Two decades after their debut single “Wannabe” hit No. 1 in 37 countries, securing their status as girl power legends, the Spice Girls are back! Mostly.
Original ‘Spices’ Geri Horner (Ginger Spice), Emma Bunton (Baby Spice) and Melanie Brown (Scary Spice) teased a live concert reunion via a video released online last month. But two of the band members were conspicuously absent: Victoria Adams Beckham (Posh Spice) and Melanie Chisholm (Sporty Spice). The web address used to launch the video, www.spicegirlsgem.com (GEM — for “Ginger,” “Emma” and “Melanie”) seemed to indicate that only three-fifths of the group would be participating in the special event. Bunton has since clarified that the address did not mean the band was changing its name to Spice Girls GEM or that Beckham and Chisholm would not join the GEMs for the big concert. However, there has been no confirmation that all five Spices will be on hand for the show — wherever and whenever it may be.
When will it be?
For now, the band is remaining mum on the venue and date, though London’s Hyde Park in summer 2017 seems to be a fan-favourite rumour. And Bunton has been quoted as saying there will be “concerts,” plural. She and producer Eliot Kennedy also have confirmed that the group’s members (or at least the three appearing in the promo video) have been experimenting in the recording studio, resulting in a demo called “Song for Her.” Its release and the reunion show are expected to commemorate the 21st anniversary of the band’s 1996 debut album, “Spice,” which sold 31 million copies nationwide. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) seven-time-platinum-certified album (over 7.4 million copies sold) quickly became the all-time best-selling album by an all-female group. Worldwide, the band has sold more than 50 million more albums since, securing its place as the best-selling all-female band of all time.
Critics who have heard an early, unfinished version of “Song for Her” predict it will spur even more sales, regardless of the number of Spices involved. The song — reportedly a self-referential anthem for the band’s members, who are a little older and have more familial responsibilities than they did during the peak of the Spice Girls era — is filled with the type of from-the-gut “girl power” lyrics that helped define the group — and a generation of young women — in the ’90s.
The fact that only 3 of the original 5 have so far committed to the proposal is a shame for fans. It’s clear that Victoria Beckham doesn’t need the money to supplement her income, and probably doesn’t need to do the reunion for financial reasons, Melanie Chisholm on the the hand could surely do with the money.
Should Beckham and Chisholm join in the reunion celebration, it will mark the first time since 2012 (for the closing ceremonies of the Summer Olympics in London) that all five Spice Girls have appeared together on stage. Bunton has promised more details will be announced soon. Meanwhile, the GEM portion of the group is going out of its way to show appreciation to the band’s followers for their dedication — and their patience.
“We have the best fans in the whole, entire world,” brown said in the announcement video.
Now, all those fans are just waiting to find out when they can have what they want, what they really, really want: to show up in person to congratulate the band on the 21st anniversary of its biggest album — and hopefully wish all five members a big “zig-a-zig-ah.”