"The genesis of the song came about at a very contentious time politically and socially," McCartney tells TooFab of his latest single, "Better With You."
Jesse McCartney was a teen heartthrob with catchy singles and a beautiful soul. Now 31, the singer-songwriter is ready to make his big return to music -- and his fans are, too.
McCartney debuted "Better With You" less than a month ago, and the video already has over 5.5 million views on YouTube. Not too shabby considering it's the singer's first single in 4 years.
"Timing is such a big part of releasing music, and I think that the song has a tone that is very uplifting and sort of touches on things that are current and topical," McCartney told TooFab of his latest track. "The genesis of the song came about at a very contentious time politically and socially, and I remember turning on the news and thinking, 'What is happening? The world is falling apart.' There was a lot of division in this country, so we just went in the studio and we wanted to simply write something that had a sentiment that was uplifting and positive."
Unlike many of his counterparts, McCartney did not spend his 20s starting a family, going to rehab, ending up in jail or participating in celebrity reality dating shows; he chose to enjoy the hard-earned money he spent his childhood and teenage years making by traveling the world.
"You work so hard and you put all this time and you put all this blood, sweat and tears into your career and then you make money to do it, and then what do you do with it, you know?" McCartney said. "So I decided I was just going to take some time and travel and really indulge in the things that I love outside of music."
And one of those things is food.
"Grilling has become my ultimate hobby in the last year or two," the singer explained, adding that he's watched "endless documentaries and YouTube videos" to perfect the craft.
But just because McCartney's been away from the forefront of music doesn't mean he's fallen behind. Currently at the top of his playlist is none other than the Queen of 2018, Cardi B.
"Cardi B is my jam right now," McCartney said. "I love that that woman has no fear whatsoever. She is 100 percent authentic and 100 percent her, and she is just so fun to watch."
"Beautiful Soul" is perhaps McCartney's biggest hit, and even though he's asked quite often by fans (and crazed TooFab reporters) to sing the 2004 smash, McCartney does so with a smile on his face.
"That was my debut record. That was the song that kind of put me on the map. You can't not play the song that kind of got you to where you are," the singer explained. "It's still one of those songs that when you perform [it], everyone goes nuts. You never get sick of it."
Watch McCartney's full interview above (a cappella rendition of "Beautiful Soul" included), and check out his new single, "Better With You" -- which he sang live in Studio TooFab -- in the exclusive performance below.