On this day (September 9) in 1989, New Kids on the Block hit #1 in the U.S. It would also go on to be a #1 hit in the U.K., and Ireland. It is their only No. 1 single in Ireland and reached the top 10 in Australia, Canada, and New Zealand. This was the fourth single released off of their Hangin’ Tough album.
There are conflicting reports of how the song came about.
The New Kid’s producer and writer Maurice Starr wrote this song with the tough time the boy band had getting things off the ground in mind. He recalled in 1000 UK #1 Hits by Jon Kutner and Spencer Leigh: “We needed a song that symbolized what we had been through, so I came up with this title, Hangin Tough.”
However, Donnie Wahlberg, who sings lead on the track, says this was written with the Boston Celtics in mind. “We literally set out to do a song that could be a theme song for the Celtics. That was the idea: blatantly trying to sound like Queen’s ‘We Will Rock You.'”
They both sound legit, so who knows (and I’m glad that Donnie said they were “trying” to sound like ‘We Will Rock You) ? Either way, I am not exactly a boy-band fan. But, I have to admit this is a fun song.