Formed under the aegis of manager Maurice Starr, Boston's New Edition were more than a Jackson 5 for hip-hop kids. With Bobby Brown and all of Bell Biv DeVoe in the line-up, they would shape much of contemporary R&B. However, it did take a while for them to see the benefit: the royalty cheque from their debut album was just $1.87. Starr later repeated the formula with New Kids on the Block, and the boyband as we know it was born.
Gareth Grundy is deputy editor of the Observer Food Monthly. A former deputy editor of the Observer Music Monthly, he also writes about pop for the New Review