Written by Dave Clements
Jun 27, 2013 at 08:00 PM
ImageEight Boys and Thirteen Thousand girls…how bad can those odds be? That was the audience at the Toyota Center attending ‘The Package’ Tour. If you were to interview any of the 13K ladies who were there to see the New Kids On The Block, Boyz II Men and 98 Degrees, my guess is they’d say ‘Wonderful show from start to finish!’.

Now that assumes they could talk. I don’t think many would have been able to as they were surely hoarse from screamin’ all freakin’ night….loudly! And AT THE TOP OF THEIR LUNGS!

Although I didn’t have high expectations for these three performances, I must say I was very pleasantly surprised by what I saw and heard. Impressive, as clearly all ‘the boys’, first 3, then 4, and finally 5 all had their proverbial acts together.

Philadelphia based Boyz II Men were first up, dressed in white, one donning a Philly baseball cap, hit the stage ready to quickly prove why they were one of the most successful groups in the 90’s. Check out their list of credentials that are too substantial to list here. These guys hold so many records on the Billboard R&B chart that they should change the name to the Morris X 2 & Stockman chart!

Not sure why they were first out and only sang 6 songs but that was what happened. They have such beautiful harmonies and are so much like what I grew up listening to – I was blown away. They took me back to a time in my life when all I listened to was Smokey Robinson, The Four Tops, and of course the Temptations. Those gents were the forerunners and obviously an inspiration to what these guys were all about some 20-30 years later.

ImageJeff, Nick, Justin, and Drew, better known as 98 Degrees, were up within seconds after Boyz II Men left the stage.

It turns out that this band was started by one of its members, Jeff Timmons, after sneaking back stage at a Boyz II Men concert. Ironic that the band that motivated them into the spotlight was now opening for them.

Disappointing to discover that, although they have had significant commercial success selling over 10 million records worldwide, they just don’t have the pedigree that their inspiration has had. Having said that, these four guys were definitely entertaining. Their 8 song set included chart toppers Invisible Man, Because Of You, The Hardest Thing, My Everything and, of course, I Do (Cherish You) dedicated to all the married ladies in the audience.

As you would expect the Toyota Center erupted once again into screams.  All of the three dozen guys in the almost ALL girl audience that night joined in the singing just out of self defense.  And 98 Degrees got us smiling, too, when they said ‘Yes, it’s hot here in Texas!  When we got off the plane today the temperature was…you got it…98 degrees!’.

After a short intermission NKOTB came out ready to prove that there was a reason why they were ‘The Headliners’!

ImageThe Bean Town Boys, all five of them, came well prepared and in great shape to give the ladies still more of why they came in the first place…boy toys!

These very old ‘boys’, having declared over 20 years performing, spent almost two hours going through 19 tunes that had resulted in 80 million records sold worldwide to date. Not too shabby and although I have never been a fan of Pop music, I got them. They certainly provided lots of photo ops during their first two songs (see photo gallery) and I enjoyed watching the ladies while they enjoyed watching them.

What more can I say other than collectively these 12 very talented men got it done for the thirteen thousand women who were looking to get worked up by the live on stage ‘eye candy’. These boys did their jobs and it looked like the women were leaving very satisfied. I’m sure they all fell asleep that night with smiles on their faces and enjoyed some sweet dreams.

Until next time, remember there’s no time to kill.