The Seeing Double premiere made headlines (Image: Bruno Vincent/Getty Photographs)
The pink carpets of the noughties had been dominated by extremely low-rise denims, plunging necklines and diamantes galore, with popstars elevating the bar for what they might get away with. However no one was anticipating a member of the UK’s cleanest lower band to hit the entrance pages together with her sartorial selections.
In April 2003, Tina Barrett of S Membership (they dropped the 7 a 12 months earlier after the departure of Paul Cattermole) was chatting with designer Scott Henshall when she talked about that the premiere for the band’s first film, Seeing Double, was arising.
‘I used to be saying I actually wished to put on a type of pink carpet clothes as we had our premiere arising for our film, which was an enormous, huge deal for all of us,’ Tina instructed Metro.co.uk. ‘And he was like, “effectively, I believe you must actually go for it”.’
Henshall had turn into identified for his pink carpet creations, having dressed Jodie Kidd in a really revealing internet of lace for the Spider-Man premiere a 12 months earlier, and determined to supply Tina a pink robe beforehand worn by Erin O’Connor on the runway. The Grecian-style uneven gown featured cut-outs from the bust throughout the torso and on the hips, and relied on a complete lot of pinning, cautious actions and confidence to hold it off.
Tina, now 44, mentioned: ‘He confirmed me the gown and I used to be like, “the place’s the remainder of it?” I believed he was joking. There’s nothing beneath it? In order that’s it?
‘Then I made a decision to attempt it on, and he was pinning it, and I used to be like, it’s not that unhealthy. Then I simply did it, I used to be like, you recognize what, what the hell. It’s an incredible gown, I’d been on tour so I felt like I might get away with it, I’d been working laborious.’
The gown was designed by Scott Henshall (Image: Richard Younger/REX)
Tina felt she had labored laborious on tour so might ‘get away with it’ (Image: Jon Furniss/Getty Photographs)
Tina, then 26, wore the gown to the Leicester Sq. premiere and it was a tabloid sensation. ‘It simply went mad. My telephone was blowing up, saying “look within the papers, you’re in all places”. It was fairly cool, truly.’
Maybe what made Tina’s gown much more of a standout – except for the fixed menace of what would later be referred to as a wardrobe malfunction, because of the Tremendous Bowl halftime present a 12 months later – was that the remainder of the band, Hannah Spearitt, Jo O’Meara, Rachel Stevens, Bradley McIntosh and Jon Lee, had chosen to decorate all in black, with a contact of pink from Jo and Hannah.
‘I don’t assume they knew [what I was going to wear], no. We had no stylists at this level, we simply dressed ourselves. Clearly I had the gown, they mentioned, we’re going to put on this, I mentioned, I’m carrying pink, and everybody was like, okay, no matter. Then everybody wore black and I wore this gown. Oh effectively! It was a enjoyable night time,’ Tina laughed.
The premiere was considerably of a final hurrah for S Membership, as two weeks later, the band introduced they might be splitting up after a farewell single and album, which got here that June. It marked the tip of a five-year rollercoaster for the band, who had been shaped by Simon Fuller in 1998 and hit primary with their first single Carry It All Again the next 12 months. Three quantity ones, 5 quantity twos, a primary album, quite a few TV exhibits, a film, two Brit Awards and even a spin-off band – S Membership Juniors, containing two future Saturdays – adopted.
S Membership 7 had been a sensation (Image: Dave Hogan/Getty Photographs)
Tina was an unique member of Mis-Teeq (Image: Tim Roney/Getty Photographs)
Tina might have taken a really totally different route, having truly been a member of Mis-Teeq with Alesha Dixon and Sabrina Washington, who she met at their dance studio, when she auditioned for S Membership 7. ‘They had been beautiful women and we had been having the most effective time,’ she mentioned. ‘In a approach, I’m wondering what would have occurred if I’d stayed in Mis-Teeq. The ladies went on they usually had been completely big. My path took a special flip, however I assist Mis-Teeq, after all, they’re unbelievable. And S Membership, I like to bits too. However earlier than Mis-Teeq, I’d by no means have dreamed of going right into a band.’
