Loyalty and fandom are nothing new in this day and age. A quick search on Tumblr will point you to fandoms for certain actors, TV shows, bands etc. But the cause of some of the most extreme mass hysteria ever seen has always been the boyband.
There have been fandoms since the days of Elvis and most famously Beatlemania in the 60’s through to today’s current 1D craze. Whenever a group of guys come together or have been thrown together to perform pop songs, there has always been hoards of screaming girls and their showcases of love for them.
From a boyband’s inception and very first single, they aim to gain as many fans as possible. Some write songs themselves, (others don’t), but it is always a catchy tune bound to gain radio airplay and get stuck in your head; see ‘What I Go To School For’ by Busted, ‘Uptown Girl’ by Westlife and ‘Beat Again’ by JLS. Once they have a solid starter fan base that is when the madness starts, growing and growing until there are crowds of screaming/crying girls wherever they go, at shows, outside hotels etc. The whole time they are a band they can do no wrong in their fans eyes and they become some sort of worshipped beings.
But the power of a boyband over their fans doesn’t end after they have split; it lasts long after, as demonstrated this week, when news broke that two members of Busted, Matt Willis and James Bourne, were getting back into the music game and joining forces with their musical friends McFly. McBusted was formed and though it wasn’t a true Busted reunion with their third member Charlie Simpson missing, it was enough to create huge excitement from fans that have waited for this moment for nearly 10 years since Busted announced their split back in 2004. Messages have been extremely positive, even the music media, a tough nut to crack with its scepticism over bands (especially pop bands), reforming has given them a warm response to the announcement. Busted broke the mould in many ways when they started, they were a boyband who wrote their own music and played their own instruments, but still gained huge levels of success on a scale only pop acts ever manage to achieve.
But it’s not just James and Matt who have been successful in this reformation game, so were Take That. When Take That split it in 1996, it spawned scenes of heartbroken, crying fans but when they announced they were back, albeit without Robbie at the time, they instantly regained their previous fan base. Sell out tours and two studio albums later, Gary, Mark, Howard and Jason were now the most successful ‘man-band’ of current times. Robbie returned for a tour which sold out in record timing, becoming one of the biggest, most successful tours of recent years from a pop band.
There have been plenty of band reformations lately, with some just out to make an extra few quid but others relishing making music again. The reaction to McBusted’s announcement alone was quite unprecedented and what unfolds for the supergroup over the course of the next 6 months remains to be seen, but surely it will be something brilliant.
Written by Charlotte Pearson