Dorough and McLean were the first two to meet each other, through a mutual vocal coach in Orlando. They ran into Carter through auditions, and the three boys decided to form a musical trio. Meanwhile, cousins Littrell and Richardson sang in a church choir back in Kentucky. Richardson moved to Orlando to work at Disney World.
The 5 of them finally got together after they all responded to an ad in an Orlando paper in 1992, looking for auditions for a new vocal group. Richardson told his cousin about the opportunity who came out to try it. Ultimately, the 5 boys were selected by music producer (and later convicted Ponzi scheme fraudster) Lou Pearlman.
Thus, Backstreet Boys was formed, named after a flea market in Orlando. They did their first live show at SeaWorld Orlando in May 1993. They continued doing live performances in Florida. Eventually, they were signed by Mercury Records.
Their debut album, the self-titled “Backstreet Boys”, was released in May 1996 in Germany, where the band was based at the time. There, it became a massive success. It was followed by the record’s international release in August 1997, which too became a hit, peaking at the #4 spot on the Billboard 200 chart in the US.
They released 3 more albums before going on a hiatus in 2002 due to disagreement with their management company. However, that break was short-lived, and the boys were back, recording music and performing live again by 2004. They had another short hickup along the way when Richardson left the group to start his career as a solo artist in 2006. The band refused to replace him, even though there was even a suggestion to produce a reality show contest to find the new member. Richardson’s plans did not work out for him, and he rejoined BSB in 2012, who kept his place vacant for him.
Backstreet Boys has released a total of 9 studio albums together. The best selling one among them is their third one, “Millennium”, which came out in May 1999 and sold a staggering 24 million copies worldwide. Meanwhile, their latest record is set to come out in October 2022, with the title “A Very Backstreet Christmas”, after it was delayed due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
The famed Floridan pop boy band’s biggest hits to date are “As Long as You Love Me” (1997), “Everybody(Backstreet's Back)” (also 1997), “I Want It That Way” (1999), “Shape of My Heart” (2000), With over 100 million copies of their albums or singles sold, Backstreet Boys is the best selling boy band of all time. Their documentary came out in 2015, titled “Backstreet Boys: Show 'Em What You're Made Of”.