Twenty-five years ago today, Backstreet Boys released their self-titled debut U.S. album … and they’re still performing most of the songs from it every night on tour.
This 1997 album was actually a compilation of two international albums: a 1996 release also called Backstreet Boys and a 1997 release called Backstreet’s Back. It initially debuted at #29, but thanks to the success of the group’s first big U.S. hit, “Quit Playing Games (With My Heart),” its popularity continued to grow.
In five months, the album had climbed to its peak — #4 — and sold 2 million copies. By the end of 1998, it was the third best-selling album of the year, with more than 5.7 million copies sold. To date, it’s sold more than 14 million copies.
In addition to “Quit Playing Games (With My Heart),” Backstreet Boys also included many of the group’s most beloved songs, including, “All I Have to Give,” “As Long as You Love Me,” “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back),” “I’ll Never Break Your Heart,” “We’ve Got It Goin’ On” and “Get Down (You’re the One for Me).”
The success of Backstreet Boys helped set the stage for the release of their next album, Millennium, which set a record for most copies sold in a single week — 1.124 million — when it arrived in 1999. Millennium went on to become one of the best-selling albums of all time, with 24 million copies sold.
And while BSB has gone on to release many more albums since then, the impact of Backstreet Boys can be seen in the group’s current set list, which includes no less than seven songs from that album. Their current DNA World Tour is set to wrap up this November; their first holiday release, A Very Backstreet Christmas, arrives October 14.
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