1. Spice Girls 2007-08
Hard to believe The Spice Girls had even been around long enough to split up and reform, but after ambushing the world with tiresome Girl Power in 1994, they disappeared in 2000, two years after Geri Halliwell had already buggered off. Then, in June 2007, all five girls agreed to reunite for a world tour but, after pocketing the cash, the group ended the tour early, citing ‘family commitments’, leaving thousands of fans feeling distinctly spiceless. In the 6 months between the reunion announcement, and the tour’s premature end, Tesco paid the girls a million pounds each to plug their supermarkets, causing the more cynical observers to accuse the group of only pretending to reform, so they could profit from the hysteria. And let’s not mention their heftily-paid ‘reunion appearance’ at the 2012 Olympics closing ceremony…
2. The Sex Pistols
No such tomfoolery with Johnny Rotten and his gang. When, in 1994, the original Pistols (minus Sid Vicious, obviously…) decided to play some UK gigs for the first time since 1978, they even called it “The Filthy Lucre Tour”. All the band members were skint, and even Rotten’s sideshow, Public Image Ltd, had stopped coining in the cash. The tour was a huge success, but the reformation was never going to be permanent, and they each went their separate ways once the dates were over. They popped up again in 2002 to play a concert in London, and in 2003 to tour the US, before agreeing to play at a Dutch music festival in 2007 for a big, fat fee; a performance the disappointed festival organiser called “saddening”.
3. The Stone Roses
Ask any industry insider which band was never, ever going to reform, and they’d have all said The Stone Roses. After massive success in the ’80s and ’90s, creative differences and in-fighting saw the band self-destruct in 1995. No way in hell were they ever getting back together, swore each of them, when asked. Until they did get back together, in 2012. With tickets for their Heaton Park gigs selling out in 38 seconds and deemed a success. Ian Brown boasted that the Roses were reforming because modern music was “crap” and they wanted to “uplift the nation”. Rumours that the real reason was because Brown’s ex-missus was about to take him to the cleaners, are, apparently, unfounded.
Pixies were one of the US’s most popular indie bands of the ’80s and ’90s. Black Francis was the nucleus, writing most of their songs and proving a very charismatic front man. Their special brand of alt-rock made them festival favourites, although tensions between Francis and bass player, Kim Deal, were always bubbling away. After a lot of onstage bickering and a forced hiatus in 1990, Black Francis dissolved Pixies in 1993, sending faxes to his fellow band members to tell them of his decision. Inexplicably, it was after the split, that Pixies’ popularity intensified, and after 11 years of silence, Francis could ignore the cash cow no longer, and persuaded the others to reform in 2004. Pixies continue to be staples on the festival calendar, although a “new album” is yet to materialise.
5. Leonard Cohen
OK, so he’s not a band, but he did have to start performing again for purely financial reasons. Canada’s most successful purveyor of misery originally started out as a poet and novelist in the 1960s but, finding little success, turned his hand to songwriting and singing. His introspective folk songs soon endeared him to successive generations of angst-ridden, floppy-haired would-be philosophers. In 1994, Cohen secreted himself inside a Zen Buddhist temple in L.A., beginning several years of seclusion and enlightenment. Whilst there, Cohen’s manager began siphoning off his retirement money, stealing a total of $5m, which was only discovered some ten years later. Skint, Cohen had to leave the monastery and start writing stuff again, and embarked on a gruelling, yet lucrative, world tour in 2008-10, his cheque book sewn inside his jeans pocket.
About author: GoSeethem is a website which compares tickets for all kinds of events even the ones which sell out. The Stones Roses, Coldplay and Mumford & Sons have all recently announced more dates. Don’t forget the fabulous Adele who released her latest album entitled ’25’ very recently. So keep an eye on Goseethem.com for UK Adele tickets, she will be worth every penny I’m sure and will probably be up in Edinburgh, Aberdeen or Glasgow soon.