Cue The Memes: It's Gonna Be May


Guess what? It's gonna be May.

With so many of us feeling as though time means nothing anymore, what was once the second-most tiresome May-related meme (after those “May the 4th Be With You” ones coming on Tuesday) comes as a helpful reminder that a new month is upon us.

“It’s Gonna Be May” memes have been ubiquitous on the last day of April since 2012, when a Tumblr user singled out Justin Timberlake’s southern enunciation of “me” on the 2000 *NSYNC hit “It’s Gonna Be Me.”

In 2016, Timberlake blamed the song's producer. "Max Martin made me sing ‘me’ that way,” he told a British radio station. “I think he just wanted me to sound like I was from Tennessee.”

*NSYNC's Chris Kirkpatrick told Variety: "I remember when we were recording the song, Max Martin kept telling Justin to sing it more ‘may’ instead of ‘me,’ and then it just became May. When it was over, I remember even Justin saying, ‘Man, that sounds ‘May’ more than ‘me,’ but it didn’t really catch on until someone made that meme."

Appearing on Good Morning America in 2019, JT’s fellow *NSYNCer Lance Bass celebrated the enduring popularity of the meme. “When we recorded that song there was no social media so we had no idea this would happen,” he pointed out.

“We never really thought about the way Justin pronounced ‘me’ before, until this meme started going around.”

Timberlake has embraced this little bit of pop culture by tweeting about it for the past few years. Afterall, “It’s Gonna Be May” has been good for business. According to YouTube, the song's video gets surge in views every year around April 30. (JT utters the phrase around the 1:00 mark.)

This is an updated version of an article originally published in 2020.

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