New Kids On the Block

New Kids On the Block

    New Kids On the Block was the creation of producer Maurice Starr, who, after a relatively unsuccessful solo singing career, made a name for himself as the svengali behind the emergence of the teen pop/soul group New Edition. After a messy breakup with that Boston-based group, Starr basically created a white version of New Edition with the teenaged New Kids, consisting of Joey McIntyre, Donnie Wahlberg, Jordan Knight, Jonathan Knight and Danny Wood.  

    After a relatively unimpressive debut album, New Kids shot to the top of the music world with Hangin' Tough, which spawned six hits, including four #1s. Vocally competent and boasting good looks and solid dance moves, they were teenage hearthrobs and arguably the most popular group in the world from 1988-1990.  

    They followed Hangin' Tough with the chart-topping Step By Step in 1990, but by '91 they began the inevitable fall from grace as they and their teenage fanbase grew up.  By 1994's Face The Music, the group (which tried to take on a new, more mature identity as "NKOTB") was an afterthought.  They broke up soon afterward.  

    Wahlberg established a decent career as an actor (as did his brother, Mark Wahlberg), and the other members, save Jonathan Knight, released solo albums before fading into the sunset.   New Kids On The Block announced in early 2008 that the members would be reuniting for a Summer tour as well as a new album.  

    By Chris Rizik

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