Today marks the 25th anniversary of the release of Quit Playing Games with my Heart internationally (followed by a US release in June of 1997). That means that it has been almost 25 years since I fell in love with these boys.
Seems like a lifetime ago (and for some of the fandom’s babies, it was!), but I can still remember hearing the song on the radio and immediately wondering who these boys were.
Written by Max Martin and Herbie Crichlow, it’s no wonder it rose to fame. I can also remember very clearly the first time I saw them perform this live during their Backstreet Boys tour back in 1998.
Since then they’ve continued to play this live in most of their shows. Quit Playin Games with my Heart yielded a lot of milestones for them.
It was a Number 1 single in multiple countries, reached number 2 in the US, and it was the first time they danced in the rain for all of us to see 🙂 Here’s a look back at some of our favorite Quit Playing Games performances:
We’ve got to start with the music video. The rain pouring down on them in their pastel shirts. Howie’s famous wink and that slow body roll. They joke about this video now, talking about their nipples cutting glass in the cold. Brian has shared that they had to sing the song at double speed because the video is in slow motion so they had to speed up the sound to match the visual. He’s also shared that they made that video so early that the final version of the song wasn’t even complete. Nick sang along to Brian’s vocals because Nick hadn’t cut his yet.
Nonetheless, the video is iconic and we have to look back at this masterpiece: Official Music Video.
The first live performances of this song remind us of the fact that these boys were just babies when they recorded and released it. Here’s a fun one of them performing in Europe at Bravo Super Show thanks to Janie Keys and another one of one of their first performances in the states when the song was first released from the BSBFangirls page.
The first time I ever saw this performance live was during the 1997/1998 Backstreet Boys tour in the US. This was the first time they toured the US on a big scale. They had a huge show with the pyrotechnics, dance moves, and the pure vocals. During Quit Playin Games, they even jumped on the instruments. This performance was taken from their show in Argentina, posted by Ryleyb1.
We can’t forget the Millenium performance of this song, which was done In the Round with the full band behind them. They then took off flying over the crowd while the song continued.
It was such a fun sight to see if you were there in the arena and it looked like they were having a blast. That concert was truly one of a kind and one for the record books. Check this one out from the BSB Germany Facebook page.
Of course they continue to do this one in their shows even as late as the Las Vegas residency and the DNA tour. During the Vegas residency, I was lucky to sit right up front and center, right in the action. I still love watching this shortened version of the song
More recently, they performed the show in their DNA set. I love hearing how their voices have matured over the years and how, despite that, they can still hit those notes and sound like pure perfection.
Enjoy this close up of Nick and Brian from the Hershey show from the BSBFangirls page, and another one of the whole performance thanks to Wyatt Peck.
Can’t say thank you enough to this awesome song. It led me to this fandom I’ve been a part of for almost 2 and a half decades. Gotta love these boys and their music!