Backstreet Boys are celebrating their 20th anniversary on April 20th.. WOW! I just can’t help but feel so proud of them! Not because I am a die-hard fan, and not because they make the best music, but because of something more. I feel compelled to share with you why I chose to stay loyal and why I never gave up on the “Boy Band” that formed in 1993 in Orlando, Florida.
I became a Backstreet Boys fan since first grade. I remember singing “Quit Playing Games” and “Get Down” with my friends. They were the first artist I officially became a fan of. BSB was THE thing! They were all over the radio, teachers played their songs in gym class and everything was just so catchy. However, I only got to notice them individually when I got their album “Millennium” in 1999. I really like Brian and Kevin right off the bat. I did not like Nick’s hairstyle. I thought Howie was the least charming. And A.J was too bad-ass. 5 boys were so different from each other. I started to wonder if they got along in real life. At the time, there were other rival groups, such as N’SYNC and 98 Degrees. But after a few album releases, they completely disappeared. Justin Timberlake went solo, but what happened to the rest of N’SYNC? In my opinion, they were more vocally talented than BSB; their harmonies were flawless. So what went wrong with them? By the time BSB released their album “Black and Blue” in 2000, and after their compilation album in 2001, I didn’t hear from them for a long time… Then many drama surfaced in the media. AJ developed drugs and alcohol addiction and the boys were considering breaking up. Nick went to do a solo album. Brian released a Christian album and Howie looked into investments. I thought that was it. BSB is over, just like every other 90s boy band. But as it turns out, AJ appeared on an Oprah Winfrey show to reveal how Kevin pulled him out of his addiction and never giving up on him. Kevin, Nick, Brian and Hoiw surprised AJ at the interview to show support. It was the first time in 2 years that entire BSB appeared in public all together. They hugged, they cried, and they told AJ how proud they were of him. For me, that was the first time I really saw their friendship and it was a powerful sight. Not many groups are so true to each other. No homo — just bromance!
In 2006, Kevin announced that he would depart to pursue other interests. I was really saddened to hear this because the band is now incomplete! BSB continued without him, but I was glad to hear that they never intend to replace him. They turned down offers from reality shows to find a new member (including former N’SYNC members — so they are still around!). They kept the door opened for Kevin. Just recently in 2012, he officially re-joined them and the group was finally reunited. This is an example of a team where their brotherhood is stronger than music. Looking back, they have come a long, long way and I’m very happy to see them all grown up to become real men. Men that encourage and respect each other, learn from their mistakes and build each other up, never leaving a member behind. I am a proud fan and I love everything they do! They fully deserve their star on the Hollywood’s Walk of Fame. Just look at them now. Unbreakable!