Happiness Begins serves as sibling pop trio The Jonas Brothers' first album since 2009's Lines, Vines and Trying Times and is preceded by the runaway smash singles "Sucker" and "Cool." The road to new music for the Jonas Brothers began a little more than a year ago, with discussions about what form a reunion might take. But before those discussions could get too far, some healing was necessary. The trio announced a split in 2013, after four studio albums, two Disney TV movies, two seasons of a TV series, and non-stop touring had made them into a phenomenon that more often than not drowned out the music itself. But though all three agree good things have come from the split, there were still a lot of feelings to work through.
"We were having conversations we'd never really had," says Joe. Adds Nick, "We did a lot of healing as a family. Healing that was long overdue." All three brothers are quick to say that from the moment they picked up some acoustic guitars and sang together again, a feeling they'd missed for far too long instantly returned. "That's when everything became clear to us: how we were going to write songs, and what they were going to be about," says Kevin. "I think our fans will be surprised by how much joy we're bringing this time around," says Nick. "We don't want to take ourselves too seriously. We really want to have as much fun as we hope they have. We want that to reflect through our music. There is so much negativity in the world today, that I feel like if you have the opportunity to bottle up some happiness, that's an honor and privilege. That's what we want to do."
Lead single "Sucker" is a three-minute exploration of overwhelming devotion which rides a beat that's as stripped down as it is powerful, with the snap of live drums bringing a fresh perspective to the sophistication of modern pop. Produced by Ryan Tedder, with assistance from Frank Dukes, "Sucker" combines the groove-driven direction that Nick has pursued in his solo career with the band aesthetic his brother Joe has crafted with DNCE. "Joe's got a little more of a rock-funk sound to his thing, and I'm a little more soulful, R&B pop," says Nick. "When Ryan played us ‘Sucker' what really stood out to me was the beat, the overall production, and the blending of those different sounds."
That blend is a hallmark of the Jonas Brothers' approach in 2019. "We used to bicker about picking vocal parts," says Joe. "This time it's, ‘Whatever's going to sound the best.' We'll cut both vocals – I'll cut a full song, Nick will cut a full song – and then we'll put together sonically what we feel will sound the best."