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‘It’s the best job in the world’: Life according to… S Club

© Leigh KeilyS Club.
S Club.

We caught up with four members of S Club – Jon Lee, Jo O’Meara, Tina Barrett and Bradley McIntosh – as they prepare for their show at the Kelvingrove Bandstand in Glasgow later this month.

How much are you looking forward to coming to Scotland?

Jon: We’re so excited. This’ll mark the first of our outdoor festival gigs this year as well, we’re kicking off in Glasgow. We love our Scottish fans. I always remember they used to film one of the early morning TV shows up there. Normally you come out and see the fans afterwards and sign autographs but we had somewhere to be really quickly so couldn’t stop that day. They were having none of it, so they linked arms and stood in front of the road and made us stop!

Do you aim to make your shows a colourful, vibrant positive experience?

Jo: It’s really important for us to represent who S Club is and what we stand for, which is just a good time, upbeat, positive vibe. We’ll definitely be bringing that, along with all the nostalgia and the songs that people love to hear.

Tina: We want to see some crazy dancing, lose your inhibitions. You don’t have to be cool at an S Club show.

Is there a secret formula to an S Club party?

Jon: Just let go, enjoy yourself, let your inner 12-year-old come out and enjoy it. Everyone knows the songs – that’s the great thing about it, we’ve been so lucky to have so many over the years. Come and enjoy yourself, sing along, it’ll be a great party.

Bradley: We get a lot of people who aren’t necessarily fans who come to our shows and say they didn’t realise how many songs of ours they knew. It’s great memories.

You dedicate part of show to the late Paul Cattermole, how important is that to you?

Jo: Someone asked how we’d mark his anniversaries but I feel like we mark him every single day. Every day there’s always something we think ‘oh, Paul would love this’ or ‘oh, he wouldn’t like that’. It’s important to always honour Paul because he’s such a massive part of this band and we’ll keep that going forever.

Tina: The outpouring of love from the fans has been really overwhelming. They’ve obviously felt it as much as we did when Paul passed so it’s been really nice to have their support as well.

How much does it mean to you to have fans that have been there for your whole journey?

Jo: We’re so lucky. Fans that stick around for 25 years are to be celebrated themselves! We’ve all gone through it together in a way, all grew up and become adults together. They’re off having kids now and some of us have them now too. We’re like one big, very strange family that just works.

Bradley: We have meet and greets where we get to talk to fans and they tell us some incredible stories, about how we saved their lives in some cases,  it was our music that got them through and it felt like we were friends, they were with us. That’s a beautiful thing.

A lot has changed over 25 years, but do you still feel the same going out on stage?

Jo: Yeah, the reaction the crowd give you, they give you so much energy. Even if you go out feeling a bit tired you just look out and they give you so much that it’s impossible not to just love every second of it up there. I find the shows go so quickly.

Bradley: I’ve loved these tours recently. Before, when we were doing singles, being carted around the country doing promo, we didn’t really get a chance to enjoy it. Now we’re focussed on the tour and the fans and it’s been chilled at the same time. My favourite tours yet.

Tina: I definitely appreciate it more now that we’ve had a break and come back. They’ve all come out to see S Club and it makes you feel good, it’s huge. We’re so blessed.

Jo, centre, with S Club 7’s Paul Cattermole, Tina Barrett, Bradley McIntosh, Rachel Stevens, Jon Lee and Hannah Spearritt in the band’s 1990s heyday © Ilpo Musto/Shutterstock
S Club in the 1990s.

What would you tell your younger selves if you could?

Jon: I’d say don’t worry so much. It’s supposed to be fun. All the little niggles in your head, none of it matters, just enjoy yourself.

Bradley: I wouldn’t change a thing. All the mistakes when you were younger make you who you are today. Apart from enjoying myself more.

Jo: Don’t pluck your eyebrows! At one point I don’t think I had any…

Bradley: That was fashion back then though, wasn’t it?

How do your kids feel about their parents being popstars?

Tina: My seven-year-old loves it, it’s made him think he’s a popstar!

Jo: My one’s 16 now and he went through a really embarrassed phase but now he’s into the girls he knows he can use me when chatting them up!

Bradley: My son thinks he is in S Club. He really wants to be in the band. We should bring all the kids together and create a real S Club Juniors. He wants to be the rapper.

What’s your favourite part of being S Club?

Jo: Getting to experience life’s ambitions with my friends.

Jon: Aww, that’s a good one. You’re doing things on a world stage which are big, incredible things, but you don’t have to do them by yourself. You’re doing them with your mates.

Bradley: It’s one of the best jobs in the entire world. We wanted to sing, entertain, act and we did exactly that in our lives. We had a TV show, a band, we’ve performed in front of thousands of people. It’s the whole package.

Tina: For me, it was to be doing acting as well as singing. Bands don’t normally get to do all that so we had the best of both worlds, but we were the hardest working band because of it. We’ve got so many memories, it’s been an experience I’ll never forget and have been so lucky to have.

S Club play Kelvingrove Bandstand on Wednesday May 29. Tickets here.