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Emma Bunton
Free Me

Ah, the tragic lives of pop stars, the most desirable sex icons and most profitable homo sapiens this earth will ever see. But life as a starlet isn't so desirable when you're the pop star living the daily doom in knowing that their success is soon to be a thing of the past. These musicians only have about two good albums before it's time for them to endure the media's cynical eye tearing apart their solo attempts.

The tactless British invasion of 1996 brought Sexy, Scary, Posh, Baby and Sporty Spice onto the top 40 before they could even tell us what they really, really wanted. They went on to sell over 40 million albums. Spice Fever almost seemed as though it were here to stay forever between 1996 and 1999, but that was before Geri Haliwell decided to call it quits shortly after promoting their second album with the Spiceworld tour. Soon after the release of the single "Goodbye" and ironically titled album Forever, the Spice Girls were put on the rack.

Every Spice Girl has gone solo. Geri "Sexy" Haliwell is now working on her third release, as is Melanie "Sporty" Chisholm. Victoria Beckham keeps a promise carrer, due to a cult following for the Beckhams in the U.K. The shyest solo actually came Melanie "Scary" Brown, whose sense of Left Eye-like craziness once seemed to promise an R&B or hip hop album.

In a further ironic twist of bubblepop's sillily sour fate, Emma "Baby" Bunton has been voted most likely to succeed amongst her spicy alumni, offering "What Took You So Long" from her debut, breaking the record for longest-running post-Spice number one hit, a whopping two weeks. Emma Bunton seemed to grow almost overnight after ditching the Baby Spice persona, naming her appearance on the Pokemon soundtrack her last. She released A Girl Like Me, her solo debut, in 2001, boasting four singles in the UK.

Teaming up again with Spice Girl manager/American Idol producer Simon Fuller, Emma spits out her tired 90's bubblegum image on Free Me in exchange for a 60's theme, morphing Bunton into a soul diva, with a bit Motown and Latin Jazz for taste.

Emma co-writes 11 of Free Me's 12 tracks, excluding a cover of Marco Valle's Brazillian samba "Crickets Sing for Anamaria." Cathy Dennis, of pop fame herself with late 80's dance track "Touch Me (All Night Long)" co-writes "Lay Your Love on Me" with Bunton. "Maybe" takes a bit of a Broadway chorus, where "I'll Be There" use influences Dionne Warwick and Petula Clark.

With a big step back in time, a time where pop music didn't have to be a guilty pleasure, Bunton shuns her spicy persona on Free Me, where she is the only member of the clan to shed the alter ego and put out a decent pop album.

Bunton, in earlier days, as Baby Spice

Crystal at 3/04/2005 10:22:00 PM

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