O-Town boy band members decided to return from a hiatus – without the direction of mogul Lou Pearlman – and landed a new, successful career that continues in 2020.
All but one of the members, Ashley Parker Angel, reconnected to form the group, OTWN.
Pearlman was convicted of fraud for swindling millions of dollars from thousands of investors, many of whom were retirees living in Florida, according to court documents filed in his case. Pearlman died in federal prison at the age of 62.
The story of the fraud aired in a two-hour special of 20/20 Friday, December 13, 2019 in its episode, “The Hitman: From Pop to Prison.” The episode is airing again tonight, Friday July 3, 2020, at 9 p.m. on ABC.
Here’s what you need to know:
O-Town Returned from a Lengthy Hiatus & Is Still Touring in 2020
Four of the original five O-Town band members – Jacob Underwood, Erik-Michael Estrada, Trevor Penick, Dan Miller – rejoined in 2013 after many discussions about relaunching. They decided to make a comeback in 2013, sans Ashley Parker Angel. They kept in touch over the years and frequently talked about making a comeback until they formed OTWN seven years ago.
“It got to the point, at the 10 years mark, where everybody was going, ‘We need to do this … we talk about it every year,” Underwood told The Washington Post.
Many of the band members have families now, but Underwood told the newspaper they have found a balance between their home lives and their careers.
“I don’t see an end in sight,” Underwood told The Washington Post. “We’ve got to a point where we can all juggle life and family … when we started touring again, we never thought six years later we’d still be doing it.”
Jacob Underwood was married to Janie Underwood in 2002, but the couple later divorced. He went onto propose to Chandler Bay in 2018, and they have one child together.
He told PEOPLE in 2019 “words can’t describe” his love for his daughter, Everest.
Ashley Parker Angel Did Not Rejoin O-Town Because of Bad Timing
While returning after a 10-year hiatus was good timing for most of the O-Town members, the timing just didn’t work out for Ashley Parker Angel, Jacob Underwood told MTV. He said they had no hard feelings about Angel’s decision not to rejoin.
“We are not angry. He just didn’t want to do it right now. And the fans, because we had started this about two years ago, and they had been asking. We kind of felt like now was the good time,” Underwood said.
Underwood told The Washington Post they have found their groove without Angel.
“It would be weird to have him in the band now, we’ve worked in such a unique way over the last six years,” Underwood said. “Of course we still have a soft place in our heart for him,” he said.
Angel went onto perform on Broadway. Angel has a son, Lyric, with ex-girlfriend Tiffany Lynn Rowe. In 2018, he suffered a serious back injury while working on the musical, “Wicked,” according to TMZ. He lost his role on “Wicked,” and was unable to work.