Nevertheless, she ended up becoming a member of S Membership 7, and alongside bands like Steps and 5, they turned a pop phenomenon that had fingers in each pie. With the music got here a TV franchise the place they performed variations of themselves, quite a few endorsements and fixed performances. Within the period of Smash Hits and High Of The Pops, S Membership 7 had been in all places, and it was lots to deal with.
‘You see popstars on TV rising up and also you assume, wow, they’ve this wonderful life the place they’re kind of wafting round and singing and doing one thing fabulous and looking out wonderful on a regular basis. And let me inform you, it’s not like that in any respect. It was a whole lot of laborious work,’ Tina mentioned. ‘You could possibly not even take a breath. I keep in mind pals of mine speaking about TV exhibits and Huge Brother had simply launched they usually had been like, “have you ever seen Huge Brother?”, and I used to be similar to, I don’t even get time to cough not to mention watch a TV present, we had no clue. It was that psychological.
‘I keep in mind when my mum turned spherical to be and mentioned, “I’m simply so bored with seeing you on TV, you’re on each channel”. I used to be similar to, okay, thanks Mum. However truthful sufficient, we’re on each channel. It was loopy.’
Tina is engaged on solo materials (Image: PR)
Many popstars from the identical period backed away from the limelight when the tacky pop period got here to a crashing halt, with the charts starting to favour slicker, extra mature R&B; Beyonce’s Loopy In Love got here out the identical 12 months S Membership break up. However Tina by no means deserted the S Membership label. She remained touring with Jo and Bradley as S Membership 3, turning into a uni night time staple, and was over the moon when S Membership 7 – with Paul – reunited in 2014 for a Youngsters In Want efficiency, adopted by a UK tour.
She mentioned: ‘We’re removed from excellent – there’s seven of us, we could be nightmares. Nevertheless, we had such a giggle on that tour. It was a lot enjoyable, we wished it to go on all 12 months. It was most likely probably the most enjoyable we ever had as a result of the stress was off, we knew what we had been doing and we had all grown up. It was similar to a celebration, the entire thing.’
After beforehand releasing a lot of solo efforts, Tina returned to music this 12 months together with her vogue home name-dropping single Mwah Mwah, which was launched in January. Tina – now a mum to four-year-old son Roman – this week launched the follow-up, Non-public Dance Teacher, which she describes as R&B with a contact of Spanish guitar, accompanied by a video with ‘a little bit of a Flashdance vibe to it’.
‘It’s truly very nice to do one thing that’s simply mine. Clearly it’s been an incredible expertise working with S Membership, we get to carry out to the largest audiences and everybody is aware of the songs, it’s a dream come true. Nevertheless, doing your individual stuff may be very fulfilling, as a result of it’s all you, and also you get to get your imaginative and prescient and persona throughout. And I assume individuals get to know me a bit extra. In S Membership I used to be taking part in that function, so now they get to see the actual me.’
However that doesn’t imply Tina’s completely completed with S Membership 7. She’s nonetheless happy with the music they made, in the intervening time notably loving Attain, the get together basic that has had a resurgence because of Giovanna Fletcher selecting a duplicate of it as her luxurious merchandise on I’m A Superstar, Get Me Out Of Right here! ‘It’s only a track you’ll be able to’t cease smiling to, and once you see individuals’s reactions to it, I’m so proud to be a part of that track.’ And the reunion tour craze that noticed acts like A1 and 911 maintain joint live shows for his or her biggest hits has graduated into full blown comebacks, with Steps notably receiving approval for 2017’s Scared Of The Darkish and reaching quantity two within the charts with their newest album, What The Future Holds.
‘A few of the guys wished to do new music and all of that [after the reunion tour], however we by no means received it collectively, it by no means occurred,’ Tina mentioned. ‘Some had contracts straight after, it was a timing factor. However who is aware of, sooner or later we’d do one thing a bit like Steps. Love Steps to bits, they’ve completed new music they usually’re doing extremely, truly.’
And in a time the place pop is now a badge of honour, it might be the fitting time for an S Membership Celebration. ‘Once I was in S Membership, there have been so many radio stations who wouldn’t play us as a result of we had been pop. We had been actually shunned by all of them, and it did harm our emotions a little bit bit; the cool stations didn’t need us and even the industrial stations thought we had been too tacky. Now, all that appears to have gone. We’ve come out of the shadows, it’s alright to love pop.’
Non-public Dance Teacher is out now.