Long before BTS and One Direction, one of the biggest pop bands in the world was a 7-piece group from the UK whose sole purpose was to get the party started. S Club 7 formed in 1998 and went on to achieve huge success, in part due to a hit TV show, quintessential Y2K outfits, and catchy pop anthems, which have gone on to become karaoke staples to this day.
Formed by Simon Fuller, the man behind The Spice Girls, S Club 7 were together for nearly 15 years before calling it quits, spawning four studio albums and a string of hits in that time. Now, Tina, Paul, Hannah, Jon, Rachel, Bradley and Jo are “bringing it all back” with a much-hyped comeback for 2023.
Some members of the Rolling Stone staff were incredibly excited by the news, though others weren’t as aware of S Club 7’s impact since they weren’t around when the group first made waves.
Here, we capture a conversation between S Club 7 fan (and Rolling Stone’s lifestyle editor) Tim Chan and noted millennial (and Rolling Stone staff writer) Tomas Mier about the band’s comeback and what it means for music.
TIM CHAN: S Club 7 announced a comeback tour this week! I’m so excited!
TOMAS MIER: I have no idea who that is.
TC: What? They were like a huge pop group that had a mix of guys and girls in it, so they stood out compared to all the boy bands and girl groups from that era.
TM: So they’re like Now United?
TC: Actually that’s a great comparison since both groups were started by Simon Fuller, the man who also managed The Spice Girls. I guess Now United was his way of trying to replicate S Club 7’s success.
TM: How do you know S Club 7?
TC: I grew up listening to them. They debuted in 1998 and were all over the radio.
TM: I wasn’t even born yet.
TM: This sounds like music from Mervyn’s.
TC: No idea who he is.
TM: It’s a defunct department store.
TC: I’m sure you’ll know some S Club 7 songs. Listen to “Never Had a Dream Come True” — that was a huge hit.
TM: I like that one. I was listening to that earlier.
TC: “S Club Party” and “Bring It All Back” are also iconic.
TM: They named a song after their own band?
TC: They also had their own TV show called S Club 7 in Miami, which aired on ABC Family. It was like High School Musical meets The Real World meets Glee.
TM: What’s Real World?
TM: Why did the group originally break up?
TC: The official reason was to “pursue other projects” but there had been rumors of infighting within the group, jealousy of some of the members’ solo successes and also just fatigue from being in a group of seven members for over a decade. It looks like they’ve resolved all their differences though: in a press conference Monday, Rachel (my favorite member) said the group just wants to “bring some joy and positivity” back to the music scene.
TM: So are you going to see the S Club 7 reunion tour?
TC: The group announced that they are reuniting for a small tour this year, kicking off in October. Unfortunately, they’ve only announced dates in the UK for now. I’d die if they came to the U.S.
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TM: Why did they suddenly decide to make a comeback?
TC: It’s to celebrate their 25th anniversary!
TM: I turn 25 in September!