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If you liked any 90s boy band it goes without saying you are NOT alone and you probably have a touch of the crazies. You lined up outside Tower Records for tickets to go on sale (this was before Ticketmaster), you created collages from pictures in Teen Beat for your High School 3 ring binder and you tried to memorize all the steps to “Bye Bye Bye” using a VHS tape. All our friends were also obsessed with the same 4 or 5 guys and yet we all held on to the delusion that somehow, a relationship with our favorite boy band-er was totally possible. Even when you lived in Nowhere, Nebraska. But hey, that’s normal RIGHT? Passion about pop music and the overly gelled dudes who sang it was totally a part of growing up in the 90s. You might have also spent a small fortune on concert tickets, merchandise at Hot Topic and spent all your afternoons taping TRL. Yes, TAPING, on a VHS but in the end it was totally worth it because we’ll always have those memories.
Now, when someone tells me their favorite 90s boy band is OTown or LFO or Backstreet, I know exactly who they are because of those experiences then… do you agree? Let’s see..
If your favorite band was OTown, clearly your parents didn’t love you enough. You were allowed to watch MTV unbidden and buy albums with songs about nocturnal emissions. I mean come on parents “liquid dreams?!” You’re the parents, not the friends. Your mom probably dropped you off at the mall the week before the OTown concert in your city so you could buy a new concert outfit (read new jean shorts, halter top and platform foam flip flops, natch) from Wet Seal. You grew up to be “one of the guys” who makes fart jokes and thinks a dude with three names is totally ok. You call Kesha your spirit animal. Ashley Parker Angel is either the name of your chihuahua or the names of your three future children you have after you stop partying so hard on week days.
If you liked 98 degrees you are probably now the mom of three living in the suburbs somewhere in America driving a Kia Sorrento. You never miss an episode of Dancing With the Stars and became personally invested, voting hundreds and hundreds of times, enlisting your begrudging husband and kids to vote as well, when Drew Lachey joined the cast. You still correct people when they pronounce “Lachey” wrong (You: “It’s La-shay” Everyone: “Who?”). You probably still refuse to buy Chicken of the Sea or anything from the Jessica Simpson fashion line, on principle.
You probably watched the Disney Channel as a young teen/adolescent a lot and/or were from the UK. You didn’t understand why your dad laughed when you told him your favorite member was Abz. Abz Breen (now Love) was a perfectly reasonable name for a young lad, right? That Disney Channel Concert special on VHS is gathering dust in a box at your parents house and you secretly wish you could rescue it along with your B*Witched and Spice Girls CDs. You are currently glued to your TV for the Big Reunion show on ITV2 because 5ive’s back together!!! If you live in and States and you are us, you are sad you don’t have ITV2 to see if Abz now has abs or a beer gut (spoiler: it’s the gut). WAH.
If you loved LFO, you know what LFO stands for: Lyte Funky Ones. And that it’s spelled “LYTE” not “light,” duh. You probably even now still get a little smile on your face when you walk by an Abercrombie and Fitch or order Chinese Food. Sadly, we don’t know much else about you since no one has ever met a real life LFO fan. RIP Rich.
If Hanson was your favorite 90s boy band then you’re still the biggest Hanson fan IN THE WORLD. No joke, you still listen to their music old and new, you go to their shows when they decide to tour every 5 years, you did that shoeless walk thing once or twice, you know the names of ALL of Taylor’s kids. And there’s a lot of them. If you’re a Hanson fan you’re a bit crunchy, fey boys with long hair still do it for you, you named that German Shepherd/Pit bull mix you rescued from the kill shelter, Penny and you probably have THIS tattooed on your body somewhere. Don’t lie.
If you even know who Plus One is then you were a Christian who was either home schooled, sang in your Youth group’s worship band and/or attended a Christian college and convinced your roommate to drive with you to every concert/state fair/winter teen retreat/Acquire the Fire conference in a tristate radius. Your closet probably still contains a cassette tape Performance Trax for “Soul Tattoo” (next to Rachael Lampa and Stacie Orrico, natch). You have the making of their Obvious (beginning of the end) album DVD, that purity book Jason wrote, and you probably sorta hated Joy Williams for dating Jason back then but a few years later were probably in the front row to hear that little band of hers, THE CIVIL WARS, play. You still know that hand motion from “Written On My Heart” and do it when the song plays on KLove in your mom’s car when you’re back home visiting. You are probably also named Bekah or Nikki.
If you loved the Backstreet Boys best you probably already have your tickets to the BSB/NKOTB/Boyz II Men reunion tour with your other five mom friends. You ladies are going to have a wild mom’s night out in which you take a Limo service to a Cheesecake Factory before the concert and get slippy slidey on one and a half Pinot Grigio’s then you and the moms will have a good drunken cry when the Boys perform “I Want It That Way.” One of your mom friends will complain so you’ll leave before the encore because everyone’s tired and wants to go home. You’re not used to staying up past 10:30. You also probably donate to that Brian Littrell Heart Disease Charity every year.
If your favorite 90s boy band was NSYNC, one summer in high school you got a part time job at your Dad’s office to pay for those front row tickets you bought from a ticket broker for their No Strings Attached Tour. Now, as an adult you have an unspoken understanding between you and your self/significant other/accountant that if NSYNC ever reunites you will be there come hell or second mortgage. You probably also were at the opening night for Social Network and stop to watch On The Line any time it’s on the premium channels (last week!) and tune into Lance’s radio show on Sirius called Dirty Pop (of course). You might have also learned HTML in high school and started a blog empire (heavy sarcasm here) as an adult because of NSYNC. Deep in the back of your childhood closet sits a dusty alter to the power of boy band merchandising including marionettes, bobble heads, tshirts, books, dvd’s and things you won’t even tell your therapist about.
I don’t know about you but I’m off to dig through my closet for those old 90s boy band CDs, Bobble heads and binders full of pictures and ticket stubs. Those were some good days!
Did we get it right? Do you know these girls? Which girl are you? Which boy band did we miss?