Justin Timberlake certainly was seriously about this National 901 Day he kept tweeting about, appearing on stage at New York’s Irving Plaza on Thursday night in celebration of his own pseudo-holiday. While the live event was in promotion of Memphis group FreeSol, their old mentor JT couldn’t help but head towards the microphone at a certain point in the night to sing some of his own songs—not that we’re complaining. Guess the draw of the crowd was too much to resist? Timberlake performed an acoustic version of “Cry Me A River,” quickly turning the scorned midtempo ballad into a participatory singalong, with the excited crowd hanging on his every word, ready pick up the slack (say it with us: “don’t act like you don’t know it”). It’s been awhile since we’ve seen JT revisit his own stuff, and while Justified still gets plenty of plays on our iPod, we were curious to see how the live versions hold up today. High notes? Check. Hormonal screams from a mid-20s to early 30s N’SYNC fans? Check, check, check. Hopefully the bouncers were guarding the dressing room doors. That makes two live performances in one week. After three, feel free to start pushing the rumors about a new album. Watch below, and enjoy the added bonus of a salty lyrical change to “Like I Love You.”
So if (fake) holidays are really all it takes to get JT back on the microphone, we’re expecting big things for Labor Day, Grandparents Day and beyond.