Shakespear's Sister

WHERE ARE THEY NOW? Shakespear’s Sister

Shakespear’s Sister promised they would “Stay” but soon they were “(You’re) History”, and now they’re back! Yay!

A learned person once declared you can take a girl out of Bananarama, but you can’t take the Bananarama out of a girl! Wise words. Well, at the beginning of 1988, the unthinkable happened. Siobhan Fahey left the group with whom she had had so much success throughout the 1980’s and off into the dark unknown. It wasn’t for long. Later that year she met with American singer Marcella Levy (born in 1952) and began writing songs together.

Originally conceived as a solo project, Fahey adapted the name from The Smiths 1985 chart hit “Shakespeare’s Sister” and began working with producer Richard Feldman, who introduced her to Levy. Levy had recorded a couple of solo albums without much success and Fahey suggested that to distance herself from that part of her career she should adopt a different name, so having been born in Detroit, Michigan, Levy became ‘Marcella Detroit’. Their debut single, “Break My Heart”, was released towards the end of 1988 but, surprisingly for Fahey considering how well she was known, it bombed, failing to chart anywhere at all.

With writing and recording for their debut album taking up most of the first half of 1989, it was in July that a second single was issued, “You’re History” and this time things were very different. The single took off and made it to No.7 in the UK as well as reaching the top twenty across most of Europe and Australia. The album, “Sacred Heart” followed in August and would make the UK top ten gaining a Gold certification for sales of over 100,000 copies.

Two further singles were released in late 1989 and early 1990, “Run Silent” (UK No.54) and “Dirty Mind” (UK No.71). To further the promotion of the album, the title track was used in the hit British comedy film ‘Nuns On The Run’. Videos for all the singles were directed by Sophie Muller (a name that often crops up in Where Are They Now? features!).

The ‘girls’ spent the second half of 1990 and into 1991 writing and recording their follow up album, with the first single “Goodbye Cruel World” being released in October 1991 which only made it as far as No.59 in the UK and nowhere else. A second single came in January 1992, the haunting epic “Stay” but any fears this would go the same way were soon forgotten when it perched itself at the top of the UK singles chart and ‘stayed’ there for eight weeks!

It was the first time in the UK that Fahey had achieved a chart topping single and “Stay” would go on to sell over 600,000 copies there, becoming the fourth biggest hit of the year. It would achieve a top ten placing throughout most of the rest of the world too, peaking at No.4 in America and selling over half a million copies there. Their second album, “Hormonally Yours” was released the following month and would become a huge success, being certified double Platinum in the UK for sales of over 600,000 copies again and break the US album chart, albeit at No.56.

“I Don’t Care” was released in the Spring of 1992 and attained a UK chart high of No.7 and No.55 in the US. “Goodbye Cruel World” was re-released as the next single, this time reaching No.32 in the UK and was followed by “Hello (Turn Your Radio On)” in late 1992, reaching No.14 in the UK.

Sadly personal differences and infighting towards the end of 1992 would ring an end to Shakespear’s Sister, just as the duo were on top of the music world, and at the Ivor Novello Awards in early 1993, Detroit was ‘dismissed’ from the band. She would go on to have a hit album of her own in 1994 with “Jewel” that featured the singles “I Believe” and “Ain’t Nothing Like The Real Thing” with Elton John. Siobhan Fahey kept the name of Shakespear’s Sister alive with three further albums, “#3” in 1996, “Songs From The Red Room” in 2004 and “Cosmic Dancer” in 2011.

But in 2017, after twenty nine years, Siobhan Fahey reunited with her Bananarama chums for a world tour to the delight of the their fans. With sellout shows in the UK, America and Australia, together with an expanded re-release of their hugely successful 1988 “Greatest Hits Collection“, the spotlight was once again on Fahey and in 2019 she announced that both she and Detroit had patched up their differences and had reformed Shakespear’s Sister as it once was! A new single “All The Queen’s Horses” is to be released together with a new hits album and a tour later this year. Welcome back girls!

Singles Party” is out on 19th July, you can pre-order your copy by clicking here.

Shakespear’s Sister are touring the UK in October and November, for dates and to book tickets, click here.

‘Stay'(!) in touch with Shakespear’s Sister through their WEBSITE and their FACEBOOK page

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Written by Christopher Smith

So perhaps you’ve read an article or two that I’ve written and wondered “just who is this character?”! Well I thought maybe it would be time to introduce myself and what I’m all about. Well it’s all about the music! Having been born in the late 1970’s I was heavily influenced by my parent’s love of ‘popular’ music and rock and roll of the 1950’s and 60’s. My Mother always said she should of married Elvis and my father was, and is still, in love with Sandie Shaw! But while my Dad’s tastes stopped in about 1967, my Mum carried on loving music throughout the 70’s, 80’s and beyond. My first memory was playing on the floor whilst my Mother was ironing one day with the radio on, and hearing ABBA’s “Super Trouper” dancing my nappy off to it! Maybe that’s where it all went wrong…?! Having been subjected to all and sundry in my infant years, I finally found my feet in the mid-1980’s and began ‘partying’ to the likes of Culture Club, Stevie Wonder(!), Elkie Brooks and Bananarama to name but a few! The year 1987 would have a profound effect on my listening tastes and from thereon in my life would be dominated with buying and listening to music. Any number of outstanding songs were released and listened to that year, most notably “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and “La Isla Bonita”. That Summer my mind was completely taken over with music and sounds I’d never heard before and I was totally taken in by it all. My father would say “whaaar rubbish you got on naaaaao?” (I’m from Norfolk!) but I was hooked. And it continued so for the rest of the decade and the next. At the beginning of 1988 I ‘met’ my true love and the singer I’ve worshipped more than any other artist or group. You may know of her. She’s from Australia…! Aside from pop music, my tastes are many and varied and continues to grow and expand as I ‘mature’ in age. I’ve always been heavily interested in films and in particular the mechanics of film making and of course film music, so scores and subsequently orchestral music takes up a lot of my tastes and collection. 90’s dance and club tunes also takes up much of the space in my head and I’m surprised my brain has stopped shaking from the years of abuse it took being dragged to nightclubs, often three times a week in my 20’s! I find with each year that passes I regress back to my youth and of course the 1980’s. 80’s music dominates and the lust to see as many 80’s acts and singers play live now is insatiable. I’m still getting into the groove as much as every breath I take, but I’m never gonna give up listening to my heart and pumping up the volume, simply because I LOVE MUSIC…any kind of music!