With every successful endeavor comes various forms of copycats, and the boy band craze is no exception. Following the Beatles, the Monkees, Jackson 5 and so on, crops of well-groomed and coordinated musical males have been floating for years hoping to emulate some of the success—and reap the benefits of bra-throwing—be it within the Christian music circuit or the U.S. State Department’s offices abroad. Over the course of Boy Band Week we’ve heralded everyone from NKOTB to The Wanted. Now, it’s time to highlight the more obscure groups of musical men in need of a little recognition.
They might balk at the term—then again, even boy bands don’t like calling themselves boy bands—but in a crop of singing and dancing performers, these are the slightly left of center groups you may not have known about.
The possibly legit, probable parody group emerged last fall with alleged ties to ‘N Sync’s Lance Bass, and “Facebook Official,” a dance-heavy ode to social networking that will probably become outdated in a few years.
THE COMPANY MEN
Not to be confused with the Ben Affleck movie, these four suave performers have been lauded as the world’s “first mashup band,” growing to popularity by blending cool choruses of the ’60s and ’70s with today’s most popular Top 40 hits, all while making women swoon with their steely gazes and well-tailored suits.
HARRY AND THE POTTERS
At some point in the near future J.K. Rowling will be approached about lending her beloved characters to the stage. These guys should be approached to pen the score.
THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA
Many a boy band member has harbored hard rock preferences (cough Nick Carter cough), and this Christian-metalcore quintet brings those to light while also maintaining a level of purity. Think Jonas Brothers meets Metallica.
AND HOW COULD WE FORGET THE JOKESTERS WHO LIKE TO MAKE FUN OF IT ALL
Perhaps not the original, but definitely the most beloved. MTV’s 2000 television movie aired during the height of TRL, Timberlake curls and teenage girls fainting at every turn, and resulted in two albums and a TV series. Treat your ears and eyes to their greatest hits (“U + Me = Us (Calculus),” “Say It (Don’t Spray It),” “Rub One Out,” “The Hardest Part of Breaking Up (Is Getting Back Your Stuff)”) and keep hope alive that they’ll actually make good on those reunion plans. RIP QT.
7 DEGREES CELSIUS
Never ones to overlook a pop cultural development ripe with parody potential, the minds at Saturday Night Live found ample material in ’90s boy bands. Jimmy Fallon, Chris Kattan, Horatio Sanz, Chris Parnell and a rotating cast of special guests interpreted the hot musical trend by portraying the various stereotypical members (The Shy One, The Rebellious One, The Sensitive One) making good one Chris Kirkpatrick’s iconic hair.
Picking up on the presence of purity rings and abstinence pledges in pop music, Kevin Del Aguila, Gary Adler and Michael Patrick Walker’s long-running musical centered around a Christian boy band—Matthew, Mark, Luke, Juan and, er, Abraham—performing their final performance on an epic world tour.
The 2009 Jeremy Piven film, The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard was perhaps saved only by its muscular trio who understand the importance of hands-free microphones. Pay no attention to Ed Helms’ pit stains. No, no, these guys are working their butts off to take advantage of every inch of available space their car dealership has to spare, while following their dreams at the same time.
Matthew Morrison’s high school teacher Mr. Schuester has always dreamed of being a performer himself, instead of spewing stale inspirational jargon at apathetic teens and over doing it on hair gel. Glee‘s first season introduced us to his long-standing dream, as well as to a cross-generational collection of crooning fellows itching to share their interpretation of Color Me Badd with the world.
Hey, Bubba Watson! We know him! In 2011, PGA players Watson, Ben Crane, Rickie Fowler and Hunter Mahan teamed up to prove that they aren’t just athletes with a one-track mind, who only wear polo shirts. It’s easy to forget that this is all a joke; “Oh Oh Oh” is legitimately catchy, and eventual Masters winner Watson was wise enough to wear a pair of overalls.
In an election year, five men took one of the most popular songs (from—gasp!—a group of non-Americans) and twisted its words to out Republican candidate Mitt Romney and his deceitful ways. In speedos. Looks like “Disclosure” got the job done, which means we won’t need them again until 2016. Maybe MoreMen would like to open for them?
And don’t forget to vote for the Jonas Brothers or Super Junior in the final round of our Greatest Boy Band Song Tournament!
More Boy Band Week
Sing along to… mean lyrics made feminist!
Discover how to… dress like a boy-bander!
Curl up with… confessions of boy-band crushes!
Take a gander at… photos of hot boy-band squeezes!
Put your earbuds in for the… ballads playlist!