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About Boyz II Men

Boyz II Men is an American vocal harmony group from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, best known for emotional ballads and a cappella harmonies. Formed in 1985, they have been a trio composed of baritone Nathan Morris alongside tenors Wanyá Morris and Shawn Stockman since 2003. During the 1990s, Boyz II Men was a quartet with bass singer, Michael McCary, who left the group in 2003 due to health issues that were diagnosed as multiple sclerosis.

The group first saw commercial success in 1991 with the release of their singles "Motownphilly" and "It's So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday," both of which peaked within the top five of the Billboard Hot 100. Their 1992 single, "End of the Road" peaked atop the chart and set a then-record for spending 13 weeks at the position. Boyz II Men later broke this record twice more with the singles "I'll Make Love to You" and "One Sweet Day" which, at 14 and 16 weeks respectively, set records for most weeks at number one. When "On Bended Knee" took the number one spot away from "I'll Make Love to You," Boyz II Men became the third musical act, after the Beatles and Elvis Presley, to replace themselves atop the Billboard Hot 100. These achievements gave Boyz II Men recognition as Billboard magazine's biggest boy band from 1987 to 2012.

Boyz II Men continued to perform as a trio despite McCary's departure. Their latest studio album, Under the Streetlight, was released in 2017. Boyz II Men have received four Grammy Awards.

The group, originally named Unique Attraction, was formed in 1985 by Michael Grimaldi, Nathan Morris, and Marc Nelson at the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts along with fellow schoolmates George Baldi, Jon Shoats, and Marguerite Walker. In 1987, Wanyá Morris, who sang in the school's choir along with the members of Unique Attraction, joined the group and became a permanent member as a freshman. In 1988 Baldi, Shoats and Walker left the group due to graduation. They then recruited Shawn Stockman after seeing him perform a solo in the school's choir. After an encounter in a school bathroom, Michael McCary started singing along with the group and eventually became the group's new bass singer. With their permanent lineup of members, the group rehearsed in the high school's bathrooms, in the corners of their schools, and other local areas. At CAPA, they were mentored by LaDeva Davis.

Finding inspiration in New Edition's harmonies and routines, they eventually renamed the group "Boyz II Men," after New Edition's "Boys to Men," from the 1988 album Heart Break. After performing at a Valentine's Day party at school in 1989, they snuck into a concert put on by local radio station Power 99 at the Philadelphia Civic Center. They planned to find Will Smith backstage and perform for him. However, while looking for Smith, they happened to cross paths with New Edition member Michael Bivins, who, along with bandmates Ricky Bell and Ronnie DeVoe, had just announced they were forming a New Edition spin-off trio, Bell Biv DeVoe. After they sang New Edition's "Can You Stand the Rain" for him, Bivins and everyone in attendance, including other celebrities, were impressed. He then gave the group his number and told them to call him. Nate eventually called him, and he agreed to manage and help produce the group.

The delay before recording their own material and reported personality conflicts led founding member Marc Nelson to leave the group, making Boyz II Men into the quartet that found international fame: Michael McCary, Nathan Morris, Wanyá Morris, and Shawn Stockman.

Boyz II Men's first album, Cooleyhighharmony, was released on Motown in 1991 and was produced by Michael Bivins. Cooleyhighharmony's drum-heavy new jack swing sound and multi-layered sampled backdrops were similar to that of Bell Biv DeVoe's own work, but featured classic-soul styled vocals in place of BBD's rapping and brassier singing. This style was dubbed "hip hop doo-wop" by the group and Bivins, who presented Boyz II Men and adolescent R&B group Another Bad Creation to the public as BBD's protégés.

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Boyz II Men", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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