A beginner’s guide to @BackstreetBoys for new fans

So you’re a new Backstreet Boys fan? While the group has been around for almost 25 years, you have just seen the light and realized the greatness that is Kevin, AJ, Brian, Nick and Howie. Well, guess what? You’ve come to the right place for a quick and easy guide for new fans.

So how did you become a fan? Were you a casual fan in the ’90s? Did a friend drag you to a Florida Georgia Line or Backstreet Boys Vegas show and you saw Nick Carter ask if he was sexual and, of course, you said yes? That’s what happened to me in 1998.

So the first thing you need to know is … who are the Backstreet Boys?

The Backstreet Boys consist of five guys:

Kevin Richardson

Born Oct. 3, 1971 in Irvine, Kentucky. He moved to Orlando and worked at Disney World, where he met his wife, Kristin.  They have two sons, Mason and Maxwell. He took a break from the group for a few years to focus on acting.

Howie Dorough

Born Aug. 22, 1973 in Orlando, Florida. He attended college just before joining the Backstreet Boys. He is married to Leigh and they have two sons, James and Holden. He works a lot in real estate with his brother on the side. /td>

Brian Littrell

Born Feb. 20, 1975 in Lexington, Kentucky. He was called in the middle of school by his cousin Kevin to join the Backstreet Boys. He’s a Christian and is married to Leighanne who he met on the set of “As Long As You Love Me.” They have one son, Baylee.

AJ McLean

Born Jan. 9, 1978 in West Palm Beach, Florida. He was always known as the bad boy in the group. He is married to Rochelle and they have two daughters, Ava Jaynes and Lyric Dean. He was the official first Backstreet Boys.

Nick Carter

Born Jan. 28, 1980 in Jamestown, New York, but grew up in Tampa, Florida. He has released several solo albums, wrote and directed a movie (“Dead 7”) and almost won “Dancing with the Stars.” He is married to Lauren and they have a son, Odin Reign.

Where did they start?

AJ, Howie and Nick all knew each other from the acting circuit in Orlando all while Kevin worked at Walt Disney World. The four answered a newspaper advertisement to form a boy band by the late Lou Pearlman. The four were picked by Lou, but Kevin called his cousin Brian, who was sitting in history call, on April 20, 1993. Brian flew to Orlando the next day and the rest is history.
So that’s a very important date – April 20, 1993. Remember that. There might be a test.

Did Backstreet Boys come before ‘N Sync?

Yes, absolutely. While the Backstreet Boys were busy touring and releasing music in Europe, Lou Pearlman helped form ‘N Sync behind the Backstreet Boys back. Then anything the Backstreet Boys turned down, Lou would give ‘N Sync the opportunity. That happened with the 1998 Disney Special that put ‘N Sync on the map in the U.S. The Backstreet Boys were offered the special, but with Brian Littrell having open heart surgery after the 1998 Grad Nite concerts at Walt Disney World and before their U.S. tour, they passed.

Albums in order of sequence:

Backstreet Boys (1996)

Known as the red album and only released in Europe and then Canada. Basically, almost everywhere besides the U.S.

Backstreet’s Back (1997)

The boys’ second worldwide release.

Backstreet Boys (1997)

The boys’ first U.S. released which included songs that were on their first European album, “Backstreet Boys,” and “Backstreet’s Back.” Sold over 24 million copies worldwide.

Millennium (1999)

Sold over 24 million copies worldwide and holds the record for most shipments in one year with 11 million (1999).

 Black & Blue (2000)

Sold over 1.6 million copies in it’s first week of release. Has sold over 24 million copies worldwide.

Chapter One: Greatest Hits (2001)

Featured the hits, plus a new song, “Drowning.”

Never Gone (2005)

Last album to feature Kevin Richardson before his break. Debuted at No. 3 on the charts.

Unbreakable (2007)

First album without Kevin Richardson. It has sold over 1.5 million copies worldwide.

This Is Us (2009)

Debuted at No. 9 on the Billboard 200.

In a World Like This (2013)

First album back with Kevin Richardson and on first on their label, K-BAHN. The album has sold over 800,000 copies worldwide and debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard 200.

