With their smooth brand of doo-wop/hip-hop, Boyz II Men has spearheaded the renaissance of the R&B vocal group, in the process revitalizing Motown Records (the band has become Motown's best-selling act, and their second album, Boyz II Men II, is the label's best-selling album of all time). The Boyz have sold over thirty million albums worldwide as of the first half of 1997, and have managed to capture plenty of awards--not to mention plenty of hearts--along the way.
Their magnificent vocals provided a welcome alternative to the lip-sync trash of Milli Vanilli and the white-boy rap of Vanilla Ice, and their looks and smooth ways made them instant teen idols. Magazines outdid themselves trying to come up with ways to categorize the four singers, and the results were pretty amusing: Wanya was generally portrayed as the hyperactive one; Nate, the serious one; Shawn, the mellow one; and Mike became known as the Barry White of his generation. But they had already come up with their own stage personas: Mike "Bass" McCary, Wanya "Squirt" Morris, Shawn "Slim" Stockman, and Nate "Alexander Vanderpool" Morris (the moniker belongs to a character from Morris's favorite soap opera).