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AJ McLean
AJ McLean.png
Biographical information
Full name

Alexander James McLean


January 9, 1978


West Palm Beach, Florida

Career information

   Voice actor





The Lion Guard

I've been doing voices since before I could even walk. I'm almost forty, and I still watch cartoons on my own time. Now, especially, being a father, I know everything about every Disney princess you would ever want to know.
―McLean on voice acting[1]

AJ McLean is an American actor, dancer, model, singer, songwriter, and voice actor. He voiced Kuchimba in The Lion Guard.


Early life

McLean was born on January 9, 1978, in West Palm Beach, Florida, to Bob and Denise McLean. He was named for his father's grandfather, Alexander. When he was around two years old, his mother gave birth to stillborn twin girls. His parents divorced a few months later, leaving him to be raised by his mother and maternal grandparents, Adolph and Ursula.[2]

From a young age, McLean showed an interest in acting, dancing, and singing. At age six, he auditioned for a part in A Christmas Carol at a local children's theater and made such an impression on the director that a new part was written into the play specifically for him. McLean's theater performances caught the attention of talent agent Richard Lustig, who allowed McLean to perform in shows at local bars and nightclubs.[2]

McLean's first professional theatrical production was The King and I at the Burt Reynolds Dinner Theater. He spent the next few years pursuing a career in the performing arts.[2]


McLean landed his first on-screen role as young Mike Strauber in the 1986 film Truth or Dare? In 1991, he played Sidney "Skunk" Duff in the Nickelodeon comedy series Hi Honey, I'm Home! However, he was cut from the series due to being too tall and only appeared in the pilot episode, which aired in 1999 as part of Nickelodeon's "Nick Knew Them When" anniversary marathon.[3]

McLean met future bandmates, Nick Carter and Howie Dorough, through auditions for local commercials, television, and theater. At one such audition, the three realized they could harmonize well together and decided to form a vocal trio. Shortly thereafter, Kevin Richardson met the three through a co-worker, and the four formed a group. Brian Littrell was the last member to join, thereby turning the group into a quintet.[4]

McLean records a voice-over for The Lion Guard

In 1992, Lou Pearlman placed an advertisement in the Orlando Sentinel for an audition seeking adolescent male vocalists. McLean auditioned and was accepted as the first official member of the group. Carter, Dorough, Littrell, and Richardson were selected over the following year. Pearlman named the group the "Backstreet Boys" for a flea market in Orlando, Florida. The group was especially popular in the late 1990s to early 2000s.[5]

For the Disney Junior television series The Lion Guard, McLean voiced Kuchimba, a golden mole. McLean's longtime friend, series composer Beau Black, specifically wrote Kuchimba's song to match McLean's singing voice.[1]

Personal life

On December 17, 2011, McLean married Rochelle Deanna Karidis in Beverly Hills, California.[6] On November 27, 2012, the couple welcomed their first child, a daughter named Ava Jaymes.[7] Their second child, a daughter named Lyric Dean, was born on March 19, 2017.[8]

External links


  1. 1.0 1.1 Rania Aniftos (May 10, 2017). AJ McLean Talks His New Role on Disney's 'The Lion Guard' and Backstreet Boys' New Album. Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved on November 25, 2017.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Denise McLean; Nicole Gotlin (November 10, 2003). Backstreet Mom: A Mother's Tale of Backstreet Boy AJ McLean's Rise to Fame, Struggle With Addiction and Ultimate Triumph. Dallas, Texas: BenBella Books. ISBN 1932100156. Retrieved on March 6, 2020.
  3. A.J. McLean. IMDb. Amazon. Retrieved on March 9, 2020.
  4. Backstreet Boys Biography. Starpulse. All Media Guide. Archived from the original on August 20, 2009. Retrieved on March 9, 2020.
  5. Bryan Burrough (October 3, 2007). Mad About the Boys. Vanity Fair. Condé Nast. Retrieved on March 9, 2020.
  6. Daily Mail Reporter (December 19, 2011). The One! Backstreet Boys star AJ McLean marries model girlfriend in Beverly Hills ceremony. Daily Mail. DMG Media. Retrieved on December 16, 2017.
  7. In Touch Staff (February 5, 2014). Rep Confirms: Backstreet Boys Singer AJ McLean Welcomes Baby Girl Ava!. In Touch Weekly. American Media. Retrieved on December 16, 2017.
  8. Jen Juneau (March 20, 2017). A.J. McLean Welcomes Daughter Lyric Dean. People. Meredith Corporation. Retrieved on December 16, 2017.
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