Why Aren’t They In The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame: Boyz II Men

If there is any old school trend in music that I would like to see a lot more of, it would be the classy and retro New Jack Swing of the early 1990’s [1].  Boyz II Men were a big part of that success, and during the 1990’s they released one successful album after another with hit single after hit single, and their songs have definitely stood the test of time.  Although the group is not as popular today as they once were, they still release smooth music that is worthy of attention.  With beautiful vocal harmonies and melodic songs about love and identity, this was a band that certainly deserves recognition, and it seems likely that their music will always be treasured by those who enjoy good melodies and harmonies, and can appreciate that R&B music can come loaded with hooks, something many contemporary artists unfortunately seem to have forgotten in recent generations.  I am, in fact, more surprised that this group, whose music was such an important part of the soundtrack of my teenage years, has not been considered of more importance because they have definitely served as inspiration for many vocal groups that have followed them.

The Influence Of Boyz II Men

The influence of Boyz II Men has at least two paths.  On the one hand, the harmonies of the band and their immense success starting in the early 1990’s was a major part of the rise of the boybands later that decade, and along with New Kids On The Block they showed how smooth harmonies and a solid R&B sound could lead to massive and enduring success on the charts, something that was copied by a wide variety of later imitators like Backstreet Boys, ‘N Sync, and 98 Degrees, all of whom sought to infuse their pop vocal harmonies with R&B elements.  On a less purely popular level, the prowess of Boyz II Men in singing about love and lovemaking made the world safe for those like Chris Brown and others who similarly wished to show themselves as being smooth lovers without losing their credibility as R&B singers.  Boyz II Men, in their own words, were not too hard and not too soft, and their middle path proved to be a popular and enduring one not only for themselves but for many later artists, something that is well worth appreciating and honoring.

Why Boyz II Men Belong In The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame

Aside from their influence in the pop and R&B world, which alone would be sufficient for them to be worthy of induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, we have to consider their career.  As a band they were immensely successful in both album sales and singles, and have four multi-platinum albums (one of which went 9x platinum and another which has gone 12x platinum), one additional platinum album and three additional gold albums.  This band was no flash in the pan.  And then there is the music, with the band having 5 number #1 hits, all of them worthwhile and memorable (“End Of The Road,” “I’ll Make Love To You,” “On Bended Knee,” “4 Seasons Of Loneliness,” and their collaboration with Mariah Carey on “One Sweet Day”).  Their six additional top ten hits are no less memorable (“Motownphilly,” “It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday,” “In The Still Of The Nite (I’ll Remember),” “Water Runs Dry,” “A Song For Mama,” and their collaboration with LL Cool J on “Hey Lover.”  This was a group whose music has been of immense beauty and lasting value and they have collaborated successful with groups as diverse as Bell Biv Devoe, Brian McKnight, and the aforementioned Mariah Carey and LL Cool J [2].  Did Boyz II Men dramatically shape the music world of the 1990’s?  Absolutely.  Would Cleveland’s jukeboxes be better off with the music of Boyz II Men on them?  Without question.  That’s a rock-solid case for induction right there.

Why Aren’t Boyz II Men In The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame

This is a mystery to me.  So far it appears as if the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame has skipped over a large amount of worthwhile and influential R&B acts [3] from the era and moved on to Gangsta rap.  The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is a great deal for the worse in having snubbed so many worthwhile R&B acts.  There would appear to be no good reason why Boyz II Men haven’t been honored with induction–they are a group that made great music, they have a huge amount of respect for the history of R&B music, and they appear like all around great guys.  Why not honor that?

Verdict:  Put them in.

[1] See, for example:

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2017/03/16/why-arent-they-in-the-rock-roll-hall-of-fame-new-editionbell-biv-devoebobby-brown/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2016/06/22/why-arent-they-in-the-rock-roll-hall-of-fame-tony-toni-tone/

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boyz_II_Men_discography

[3] See, for example:

https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2013/08/11/why-arent-they-in-the-rock-roll-hall-of-fame-janet-jackson/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2015/02/04/why-arent-they-in-the-rock-roll-hall-of-fame-whitney-houston/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.wordpress.com/2016/02/01/why-arent-they-in-the-rock-roll-hall-of-fame-mariah-carey/

https://edgeinducedcohesion.blog/2017/02/15/why-arent-they-in-the-rock-roll-hall-of-fame-luther-vandross/

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in History, Music History, Musings and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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