Album Sales

The Backstreet Boys, as of 2015, have sold more than 130 million albums worldwide, making them the best-selling boy band of all-time and one of the biggest selling artists in history. They are the first group since Sade to have their first nine albums reach the top 10 on the Billboard 200, and the only boy band to do so.

As the top-selling boy band of all time, The Jackson 5 comes in second with 100 million albums sold, New Kids on the Block with 80 million sold, The Osmands with 77 million and the Bay City Rollers with 70 million.

Documentary

“From 1999 to about 2002 we were the biggest band in the world. No one thought it was going to be as big as it was, then it just stopped. And what do you do when you’re a full-grown man in a boy band?” – Brian Littrell

If you are a new fan, the first thing you should do before even reading this blog post is watch their documentary, “Show ‘Em What You’re Made Of,” which came out in 2015. It was shot over the span of two years, including footage of the band traveling to each of their hometowns, recording for the first time with Kevin in eight years and living in London for a few weeks.

It also has a lot of old footage and the guys discuss their start in the business and along with the visits to their hometowns, you learn more about where each guy came from.

Along with recording their new album recording and writing for their new album, and the upcoming world tour, the documentary goes into detail about something most Backstreet Boys fans have noticed the past few years – Brian’s voice. He suffers from vocal cord dysphonia and dystonia, which is a neurological problem.

Las Vegas

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, or maybe this is where you were introduced to the five amazing guys that make up the band, the Backstreet Boys have signed with Planet Hollywood to perform at the Axis Theatre, the same place that Britney Spears has been playing the past few years.

The group started in the spring with a set of dates and a few this summer. They closed out 2017’s dates on Nov. 18 and more have been announced for January / February. Will more be added? Most likely. Britney Spears has ended her partnership with Planet Hollywood after her last shows so it could be a sign the boys will be the main headlining at the venue.

There’s a Backstreet Boys cruise?

The Backstreet Boys went on their first cruise in 2010 and have followed suit in 2011, 2013, 2014, 2016 and will have one, celebrating their 25th anniversary, the first week of May 2018. The boys partner with a company called Rose Tours who handles cruises for fellow boy banders, New Kids on the Block.

On the cruises you get to mingle with other fans and the boys themselves. There are game shows and other events such as karaoke, beach parties and the big highlight, the deck parties where there is usually a theme each night.

Some of the cruise themes the Backstreet Boys have used in the past are Neon Night, Prom Night, 50 Shades of Grey, Casino Royale, ABC (Anything But Clothes), Halloween, Spynkter (80’s) and Bachelorette night.

The CNNs of Backstreet Land

While back in the day (1998-2004), there were a ton of Backstreet Boys sites. The main one, Backstreet.net, was updated hourly, but since then, fans have gotten real jobs and do it as a hobby. There are a few of us that try to keep things going and also write for the official fan club.

Here is a list of several fan sites where you can get fun content and the latest news:

Official

The Backstreet Boys have a great fan club and I’m not just saying that because I write stuff for the website and help monitor things. They have a great team behind them with a company called Wonderful Union and have one of the best staffs that I’ve seen working with artists.  There are several different fan club packages you can get and they usually switch i tup every other year.

Important Dates

Remember when I said to remember April 20, 1993? This is why – it is probably the most important date in Backstreet Boys history. It’s the day that changed everything. But there are some other important dates in the BSB fandom.

  • October 7 – Official Backstreet Boys Day in Orlando. (The day they received the keys to the city in 1998)
  • May 5, 1993 – The Backstreet Boys perform their first show at Sea World.
  • May 18, 1999 – “Millennium” was released.
  • June 6, 2006 – The day Kevin Richardson announced he was leaving the group.
  • November 21, 2000 – “Black & Blue” was released.
  • April 29, 2013 – Announcement during the London NKOTBSB tour that Kevin was coming back to the group.

So new Backstreet Boys fans, I hope this post helps you learn a little bit more about the fandom and the group itself. Got a question about the boys? You can always #AskTheFangirl and I will answer in a post on the site.

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