for having us. I may be old but f—k it — I am not done yet. So cheers!”
And after knocking back a shot with his band, the Tennessee Kids, at the center of a stage that went the entire length of the Garden, Timberlake promptly launched into “Drink You Away.”
It was Timberlake’s third attempt at playing this show at the Garden. The concert was originally supposed to take place last March but was canceled due to a Nor’easter. Then the rescheduled date last October had to be postponed too after the singer severely bruised his vocal cords.
But the third time was the charm for Timberlake on Thursday night. “First of all, I’m sorry,” he said, apologizing for the postponements. “Second of all, thank you so f—king much for coming back tonight.”
The crowd seemed to think it was worth the wait, as Timberlake broke out hit after hit, from “SexyBack,” “Suit & Tie” and “My Love” to “Mirrors,” “Rock Your Body” and “Can’t Stop the Feeling!”
And although he was rocking a black leather motorcycle jacket with Memphis emblazoned on the back in honor of his hometown, Timberlake declared that New York was “the greatest city in the world.”
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