Today, I was interviewed for a book about fandoms and fangirls and during the interview, I talked about a lot of things, but realized something very important: We are lucky.
The interviewer asked if I ever feared that the boys would never get back together when they took their small break in 2002 and Nick did his first solo album, “Now or Never.”
My response? Not really.
I don’t know why I wasn’t more paranoid that the boys would go their separate ways like the rest of the boy bands of that era would go on to do. Maybe it was the fact that AJ, Brian, Howie and Kevin didn’t really go in a bunker underground never to be seen. Kevin was busy with “Chicago.” AJ took part in a few different TV shows and was out and about with his fiancee at the time. Howie was out and about going on TV shows as did Brian and Leighanne. Hell, AJ, Brian and Leighanne did a TV show together at one point where people talk from beyond the grave.
It was during that time frame that Justin went solo and ‘N Sync went on break, ultimately never getting back together really. O-Town ended, as did 98 Degrees, LFO, BBMak and pretty much every other boy band.
But it was Backstreet Boys who rose from the boy band ashes to carry on.
We could probably thank Oprah Winfrey for that when she got the other four guys to come surprise AJ on her show. It was after that episode that the boys came together again and began work on what would become “Never Gone.”
Because they were never gone.
Maybe we should send Oprah a thank you note or a fruit basket. I could make a play on “Chances” and ask, “what if AJ was never on her show?” “What if Nick never flew back from London for that episode?” “What if Kevin decided right then and there he was done with Jive instead of a few years down the line?”
There are so many things that could have happened and we would all be sitting here today, probably longing for the good ol’ days when Nick and Brian were Frick and Frack.
We’re lucky we can actually celebrate Frick and Frack Friday and actually mean it.
This year they celebrate their 26th anniversary and today I think I realized just HOW lucky we are to be able to say that. Backstreet Boys have lasted longer than some marriages, businesses, even lives. We’ve seen some of the things they’ve overcome in their documentary and they are always so open and honest with us that sometimes I don’t think people truly appreciate it.
While I’ve said in the past how the boys, especially Nick, have helped me over the years, it was today that I realized that they have shaped who I am as a person. Without them, I’m incomplete. (No pun intended). Sure, that’s probably unhealthy to say about a band, but the boys know how much they meant to us. They see us travel the globe to see them. They see us call into a TV show to continuously vote for them (TRL and Dancing With The Stars). They see us on these fan accounts whether it’s on Instagram or Twitter or Facebook. They see us represent them and keep the Backstreet pride alive.
We mean just as much to Kevin, AJ, Brian, Nick and Howie as they meant to us.
So tonight, while you’re watching television or scrolling through Instagram, think about where you would be if we never got “Never Gone.” Think about the fact that they are about to release their 10th album in less than three weeks. Think about the fact that they were outselling Ariana Grande on iTunes this weekend.
We, as the Backstreet Boys army, are SO freaking lucky that we still have the boys. While some people get greedy about things or upset, sit back and think about that.
Thank you Backstreet Boys for never leaving us. <3