- Pop music dominated the charts in the 1990s, with singers like Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, and Jennifer Lopez becoming household names.
- Boy bands, especially Backstreet Boys and NSYNC, definitely had a moment during the decade.
- And singers like Mariah Carey and Alanis Morissette also made it big during the ’90s.
- See what some of your favorite ’90s pop stars have been up to since then.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The ’90s was a huge decade for music, with singers like Britney Spears and Mariah Carey, as well as boy bands like NSYNC, becoming household names.
The decade also launched the careers of stars like Jennifer Lopez, Mandy Moore, and Christina Aguilera — singers who are still doing exciting things even after the 90s heyday.
See what some of the biggest names in ’90s pop music are up to today.
Britney Spears rose to fame in the late 1990s.
After the release of her debut single “…Baby One More Time” in 1998, as well as her debut album in 1999, Spears instantly became a pop superstar. The music video for “…Baby One More Time,” which features the singer dressed as a Catholic schoolgirl, is one of the most iconic music videos from the ’90s.
And even though Spears would go on to release several more successful albums in the 2000s, her iconic career definitely began in the 1990s.
Jennifer Lopez got her big break when she starred in the 1997 movie “Selena,” about the murdered Chicana singer.
The singer, actress, and dancer got her start dancing in music videos, like Janet Jackson’s 1993 video for “That’s The Way Love Goes.” Lopez also appeared on the popular sketch show “In Living Color” as a dancer, but really got her big break playing Tejana singer Selena in the 1997 biopic.
She dropped her debut album, “On the 6,” in 1999. Much like Spears, Lopez’s debut single “If You Had My Love” became an instant hit, and made the singer a household name.
Lopez has kept busy in recent years, appearing in films like “Hustlers.”
In recent years, Lopez has released several new singles, appeared on shows like “Shades of Blue” and in films like “Hustlers,” and even headlined a tour in honor of her 50th birthday this year.
Lopez has two children with her ex-husband Marc Anthony, and will co-headline the 2020 Superbowl with Shakira. The singer and actress also has several film and television projects in the works.
Mariah Carey released her debut album in 1990.
Carey achieved mainstream success in the 1990s following the successful release of her debut album. She recorded and released seven albums through the ’90s, including her hit Christmas album “Merry Christmas,” which featured the iconic single “All I Want for Christmas Is You.”
The singer has received numerous awards and honors throughout her impressive career.
Despite a public separation from her ex-husband Nick Cannon, as well as a struggle with mental illness, Carey’s career is still going strong. In 2018, she released a critically-acclaimed album called “Caution,” and subsequently embarked on a world tour. The singer will also go on tour in support of the 2019 re-release of “Merry Christmas.”
Boy bands like the Backstreet Boys were big in the ’90s.
Backstreet Boys released their first self-titled album in 1996, but it was their second album, 1997’s “Backstreet’s Back,” that truly made them pop icons. Featuring singles like “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back),” the album sold millions of copies and made the group a household name.
In 1999, the Backstreet Boys released “Millennium,” which included instant hits like “Larger Than Life” and “I Want It That Way.” Following the album release, the band embarked on a world tour, and broke sales records in numerous cities.
Despite losing some momentum in the mid-2000s, the Backstreet Boys have been active in recent years.
The band released their ninth studio album, “DNA,” on January 25 of this year, and subsequently embarked on a world tour to support it. They’ve also headlined a Las Vegas residency, recorded several albums, and even released an exhibit at the Grammy museum in recent years.
NSYNC was another iconic boy band from the ’90s.
The group was one of the biggest names in ’90s pop, thanks in part to their eye-catching style, catchy singles, and synchronized dance moves. NSYNC released their self-titled debut album in 1997, and it became an instant hit in Europe.
They went on to release two more albums in the ’90s (1998’s “‘NSYNC,” and “Home for Christmas,” released that same year) and subsequently became a success in the US, too. The boy band would continue to find pop success in the early 2000s with singles like “It’s Gonna Be Me.”
Several band members have gone on to have successful careers.
Even though the group officially disbanded in 2007, several members, including Justin Timberlake, have gone on to have lucrative solo careers. Timberlake has released several successful albums under his own name, and headlined numerous tours and shows, including the Superbowl halftime show in 2018.
And NSYNC famously reunited for Ariana Grande’s set at Coachella earlier this year, performing several of the singer’s hits during her set.
Christina Aguilera became a star with the release of her 1999 single “Genie in a Bottle.”
The single quickly catapulted Aguilera to pop stardom, and her eponymous debut album, released that same year, peaked at No. 1 on the Billboard 200. Aguilera was even recognized as best new artist at the 42nd annual Grammy Awards, and would go on to enjoy success throughout most of the 2000s.
Aguilera released her latest album in 2018.
Following her success in the ’90s, Aguilera released numerous albums and even appeared in several films and television shows.
More recently, Aguilera has headlined a Vegas residency, appeared as a judge on several seasons of NBC’s “The Voice,” and voiced a character in “The Emoji Movie.”
Brandy released a successful album and played the role of Cinderella in the ’90s.
Following the release of her 1993 self-titled album, Brandy received several Grammy nominations, and even opened for Boyz II Men on their 1995 tour. And at the height of her ’90s fame, Brandy was hand-picked by Whitney Houston to play Cinderella in a multicultural adaptation that Houston was producing.
Brandy released her second album in 1998, and went on to star in several major films, including “I Still Know What You Did Last Summer.”
In recent years, Brandy has appeared on Broadway and on television shows.
After taking several hiatuses from music throughout the last decade, Brandy released her latest single in June of this year.
The singer also appeared in a Broadway production of “Chicago” in 2015, and is expected to release her new album sometime in the next year.
Mandy Moore started her career as a pop star.
Moore released her first single, “Candy,” in 1999, and subsequently toured with the Backstreet Boys in support of her upcoming album, “So Real,” which was released in December of that year.
Even though the album wasn’t an instant commercial success, it led to increased recognition for Moore, and was eventually certified platinum by the RIAA.
She now has a starring role on the hit NBC show “This Is Us.”
Following her pop stardom in the late ’90s, Moore turned her focus to acting, and appeared in a variety of films and TV shows.
Some of her more notable roles included the voice of Rapunzel in the 2010 Disney film “Tangled,” as well as her role as Rebecca on the hit NBC show “This Is Us.”
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