Woman’s Day (New Zealand)

Vince & wife Abby ‘WE’RE TOGETHER 24 /7!’

The Popstars panellist and his partner in life are totally in tune as par ents and songwriter­s

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Not many people can say they have the Backstreet Boys to thank for their marriage, but Popstars panellist Vince Harder and his wife Abby Lee credit the boy band for their six years of wedded bliss.

It was backstage at the ’90s group’s comeback concert in Auckland in 2010 where R&B singer and producer Vince first met backup dancer Abby – and when they locked eyes with each other, the rest was history.

“Well, I was a bit nervous to get involved with him at first,” admits 34-year-old Abby, now a singer-songwriter. “I mean, he was Vince Harder, the artist. But then I realised how cool he was.”

“I just started to turn up to some of her dance gigs,” laughs Vince, 38. “Then we hung out and even created some music together. I made her sing in the car for me – actually, that might have been my first judging experience!”

Clearly the hit-maker knows how to spot a star, and that skill sure will come in handy as he sits alongside Grammy winner Kimbra and Zed rocker Nathan King on the panel of TVNZ 2’s reboot of reality juggernaut Popstars.

However, after spending just a few minutes with Vince, Woman’s Day can’t help but think he’s too nice to be a judge – an opinion Abby shares!

“He’ll be quite soft,” she tells us ahead of the show’s launch. “But he’ll obviously be able to put the hard word on someone when he needs to – and they’ll all be able to do that in a way that’s not soul-destroying for the contestant­s. That’s not what New Zealand’s about.”

Although this is Vince’s first stint as a reality talent scout, he’s pretty much done everything else – from appearing on The X Factor Australia, where he finished in the top three, to performing on stage as Simba in The Lion King. Oh, and you may remember his vocals on that

really catchy song you couldn’t escape in 2008, Everything,a collaborat­ion with P-Money.

These days, he’s producing up-and-coming Kiwi stars and making music with Abby, as well as being a dad to their son Jaxon, four, and daughter Presley, two, plus his older girls from a previous relationsh­ip, Cadence, 16, and Yunique, 14.

“Jaxon’s full-on and he can sing on pitch already,” Vince says proudly. “And his drumming’s pretty good

– he has the natural

 ??  ?? Above: Vince and Abby with their little pop stars Jaxon (top) and Presley.
Above: Vince and Abby with their little pop stars Jaxon (top) and Presley.
 ??  ?? The right moves! A smitten Vince started turning up at single Abby’s dance gigs.
The right moves! A smitten Vince started turning up at single Abby’s dance gigs.

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