Hello my name is Annette, and I’m a Backstreetaholic. If you know me then you know I’m in love with the boy band ─ The Backstreet Boys. Admit it…we’ve all had celebrity crushes growing up, whether it was Michael Jackson, Cher, New Kids on the Block, Shaun Cassidy, and so on. Luckily for me I never grew out of that crush. I’ve been a fan for the last 21 years, and started following them on tours about 16 years ago. About four years ago while on a tour in Las Vegas my fiancée dared me to get a tattoo. Not one to back down from a dare I sat through the pain and got a tattoo that read I heart (it’s an actual blue heart to signify the album “Black and Blue” and the song “Shape Of My Heart”) Backstreet Boys. Several years later I decided to make the tattoo even greater and added their faces and signatures (after years of collecting the signatures). I wrote a book “The Girl with the Backstreet Boys Tattoo” to tell my story of why I loved Kevin, Howie, Nick, Brian and AJ so much, and to show that I was not a creepy/stalker fan, which I am not. To purchase a copy of the book visit, www.thegirlwiththebackstreetboystattoo.com.
This past weekend my fiancé Robert and I traveled to Las Vegas and Albuquerque to join in on the “In A World Like This World Tour.” It’s been neat to grow up with the band. Sixteen years ago I was asking my parents for money to go to the concerts, sleeping on hotel sidewalks to meet them, and even having my parents drive me to their shows. Now, the boys offer incredible access by offering meet and greets, after parties and even a cruise (Visit www.backstreetboyscruise.com). If you look closely in the picture you will see Robert and I behind the guys at the after party in Las Vegas, held at Chateau nightclub in the Paris.
Furthermore, over the course of 16 years the band members start to recognize you, and even acknowledge you at the concerts, afterparties and meet and greets. Additionally, 16 years ago I was going to marry every member of the band, whereas now I view them as family. As us fans have grown up we recognize the importance of friendships. I met up with my Backstreet Sisters, Julia and Roxanne, whom I met a year ago at the Hollywood Walk of Fame star ceremony, and have already done two tours with them. We stay in touch via social media including the band in our conversations on Twitter and Facebook. To continue the fun this weekend Robert and I are headed to Kansas City, MO and Omaha, NE to see the concerts and partake in the events.
Each one of us has a passion for something whether it is art, humanitarian work, or politics. Whatever that passion is I suggest you follow it. You never know what once in a lifetime opportunities may come your way, and the people that you meet that have the same desire. The Backstreet Boys have allowed me so many experiences following them on tours, and meeting amazing people that will forever be friends.
Photo Credit: Backstreet Boys, Julia Brown, Roxanne Schmidt, Annette Perez