Have you now or at anytime ever been a member of the popular music band The Sugababes?
Now think carefully before you answer because I was sure I hadn’t and then I remembered I actually was for a very short period in 2006, though that may have just been an alcohol induced hallucination; the girls kicked me out because they didn’t like the blue grass/roots direction I was trying to take the band and Mutya was jealous of the purple unicorn I was given for press interviews. So I was pretty surprised to read-ding dong the witch is dead, Keisha Bucchaman, the last remaining original member of the group, the Alf Stewart if you will of the original line up, has been asked to leave, making Amelle free to return to the group, like a wounded fawn, after her recent few weeks AWOL. Beautiful doe eyed Keisha has been unmasked as being a bit of a madam, which is disappointing for me personally, being the prettiest I assumed she must be the nicest-twenty nine years of American television wouldn’t lie to me. But in a shock twist it turns out her face was lying to us all along and she was allegedly bullying her former band members. Thankfully the despot has been overthrown, the mighty has fallen, the mighty Keisha, the ultimate mean girl at the back of the bus has been toppled- mission accomplished!
And it all started with such promise. The ‘babes” first slunk into our lives in 1998 with an average age of leave me alone and stop ruining my life Mum, Buchanan, Mutya Buena and Siobhan Donaghy really should have been doing homework not starring in cutting edge music videos and perchance that was the problem. Siobhan, like a pale woodland spirit, wafted through the Overload video and then after a brief press release explaining she was leaving for artistic reasons, was gone forever.
With indecent haste she swiftly replaced by blonde scouser Heidi Range, who having seen action with Atomic Kitten, witnessing Kerry Katona in her wild eyed prime, was well able to stand up to a pair of gobby southerners . They were almost a happy family until Mutya slipped up by starting one of her own and getting herself pregnant. Sugababes can smell weakness and a little more than a year after having her daughter, the Babes were searching for a new member. Enter the hero of the hour, fragile but lovely Amelle, blessed with a face like a Disney Princess and a voice like someone who could quite probably sing on a Disney soundtrack, she fitted in immediately.
After a quiet start she quickly became the People’s Babe, with a troubled personal life ( arrested for GBH- charges dropped, sister accusing her boyfriend of raping her- charges dropped, boyfriend attacked with samurai knife, the usual stuff) she was the one we could identify with. However, the Sugababes curse hit again, the girls were doomed to find happiness only fleetingly.
A fierce new haircut, a smash collaboration with a grime star and a lot of close ups in the new video and she felt the wrath of Keisha the alpha King Babe herself. Last week, with Amelle missing and her mother contacting the police fearing she had been kidnapped (as you do) we thought, that’s it, we’d lost another one. It’s like Siobhan all over again. Why do I bother getting attached, remembering their name, when they just leave? A replacement was even named in the form of Eurovision star Jade Ewen. Then in a piece of news that made me feel like Ebenezer Scrooge, when he realizes it was just a dream, the spirits had done it all in one night, it turns out, Amelle was safe all along, not kidnapped, and that it would be Keisha leaving the band after all- hurrah hurrah- buy the biggest turkey in the window my young boy and keep the change!
First Obama elected and now the nice girl beating the class bully, somewhere little Siobhan and Mutya are peering bleary eyed from an open front door realising they are safe at last, safe at last. Actually, I would love to see Mutya, Keisha and Siobhan meet up in some dodgy North London boozer, like criminals returning to a safe house after a heist , turn to see the new Sugababes line up playing on a tinny TV set and look at each other with baffled confusion. The band is Darwinism in bodycon mini dresses, unstoppable, constantly evolving, dispensing with deadwood with efficiency of the artic polar bear, protecting it’s next number one. They will never end. Ever. Imagine a Louboutin heel constantly crushing the toe of the new girl hogging the paps attention and that is the future of British pop. Well, at least it’s better than The chuffing Saturdays…