It’s the age of the boy bands once again, the coming together of 4 or 5 young men to fuel multiple industries of teenage girl themed products and memorabilia. It’s a beautiful and lucrative business no doubt and Corporate executives, market wizards and label heads are smiling to the bank thanks to the careers of One Direction and co.
But for someone like me it doesn’t make sense, or does it?
I, like most other heterosexual and fully matured guys above 25 find these boy bands annoying and see them as more plastic than most critics. Some other guys might actually adopt a more aggressive approach if they ever found themselves in a situation where Harry Styles’ name or which ever of his proxy clones in the group was brought up.
Yet, deep down we seem to have forgotten what we all were like growing up in secondary school.
Yes! You! Take a look back at your past and try hard (I know this will be hard but for the sake of this piece you just have to try), you N’sync/Backstreet boy loving, B2K jumping wanna be. Oya, deny. Lord knows Judgment day has a film reel of you lip syncing at least half of a West life album somewhere in heaven. We’re not all safe I tell you.
Saying you never listened to one boy band or the other will directly translate to you telling me you didn’t experience the earlier forms of MTV or didn’t have some sort of CD collection between Secondary School and University. Were you poor or Amish? Please.
It’s called an education for a reason.
But some of us took it too far sha, spewing lyrics, word for word from a boy band track on that love letter probably put you in a better position to score but what does that say about you now. plagiarist.
Now we hide behind our ‘in depth knowledge’ in music, leaving out our pathetic attempts at choreography or ear shattering attempts to hit notes the law forbids us to hit.
Look. I’m not writing all of this as an excuse to whip out the VCD compilation of N’sync music videos or clean the dust off your lyrics note pad. I’m just telling you guys to chill with the bashing of the boy band lovers of today (well, there’s a problem if the said boy band lover is pushing 30 and still uses hair gel). All things being normal, we once went through that phase before we discovered JayZ and Nas or Yanni and Enya or Lana Del Rey and Mika .
I see some of you in the corner whispering “I’ve always been a rock fan from the beginning so what are you talking about…” … Binsh please. WE ALL LOVED THE BOY BANDS OF THE 90s.
If it’s too much shame for you, I’ll help you out. In fact, that’s what I’m doing right now. Just tone down the physical show of disgust for Justin Beiber (yeah, I know he’s really irritating) and let the little grasshoppers enjoy their day in the sun.
On a philosophical level it’s clearly mass market exploitation that’s shameless on so many levels. For that I can say the same for Disney and Nickelodeon. There’s a market out there ready to be tapped. If I was them I’d probably do worse. Boy bands will probably always be with us, in one form or the other, or you all seem to have forgotten the Jackson 5.
In as much as the beetles were way more organic and well rooted in music foundations than these more recent incarnations, they too are essentially a boy band.
SO let’s drop the hate and adopt an ‘indifferent’ stance to the hysteria, well, that’s until some chic knocks over your beer. At that point you are permitted, by law to go ‘Ape shit’ as you wish.
While you do that, just know that little boy inside you who you’re trying so hard to stifle will always be a 90s boy band fan forever.