Backstreet Boys, NKOTB, One Direction Included In ‘Top Boy Band Songs of All-Time’ (Video)
This is the year of the boy band. One Direction is selling out concert tickets all over the world as is their American counterparts, Big Time Rush. The youngsters are not alone. A slew of grown up boy bands are also hitting the road in 2013: Backstreet Boys, NKOTB, Boyz II Men, 98 Degrees, Jonas Brothers, and even The Monkees (if you’re so inclined to label them as a boy band). If you like breezy pop tunes and effeminate looking men then this is the year for you.
And speaking of breezy pop tunes, what are the top boy band songs of all-time? Land of Punt locked themselves into a room for an entire afternoon and refused to come out until we answered that very question. What we came up with is a definitive list of the ten best boy band songs ever released. Our list includes selections from The Jackson Five all the way through One Direction.
1. “ABC” – The Jackson Five
In 1970, “ABC” usurped “Let it Be” on the top of the Billboard Hot 100. This is the band’s second single and second number one record. With its simple title of “ABC” and boogie-inducing vibe, it’s also the perfect boy band song.
2. “I’m A Believer” – The Monkees
Almost immediately after being cast as The Monkees, Mickey, Peter, Michael, and Davy tried hard to turn themselves into a legit rock band. In 1966, before they got control of their own tune-age, they released this spirited Neil Diamond composition. It’s not very deep but it’s fun to sing along to.
3. “I Want You Back” – The Jackson Five
“I Want You Back” is the first single released by The Jackson Five as well as their first of four consecutive number one hit singles. You’ll find this track on the band’s debut album, Diana Ross Presents the Jackson 5.
4. “Back for Good” – Take That
Take That wasn’t very popular in the United States but they were huge in Great Britain and Europe. We don’t know what it is about the English but they sure know how to write a memorable melody. They must have learned it from McCartney. “Back for Good” was written by Take That frontman Gary Barlow.
5. "Quit Playing Games (with My Heart)" – The Backstreet Boys
"Quit Playing Games (with My Heart)" was recorded in Stockholm, Sweden in 1995. It was released in Europe in 1996, and then in the States in 1997. While it’s The Backstreet Boys’ first U.S. single, the record company originally wanted their debut to be "If You Want It (To Be Good Girl).” The boys objected and eventually got their way.
6. “Motownphilly” – Boyz II Men
Yes, three Boyz II Men singles spent double-digit weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 ("End of the Road," "On Bended Knee," and "One Sweet Day"), but come on! The one B2M song everyone loves is “Motownphilly.” If you don’t like this track you don’t like ice cream: Motownphilly’s back again Doin’ a little east coast swing.
7. “Step by Step” – New Kids On The Block
Penned by Maurice Starr, “Step by Step” is the New Kids on the Block’s most successful single. Jordan Night sings lead but every NKOTB member croons a “step.” Another note: Danny’s brother Mark (Wahlberg) appears in the video.
8. “It’s Gonna Be Me” – ‘N Sync
Just one listen of “It’s Gonna Be Me” and you’ll want to pop and lock it. It’s also ‘N Sync’s only number one single. The jingle first saw the light of day on June 13, 2000. Lyrically, it’s quite vapid, but musically, ‘N Sync was way ahead of their competitors.
9. “Saturday Night” – Bay City Rollers
“Saturday Night” has a lot of moving parts. It’s like the songwriters wanted to include as much stuff as possible so there would be something for everyone. Regardless of Bill Martin’s and Phil Coulter’s motives, “Saturday Night” is one heck of a catchy song. The version known by most Americans is sung by Nobby Clark but by the time the band came to America he had quit and was replaced by Les Mckeown.
10. “Live While We’re Young” – One Direction
“Live While We’re Young” was released in late September of 2012. The song’s opening few bars drew criticism from music pundits who believed it was nicked from The Clash’s “Should I Stay or Should I Go.” The song is as vapid as the day is long but it will get you up on your feet shaking what the good Lord gave you.