(NOTE: Music That Sucks is the correct opinion of the author. If you disagree then you have the wrong stuff.)
Welcome one and all to a landmark MTS, where for the first time we delve into the super faggy world of Boy Band pop. There have been a countless number of Boy Bands over the years, and these inductees were definately not the first. They are, however, significant to me personally. I have a sister who is very close in age to me, and she absolutely adored these jack-offs. It got to the point where I would beat her up whenever she put in one of the concert videos she had. It is with that in mind I give to you the story of the New Kids On The Block.
As with the vast majority of Boy Bands, the New Kids On The Block (NKOTB) story begins with a producer. Maurice Starr had previous success in the early 1980's with a group of black kids from the Boston area known as New Edition. That group would break away from Starr in 1983, which set him out on a mission to create another Boy Band, one that would eclipse their success. He went back to Beantown and set out to find the "cutest, most clean-cut" (i.e. gayest) kids that he could; this time they would be an all white group.
An add was put out in a newspaper with over 500 boys auditioning. The first two to make the cut where brothers Donnie and Mark Wahlberg, but younger Mark would soon get disinterested and leave. Brothers Jon and Jordan Knight, along with Donny Wood and Jamie Kelley, would round out Starr's vision of a vanilla New Edition. Depending on which source you tend to believe, Kelley was either pulled out of the group by his parents, or dismissed because of drinking and missing rehearsals. 12 year old Joey McIntyre would replace him, thus completing the famous NKOTB lineup.
As the five boys were learning the ins and outs of both sucky music geared towards prepubescent girls and "Greek love", they released the self-titled album in 1986 to a luke-warm reception. With the oldest members of NKOTB being all of 16, they got their first taste of failure. Starr pressed on, unfortunately, and in 1988 the group released their second album, 1988's Hangin' Tough. It was this album, along with the music videos that showed off their perfectly polished dance sequences and bad 1980's hair styles (rat tails, anyone?) that transformed NKOTB into a huge success. The group opened on tour for another 1980's nothing act, Tiffany, as their single "Please Don't Go Girl" made the Top Ten. Three more singles from the album, including the album's title track, "Cover Girl", "I'll Be Loving You (Forever)", and "You Got It (The Right Stuff)", also made the top ten. In fact, "Hangin' Tough" and "You Got It (The Right Stuff)" were both #1 singles. The album would go on to sell well over ten million copies, and NKOTB mania swept through the nation faster than the butt-plugs that such a mania required could be made. Everything from posters, videos, dolls, lunchboxes, keychains and more were made with their ultra-gay faces on it flooded the market as little girls all over the country bothered their parents to get the crap for them. Little girls all over were staring at Jordan while getting to know themselves a little better.
New Kids hysteria wasn't just confined to the US, in the UK the Super Fags scored 7 Top Ten hits in a row. The disease even extended to other acts as Jordan and Danny penned the #1 hit single "I'll Be Your Everything" for Tommy Page. It would be Page's only hit. After a double platinum Christmas album, NKOTB released Step By Step in 1990. This third studio album sold over three million copies, and the title track quickly reached the #1 spot. The end was near, however, as the number #1 rule for Boy Bands is: the gravy train stays on the rails for three years tops, after that you become old news. That's the problem when you market towards kids; they soon get older and outgrow what you are selling, and the new set of kids wants something different than what the previous set had. NKOTB also started getting in trouble with the law in more ways than one. Wahlberg was charged with, of all things, "verbal abuse' by a woman, and was later on arrested for attempted arson in Louisville, KY. On top of that, a former convict by the name of James Martorano claimed he owned 25% of NKOTB in exchange for helping financially during the groups early days. Jeffrey Furst claimed 50% ownership in exchange for lending Starr $50,000 in the beginning. Starr's assets were temporarily frozen with the charges pending (Starr won).
In December of 1990 the group was also sued by the charity group Kids On The Block" over ownership of the name. The judge ruled in favor of the Boy Band. Continuing the bad luck which I find hilarious, Jordan was charged with hitting a woman at an Atlanta nightclub. Why this woman didn't beat the living piss out of the bonafide pussy is way beyond me. While all of this was going on Donnie's younger brother Mark began his "rapping career" under the name "Marky Mark". He would score a top ten hit with "Good Vibrations", and later on a rap remake of Lou Reed's hit "Walk On The Wildside".
To try to drive home the point that they had supposedly matured along with their fans, New Kids On The Block officially changed their name to "NKOTB" in 1993. The following year they release an album called Face The Music, which is a huge bomb. Later on in '94, Jon leaves the group, which eventually disintegrates. The New Kid who came out of this whole clusterfuck unscathed was Mark Wahlberg, who was able to achieve success in modeling and acting.
So there you have it, the NKOTB story. The stories of these boy bands are as formulaic as their music, but rest assured there will be more inducted into MTS in the future. But for now I'm going to soak my ears in acid.
As for my sister, who like many NKOTB fans quickly outgrew them, I still cannot forgive you for the emotional scares left by this group. Fuck you, sis.
New Kids On The Block, music...that sucks!