Make us your home page

Justin Timberlake sneaks out new single

Timberlake’s new release was No. 1 on iTunes on Monday.

Associated Press

Timberlake’s new release was No. 1 on iTunes on Monday.

Just call them "sneaky singles."

Last week, David Bowie, seemingly retired from the music biz for the past 10 years, dropped a new cut from out of the blue. Where Are We Now? showed up on iTunes in the wee hours of the Thin White Duke's 66th birthday.

Now actor Justin Timberlake, formerly of 'N Sync but pop-musically dormant since 2006's SexyBack attack, is playing the sneaky singles game. On Monday, JT released the '70s-slick retro roll Suit & Tie, featuring an obligatory rap from Jay-Z.

Produced by longtime collaborator Timbaland, a once-ubiquitous beatmaster who's making a comeback himself, Suit & Tie is apparently the first single from a 2013 Timberlake album (or something, he's being vague) called The 20/20 Experience.

In a short, funny letter to fans on, where you can also hear the new song for free, the 31-year-old writes, "Back in June of last year, I quietly started working on what is now my next journey with that thing I love called MUSIC."

A lil' tease, a lil' music.

And now, just like that, Suit & Tie is No. 1 on iTunes with absolutely zero promotion from Timberlake's RCA record label.

I'm digging this new trend. Where Are We Now? and Suit & Tie are totally refreshing products of both a singles-driven music industry and, more importantly, a lightning-fast social media landscape where a whole lot of attention can be garnered in a short amount of time.

All facets of social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) are buzzing about JT's song, primarily because it seemingly popped up out of nowhere. (Unlike Bowie's release, which was a straight-up, what-the-heck secret, Timberlake had been teasing his release a few days beforehand.)

Suit & Tie is nowhere near as catchy as SexyBack, but it's fun and sonically slick, with a slow, low head-nod preface then a rickety dance-floor tempo change. It's about style and clubs and hookups ("Stop, let me have a good look at it...") and absolutely nothing serious. Yep, it's good to have Mr. Sexy back.

Sean Daly can be reached at Follow @seandalypoplife on Twitter.

Justin Timberlake sneaks out new single 01/14/13 [Last modified: Monday, January 14, 2013 5:45pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Plan your weekend July 28-30: Comic Con, Lady Antebellum, Margarita Wars, Tampa's Fourth Friday


    Plan your weekend

    Geek out

    Tampa Bay Comic Con: The fan convention returns to the Tampa Convention Center this weekend, bringing actors Val Kilmer, Kate Beckinsale, Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek's Lt. Uhura), Khary Payton (Ezekiel in The Walking Dead) and the …

    Ibri Day poses for a photo at opening day of the 2015 Tampa Bay Comic Con at the Tampa Convention Center. (Friday, July 31, 2015.) [Photo Luis Santana | Times]
  2. Ticket window: Bucs, Michael Carbonaro, The Zombies

    Music & Concerts

    Tickets for the following events go on sale this week:

  3. Top things to do in Tampa Bay for July 27


    Clearwater Threshers: Kids 5 and older get their choice of red or blue fidget spinner. 7 p.m., Spectrum Field (formerly Bright House Field), 601 N Old Coachman Road, Clearwater. $6-$10. (727) 467-4457;

    A boy plays with a fidget spinner. (Associated Press)
  4. On the Camino de Santiago, Day 22: A rejuvenating visit to The House of the Gods (a.k.a. Pilgrim Paradise)


    Day 22: Hospital de Orbigo to Murias de Rechivaldo: 22.3 km, 6 hours. Total for Days 1-22 = 520 km (323 miles)

  5. Art Planner: Fashion superstars are on display at Tampa Museum of Art, and Fourth Friday offers up a ton of culture

    Visual Arts

    Susanne Bartsch: Art-a-Porter at the TMA

    NYC’s “Queen of the Night,” Susanne Bartsch,