The Wanted

The Wanted will perform with Hot Chelle Rae at the Borgata Friday, Aug. 23.

Boy bands, those manufactured lineups of fresh-faced male vocalists, tend to come and go, after their core group of typically female fans moves on to the next big thing.

The Wanted, a British boy band trying to repeat its success across the pond, hopes to avoid being the latest such flash in the pan, according to Tom Parker, one of its five members.

The group's strategy includes the requisite tools of modern-day fame - its own reality show, as well as extensive outreach via Twitter and other social media accounts.

Latest Video

But Parker, who formerly sang with a Take That tribute band, also sees an old-school route to success - putting out compelling music.

"Boy bands are less manufactured these days, even though record labels still hold an interest in putting them across," says Parker, who makes his Atlantic City debut with the group 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 23, at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa's Event Center. "The only way you can do that is by putting out good music."

Even though The Wanted was assembled by producers who held a cattle call that attracted about 1,000 wannabes, the group's members have more leeway to be themselves than one might think.

"I think it can be a bit more open to what you are," Parker says of today's boy band. "A lot of it is social media. Kids can find out anything about you anywhere -everything is at their fingertips.

"We're very honest about our relationships and what we're like with each other. Kids are smart and can see through it."

For Parker, who unsuccessfully tried out for the British reality competition "The X Factor" before getting picked for The Wanted, being in a boy band wasn't even on his career radar.

"I was more into rock music - boy bands weren't my thing," he says. "But I had an appreciation for the success they had in their careers."

The Wanted is gearing up for the Sept. 16 release of "Word of Mouth," its third album, and first full-length record since signing with U.S.-based Island Def Jam.

The new record, whose first single is "We Own the Night," is "quite personal," according to Parker.

"I think this one means more to us - we really took the time to make sure the songs are the best they can be," he says. "It's quite dramatic in places. There's a good mix of songs on there. You've got a few ballads, some uptempo tones. There's something for everyone."

As part of the push to become household names, The Wanted also starred this summer in a reality series on E! that was co-executive produced by Ryan Seacrest.

"The Wanted Life" followed the group as they held their first big party at a Los Angeles mansion and recorded the track "Walks Like Rihanna," which was performed at the White House while the band tried to cope with member Nathan Sykes' vocal problems.

"I really enjoyed it," Parker says of the reality show. "I thought it really portrayed us and our personalities really well. Sometimes people don't get to see that side - they see you interviewed for five minutes on a talk show or a radio interview and they never get to see your character.

"On the show, you really got to see our characters and see the connections with the songs you hear on the radio."

The group is in talks for a second season, but it will depend on whether they can fit it around their touring and promotional schedule.

"I'm definitely up for it –– I think it was a really good thing for us," Parker says.

Having worked his way up in the U.K., Parker says he doesn't mind essentially starting over.

"It's like we're back at the start," he says. "It's a weird feeling because we've had lots of success after working hard for two years in one territory, and now in the new territory, you're back at the start, but on a much grander scale. We're more than happy we've been given the opportunity."

Opening for The Wanted is Hot Chelle Rae, below, a Nashville-based pop-rock band with a strong musical pedigree.

Formed in 2005, Hot Chelle Rae broke through with its second studio album "Whatever," which went double-platinum in the U.S. and spawned three hit singles, including "Tonight, Tonight," "I Like It Like That" and "Honestly."

The group, which performed at a special Aug. 20 pre-concert for MTV's "Video Music Awards," comes by its musical success naturally - Brothers Ryan and Jamie Folles are the sons of country songwriter Keith Folles; Ian Keaggy is the son of guitarist Phil Keaggy; and Nash Overstreet's father is country singer-songwriter Paul Overstreet.

They released the single, "Hung Up," in February as a teaser for their third album. The group has recorded about 20 tracks for the record, which is set for release sometime this fall.

Get our Best Bets at the Jersey shore delivered to your inbox every Wednesday, just in time to plan your weekend!

Recommended for you

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.