Nick Carter (Backstreet Boys)
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Backstreet's back (alright), but during the group's hiatuses, Nick Carter's taken a couple of cracks at releasing solo records. In both go-arounds, the results on the charts have been modest at best. In 2002, Nick released Now or Never, an album that went Gold but was absolutely dwarfed in sales by Timberlake's Justified. (It did better than Aaron Carter's album from that year, if you like marking that sort of thing as a plus.) Nine years later, Nick put out his optimistically titled second album I'm Taking Off. The sophomore effort did okay here in Canada, but it didn't send much of a tremor through the United States. At the moment, Nick's in the process of trying to make an indie horror movie that he co-wrote called Evil Blessings. (No word yet on if Nick appears on the soundtrack.)
AJ McLean (Backstreet Boys)
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Johnny No Name Fever: Catch It! Aside from Kevin Richardson, all the members of BSB have a solo album or two in their discography. That said, only AJ McLean can claim touring as the rebellious devil-may-care alter-ego "Johnny No Name" on his resume. Sadly, "Johnny No Name" is strictly a live proposition, but McLean did release a solo full-length in 2010 called Have It All. Former boy band rival JC Chasez (remember him from a few slides back?) lent a hand in the production of the album.
The second One Direction member to embark on a solo career is Niall Horan, who released his first single "This Town" on Sept. 29, 2016. "I'm excited to announce I have signed a record deal with Capitol Records USA and released my first solo song," said Horan in a statement after signing on as a solo artist with Capitol. "Thank you to all the One Direction fans for your love and support as always. I'm looking forward to the next part of this journey together." Little has been heard of Horan since he was nominated for Best Solo Breakout Artist at this year's iHeartRadio Music Awards.
Justin Timberlake (*NSYNC)
When it comes to making the leap from boy band star to sought after multi-threat gentleman, Justin Timberlake is the undisputed champ. JT's solo career was a smash straight out of the gate, scoring a well-received debut album (2002's Justified) that came complete with a number of hits that helped the ex-Mouseketeer shift from Bop pin-up to serious pop commodity. Justin's follow-up efforts went down smoothly with the public and the singer also established himself as an on-screen presence as well, appearing in movies opposite Cameron Diaz, Jesse Eisenberg and Mila Kunis. Not shabby for a dude that mostly said "WORD!" on his appearance on The Simpsons. Boy band stars with higher aspirations (Hi, Harry!) take note, this is the dude that you want to study game film of. That said, Joey Fatone's gig as the announcer on Family Feud sounds pretty fun.
JC Chasez (*NSYNC)
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JT wasn't the only *NSYNCer to go it alone when the band went their separate ways. JC Chasez put out his own full-length solo effort in 2004. Schizophrenic featured tracks like "All Day Long I Dream About Sex" (because JC wants to put you on notice that he's all sexual and stuff) and "Blowin' Me Up (With Her Love)" which also appeared on the Drumline soundtrack. Schizophrenic fizzled on the charts and JC has since transitioned into a producing/songwriting career. One of the acts JC's written a song for? A li'l group known as the Backstreet Boys. What an age we live in, eh?
Nick Lachey (98°)
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We'll put it out there: Nick Lachey's solo career has gone a healthy margin better than bandmate Justin Jeffre's quest to become mayor of Cincinnati. The 98 degree star got a bit of a post-boy band publicity boost thanks to his MTV-documented relationship with pop star Jessica Simpson. (The mid '00s were a weird time to be alive, dude.) The success of the show Newlyweds helped Nick stay in the public eye, although it didn't help his 2003 debut solo album SoulO (WOOF!) move much in the way of the units. The 2006 post-divorce album What's Left of Me was a bit more kind to Nick, ultimately going Gold. The former Bop pin-up has kept himself busy lately with a slew of hosting gigs, reality show projects and a children's album entitled A Father's Lullaby.
Robbie Williams (Take That)
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Noel Gallagher of Oasis once slagged off Robbie Williams as "the fat dancer from Take That." Opinions on Robbie's weight at the time may vary, but the English pop star was in fact a man that did some dancing as a member of UK boy band Take That. Robbie and Take That went their separate ways in 1995 after a bout of internal conflict (read: artistic differences and Robbie's hard partying lifestyle) and the furry-browed singer wound up becoming a major solo star in Europe. The band and Robbie made amends in 2010 when Robbie rejoined the recently reunited Take That for an album and tour.
