Boys to Men: A Brief History of Boy Bands

Tristan Eden
One Direction

One Direction, the latest boy band obsession, performs at Ohio Stadium on Aug. 18 as part of their On The Road Again Tour. Here, a look at their predecessors.



Formed in Puerto Rico in the 1970s, Menudo remains one of the biggest Latin American boy bands of all time. Ricky Martin was a member from 1984 to 1989.

New Edition


New Edition, a pop and R&B group, paved the way for the likes of New Kids on the Block, NSYNC and more.

New Kids on the Block


NKOTB was formed in Boston by Maurice Starr (who also discovered New Edition) in the early 1980s. To this day, the band remains one of the best-selling music groups of all time.

Boyz II Men


Extremely popular at the turn of the '90s, Boyz II Men is among the few artists who have replaced themselves at the No. 1 spot on the Billboard chart.

Backstreet Boys


Formed by now-disgraced impresario Lou Pearlman in Orlando, the Backstreet Boys spurred on the 1990s boy band trend as we know it.



Another Pearlman project, NSYNC is most notable for launching the career of Justin Timberlake.

Jonas Brothers


The Jonas Brothers are three real brothers from New Jersey. They formed the band in 2005, and the related Disney Channel show made them superstars.

One Direction


The current reigning champion of the boy band world, One Direction, formed in London, is a global force. The band has released four albums to date. Earlier this year, Zayn Malik left, making it a four-piece.