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The Boy Bands.

I realize that this is a sports blog, but I got into a heated argument about boy bands today and wanted to address them. Growing up in the 80’s-90’s, I LIVED in THE boy band era. Now sure, some people might argue that the Jackson 5 or The Monkees were a “boy band”, but that is not the definition we are going with. You ALL know what comes to mind when you hear that word. So, in order to do it right, I am going to rank the greatest boy bands of all time, in countdown style. Now, there are different “kinds” of boy bands, but we are excluding the “R&B” bands that might qualify, like Boyz II Men or All 4 One. I don’t think they fit the mold. (Feel free to argue this this list, comments welcome):

#11: 5ive- Uh, you may remember the song “When The Light’s Go Out”. If not, consider yourself lucky. They are only on this list because, well, they were an actual boy band. An awful one. They were signed by THE Simon Cowell, but that is about it. Here is their ONE “hit” in America.

#10: Menudo- Puerto Rico is known for three things, beaches, baseball and boy bands. I think they had a total of 57 members throughout their reign, but none more famous than Ricky Martin. Didn’t he frequent boyzone as well? hey now!

#9: 2Gether- Yes! A FAKE boy band. Made up for a movie and t.v. series, they did have some awesome songs, actually better than most of these bottom bands on this list. “I Know My Calculus” is a legit song, and “Before We Say Goodbye” is a definite tear jerker. I think the lead singer now works for CMT and had a stint on HGTV designing homes or something.

#8: O-Town- Oh man is more like it. This band was formed from the MTV show “Making the Band”. Yeah, it showed. They were cheesy as hell, but had one song that really stood out. “All or Nothing”. Actually, my roommates and I covered this song for our single. Haha, long story. Also had a song called “Liquid Dreams” that just DOESN’T sound right. I refuse to listen to it.

#7: Boyzone- Sounds like a gay club. Just saying. If you watch their videos, you may even get that vibe. Just kidding. They are VERY cheesy, a lot like the early European boy bands. Not many of their songs made their way to the US, but they did spur the career of Ronan Keating. “No Mater What” and “Words” were both hits in Europe. “Love You Anyway” was released when all members seemed to be in their 40’s.

#6: Take That- Another English group, who had a HUGE hit with “Back For Good”. I bet most of you can sing it RIGHT NOW. Not only were they fairly popular for a while, they also launched the solo career of bad boy Robbie Williams. He was popular for a while too. I think. Here is the one you know.

#5: New Edition- Controversial? Not really. They were definitely an early boy band that wasn’t “too” R&B” ish. Don’t even try to include Boyz II Men on this list, they are R&B. Anyway, New Edition is way more famous for the members of the band instead of the music. Bobby Brown went on to become a HUGE star in the 80’s in his solo career, and Bell, Biv Devoe had some success as well. Don’t forget Johnny Gill and Ralph Tresvant. Their hits included songs like “Mr Telephone Man”, “Candy Girl” and “Cool It Now”. The #4 ranking is for their music, but also because of the careers that blossomed because of the group.

#4: 98 Degrees- What can I say? While they got a lot of pub because of Nick Lachey, I actually enjoyed some of their songs as a band. How could you not love “I Do, Cherish You”? Haha, a wedding favorite. They were also one of the only boy bands who had a legit bass guy. You can’t beat that! Their first real “hit” was “Invisible Man”, which sounded more like a stalking song. Hmm. Oh, and these guys would totally win a fight with other boy bands. Definitely a boy band that was over shadowed by the Big 2 of the 90’s, but still successful. Some of their other hit songs include: “The Hardest Thing”, “Because of You”, “My Everything”

#3: The New Kids on the Block- Well, really reaching “back” for this one. If you grew up in the 80’s, you didn’t make it through without hearing one of their songs on the radio. I remember girls in my junior high and elementary school freaking OUT about these guys. Not only were they huge in the early years of boy bands, they are still around singing in their 50’s (apparently) to a new generation of fans, or maybe the same ones. Not sure. There are a LOT of hits you can choose from, but one of my faves was “I’ll Be Loving You Forever”. Haha, what falsetto greatness that song is. Of course they had more hits, including: “Hangin Tough”, “Please Don’t Go Girl”, “You Got It (The Right Stuff)”, “Step By Step” and maybe the worst song ever “Tonight”. Awful.

#2: *NSYNC- Hmm, they were great, but not the best. While they had MAJOR hits all over the world, I don’t want to give them the top spot. They were definitely the more “up beat” song kind of band. “Bye Bye Bye” might be one of the greatest pop songs of all time, and “It’s Gonna Be Me” was memorable for a cool video. Going back and listening to their songs makes you realize how much Timberlake stands out with the group. They did have some great slow songs as well, including “God Must Have Spent”, “Drive Myself Crazy” and “This I Promise You”. I do believe that NSYNC was the more talented vocal group, especially if compared to BSB. With that being said, they were a great boy band, but just a HAIR behind one other group.
(One of THE top pop videos of ALL TIME)

#1: Backstreet Boys- THE #1 boy band of all time. While you can argue with my opinion, you can’t argue with the facts. They are one of the top selling groups of all time and have the hits to prove it. Even though their first album wasn’t huge, it produced the ballad “I’ll Never Break Your Heart”, a song many a junior higher sang to their loves during school dances. Their biggest hit was also one of THE biggest pop songs ever, “I Want It That Way”. Other hit songs include: “Backstreets Back”, “Larger Than Life”, “Show Me The Meaning of Being Lonely”, “Shape of My Heart”, “The Call”, “As Long As You Love Me”. The group has still been releasing songs to this day, but without Kevin Richardson an original member. Oh, and they have tried to take over the world by joining forces with this lists #3 boy band, NKOTB. I think they new name is NKOTBBSB or somesuch, which is ridiculous.

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