Abz Love (5ive)
Oh 5ive, you were too beautiful for this world. You taught us how to "Slam Dunk (Da Funk)" and what happens "When The Lights Go Out," as well as other useful tidbits. Abz soldiered on after 5ive packed it in, scoring a trio of hits in the UK courtesy of his 2003 album Abstract Theory. Whither modern day Abz? He still exists, popping up on things like Celebrity Big Brother (he finished in the runner-up position) and 5ive's recent reunion tour.
Ronan Keating (Boyzone)
Irish boy band Boyzone fell into an indefinite holding pattern in 2000, freeing up each of the group's members to pursue their own individual projects. Ronan Keating didn't miss a beat, as he shifted easily from his usual pop ensemble duties to having a succesful solo career in the UK, Ireland and Australia.
Bobby Brown (New Edition)
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Some singers tumble down a rabbit hole of anonymity when their boy band calls it a day, but New Edition alums did reasonably well following the group's split. Ricky, Ronnie and Michael formed Bell Biv DeVoe, Ralph Tresvant and Johnny Gill both had respectable solo careers and Bobby Brown's prospects continued to skyrocket after he exited the group. Mind you, Brown wasn't able to keep that trajectory for long. Assorted demons (including those in his tumultuous marriage to Whitney Houston) constantly derailed the "Don't Be Cruel" singer's career, making Brown more of a tabloid fixture than a chart fixture.
Jordan Knight (New Kids On The Block)
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If you're measuring New Kids On The Block solo success, the champ's probably Donnie Wahlberg. Donnie has an admirable IMDB page to his credit, electing to focus on acting instead of continued pop stardom. If we're looking at post-NKOTB musical solo success, Jordan Knight is the reigning title holder. Jordan notched a hit in 1999 with the Robin Thicke co-penned track "Give It To You." The singer has continued to put out solo material at a relaxed pace, albeit with nothing approaching the success of his late 90s hit.
Nick Jonas (Jonas Brothers)
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Not to reveal too many of the magician's secrets here at ET Canada, but the last time we did one of these "boy band members that have gone solo" roundups, Nick Jonas was plunked in the "he's doing alright" category thanks to his post Jonas Brothers work as Nick Jonas & The Administration. Smash cut to 2015 where Nick's stock as a pop star has soared from "warmly received" to breakout campaign status. Nick notched a big hit last year courtesy of the ultra catchy "Jealous" and he's also impressed critics with his work on the MMA-minded DirecTV drama Kingdom.
Joe Jonas (Jonas Brothers)
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With all due respect to those of you out there that consider 2011's Fastlife to be a masterpiece, Joe Jonas' most interesting solo contribution to the world of pop has proven to be an essay in New York Magazine where he dishes the dirt on his JoBro era exploits. Secret dates with fellow pop stars! Secret pot smoking with fellow pop stars! Not so secret Disney grooming! It was enough to make one crave a Motley Crue's "The Dirt" style full-length tell-all. In that essay Joe also revealed that Fastlife was not the solo album he wanted to make. "One of my biggest career disappointments happened a few years ago, when I made a solo album that never saw the light of day," wrote Joe. Buck up, Joe. If Nick's taught us anything, it's that a career revival is just a hit song away.
Brian McFadden (Westlife)
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Brian McFadden parted ways with Irish boy band Westlife in 2004 in pursuit of solo glory. The pop pin-up snapped up a #1 hit in Ireland, Britain and Norway thanks his introductory track "Real To Me." (Solo performer stubble and lyrics about the perils of fame were also part of that mix.) The hit parade stalled not to long after that, although he's remained relatively popular in Australia. He's even served a few terms as a judge on Australia's Got Talent.
Ricky Martin (Menudo)
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Where would we be without Ricky Martin? (More importantly, where would William Hung be without Ricky Martin?) Ricky's resumé includes a stint in the perpetually regenerating Puerto Rican boy band Menudo. The pop performer nimbly transitioned to a solo career knocking out successful solo albums and gaining ground as a worldwide star. Next up, full-on crossover stardom thanks to the World Cup anthem "The Cup of Life" and the U.S. conquering "Livin' La Vida Loca." Ricky's star has cooled since, but for a while he was one of the biggest stars on the planet.
George Michael (Wham!)
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When Wham! split in 1986, George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley went their separate ways. Andrew tried his hand at auto racing and acting, while George pursued solo pop glory. We feel comfortable in declaring that George's post-Wham! career was a little rosier. George Michael scooped awards by the truckload, collected platinum albums and appeared on MTV on a near constant loop. Andrew did release a solo effort in 1990 (Son of Albert), but the album was a flop and was roundly panned by critics and record buyers alike.