If you Wanna be my Manager – the rise of The Spice Girls
Written by LBRadio on 4th December 2020
Boy bands were big in the 90s, but there was one obvious problem with them, they were all male. There had been girl bands in music forever and the 80s had a great selection of them, but where was the girl band to represent the next generation. Father and son team Bob and Chris Herbert of Heart Management saw this problem and decided to fix it. In February 1994 the team, along with financier Chic Murphy, decided to hold auditions in the search for an all-female pop group.
by Stephen Payne
There were hundreds of women, many auditions, and a lot of stress, but after months of work, a final few were chosen. These women were Victoria Adams, Melanie Brown. Melanie Chisolm, Emma Bunton, and Geri Halliwell, or as they’re better known, The Spice Girls.
The Group would work hard at Heart management, but something just wasn’t working for them. While they signed on for pop, the songs they were being given were very young pop. There was nothing for them to truly get behind. While at this point the band was named “Touch” they got their later name from a song they worked on while at Heart called “Sugar and Spice”.
Insecure about the lack of a contract and dissatisfied with the management’s directions the band started auditioning with other agencies. After a showcase performance in front of studio execs, the group was inundated with offers. While Heart tried to hold onto them, they had been given too many good offers and decided to go elsewhere. Allegedly to make sure that they kept control of their own work the group stole their master recordings from the Heart management office, certainly an act to go along with their later image.
The group was eventually introduced to record producer Absolute. This meeting meant that they were also introduced to Simon Fuller of 19 Entertainment, who signed them in March 1995. After this the group was on the way up. They toured record labels in London and Los Angeles until they were eventually signed by Virgin Records in September 1995. This is when their name, which was apparently originally coined by Halliwel, would become The Spice Girls.
From then until the summer of 1996, the group would tour the west coast of America while writing and recording tracks for the debut album. Then it came, their big break. On 7 July 1996, the group would release their debut single “Wannabe” in the United Kingdom. With a catchy tune and a great music video, the song was an instant hit. It topped the UK singles chart for several weeks and received double-platinum certification. They had made it.
The Spice Girls would have a meteoric rise over the course of the 90s, with them having multiple hits and even their own film. While they would eventually split with each band member going on to do their own thing, they would always seem reform and do another show, even if one member is missing. Whatever you think of The Spice Girls, their impact on the music scene cannot be understated and no other band quite offered that much true “Girl Power.”