It's been 12 years since Justin Timberlake left his popular boyband NSYNC to focus on his solo career. Now, he explained his much-criticized decision to part ways with bandmates Joey Fatone, JC Chasez, Lance Bass and Chris Kirkpatrick.
"I would wake up every morning feeling this more and more of an urge to step out on my own," he said during the Sunday, May 11, season premiere of "Oprah's Master Class". The pop/R&B superstar then added that his choice drew many backlash.
"It was happening all around me: 'Why wouldn't you ride this out? You're the biggest group in the world. Why would you walk away from this?' " he recalled how people reacted to the fact that he wanted to leave the successful group which sold multi-million copies of albums.
"It's one of the best/worst things that I have ever done," Timberlake explained. "It was bittersweet. It was hard to say goodbye to that era, but I felt it changing. I felt music changing. And I felt myself changing."
After NSYNC announced their hiatus in 2002, Timberlake began working on his solo music. He put out the Grammy Award-winning "Justified" and the 2006 album "FutureSex/LoveSounds". He also worked on several movies before returning to music and releasing his 2013 double album, "The 20/20 Experience - The Complete Experience".