Bubblegum Babylon
24 November 2002

SHANNON DOUGHERTY: And some enter the big time before they even get out of junior high. The youngest of the Hanson brothers was just 11 when the trio burst onto the bubblegum scene in 1997 and suddenly faced an army of fanatical fans.

ISAAC: The biggest thing that you notice is the screaming. The biggest thing you notice is the volume of the crowd.

TAYLOR: Your mind goes into shock because you can't define the difference between who you were a second ago and still being the exact same person with the exact same set of thoughts and feelings about what you do, same passion, but all the sudden you're being acknowledged for it.

ZAC: You have to, I guess, mature sooner. Learn to deal with things you wouldn't have to.

SHANNON: In 1997, the brothers Hanson: Zac, Taylor, and Isaac, emerged from the middle of nowhere with "MMMBop," an impossibly hooky testament to the power of sibling song.

TAYLOR: You just have a similar sound and you sing together or you think the same or the way you write songs. It can be so dysfunctional and so insane, but if it actually works, I think it's one of the more amazing things. And so, I would hope that we could find a way to not kill each other in the process and actually keep making music and grow.

SHANNON: Hanson's harmonies would usher in a new era in teen pop in 1997. But the Bible-belt brothers were not the first kinfolk to serve up chewy pop.

ISAAC: And you know, I can't tell you how old that gets. What color is your toothbrush? Boxers or briefs? You know, kind of stuff like that.

TAYLOR: I think what you have to do is just do what you do for the reasons you want to do it and hopefully those fans will care.

ZAC: We get put in a teenybopper kind of area and that's purely because of age. If I don't sell enough records and I get dropped off my label I'll still do music. I might flip burgers but I'll, you know, rock out at the 7-11 or, you know, whatever it is.