Motownphilly – Boyz II Men | Top 40 Chart Performance, Story and Song Meaning

Chart Performance: Pop (#3) and R&B (#4); 1991

Story Behind The Song By Ed Osborne

Backstreet Boys, *NSYNC, LFO, and a dozen other “boy bands” all owe their careers to Boyz II Men who broke into public awareness with Motownphilly in 1991. The Boyz came together while attending Philadelphia’s High School of the Creative and Performing Arts, and dubbed themselves Unique Attraction.

Leaning heavily on songs by New Edition they wowed former NE group member Michael “Biv” Bivins backstage after a Bel Biv DeVoe concert.

Bivens offered them a deal on the spot. Renamed Boyz II Men – after a New Edition hit – the group singed on with Motown Records, and released Motownphilly.

If Motownphilly‘s success was impressive, the album – Cooleyhighharmony – was stunningly so, selling nine-times-platinum sales and winning a 1991 Grammy award.

This content and all Song Meaning articles were created and written by Top 40 Contributing Editor Ed Osborne. © 2024 Ed Osborne. All Rights Reserved. In addition to these song meaning articles, Ed has written our “Year in Music 1960s-1990s” articles.

Produced by:

  • Dallas Austin

Lyrics Written by:

  • Dallas Austin
  • Michael Bivins
  • Nathan Morris
  • Shawn Stockman