Hello Melanie – not spoken to you for a while! How goes it?
I feel like I’m in your life a lot. Because I follow you on twitter. I was so reluctant to tweet but then when I started doing it I got into it and thought it was fun and now I’m bored of it!
I think I’ll get into it when I’ve got something to say. At the moment I’m really getting my head down and I’m working on writing and recording. When I’m travelling and doing my promo I’ll have more to talk about. When I’m in promo I’ll have far more time. Sitting in the back of cars and all that shit.
Who do you love following most?
I’m enjoying following Mel B – she’s mad and bonkers and what’s really nice about twitter is it’s bringing us Spice Girls together more. Not as often as we like. Twitter is essentially keeping us in touch. Victoria doesn’t tweet that much, Emma goes through her phases and Melanie is always tweeting. It’s kinda like you’re still in each other’s lives.
Mel B has turned into Sporty Spice these days with all her exercising! It’s like a role reversal!
Are you saying I’m Scary Spice now? She’s pretty hardcore. The thing is with Mel is she’s always had a great physique but she’s never been into the gym. Since she’s been in LA the lifestyle and the health aspect seems to have gotten her into her exercise. All the lovely weather works wonders for you.
You’re appearing at Body and Soul’s Voicestorm Concert – tell me about it. It’s been a while since you performed solo stuff!
I did a brief appearance at the Jazz Festival up north recently but it was low key. But for me I’m so excited to be doing this gig for such a fantastic charity. In memory of Anita Roddick – it’s something amazing to be able to celebrate her life and raise money for the charity too. It’s also going to be amazing to play the Roundhouse – I’ve never played there before. It’s an incredible venue and Annie Lennox is headlining. Such a lovely lady. I’ve loved her music for a long time. She’s eloquent and lovely and one of those legends that in her presence you feel very comfortable.
And what will we be performing?
I’m going to sing some Melanie C songs and some covers. I’m working on a new pop record, as you all know. And I’ve also been recording some musical theatre songs too. I’m not sure whether they’;ll end up being released yet. I went to performing art college and after appearing in Blood Brothers it seemed like a very good opportunity to get some of my favourite songs together.
For the show I’m going to do I Ain’t Got No from Hair and I’m also covering Dusty Springfield’s I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself. I’m quite nervous about it all because it’s not my usual stuff. I’ll also do some of my hits. I’m going to bring on a guest to do When You’re Gone – James Walsh from Starsailor. He’s a really really lovely guy with a fantastic voice.
And how is the work on the fifth Melanie Chisholm solo record going so far?
I’m just being really adventurous. There’s ideas for rocky stuff, dance stuff, more acoustic stuff and at the moment I’m working with loads of new people and writing loads of songs. I need to see how it all goes and find out what kind of album I want to make. I think eclectic is the style right now. A bit of everything. That’s actually how Northern Star began so it would be nice to recapture that feeling of lots of styles but coming together. There are no collaborations so far but it’s very early days. I’m in the writing stages now. I’m hoping for a single around summer time and an album around Autumn. I want it to be the best album of my career and it’ll be on Red Girl again.
How’s motherhood now – Scarlet’s 19-months old and it has gone so quick!
Scarlet’s incredible. It’s gone very quick. She’s walking, she’s saying a lot and she’s a proper little character. She’s started singing too – so that is very good fun.
Are you watching this years X Factor?
I am indeed. Saturday night was the first night I saw everyone perform. I always liked Katie – I think she’s really interesting. I wasn’t sure how she actually ended up in the bottom two. She seems to have taken a lot of stick.
The good thing about music right now with artists like Lady Gaga is that the pop world is being more creative visually. I think if things look genuine and sincere with Katie then it will work.
I love Cher Lloyd too. To me I think she has the X Factor. Her vocals were a little bit shaky but hey she’s so young. The nerves must be so intense and to get up on the hugest platform on British TV to perform is a big deal. So much of it is charisma. For me Cher Lloyd has that charisma and I think she’ll go far. My favourite performance of the night was Aiden performing Mad World last week. It was so believable and genuine.
Would you have gone on a show like that?
I’m sure I would have gone on a show like that. I auditioned for a girl band at 13 first of all. I would have gone on the X Factor. I think it’s good that people have a good idea of what these shows are nowadays. I used to be quite negative about these shows but I’ve changed my mind. Now people know what they are in for. There are no shocks.
Do you think the Spice Girls could ever be emulated successfully nowadays?
I’m not sure – we were of a moment. There are so many girl bands in development right now. I went along to see one recently. They’re called Parade. There manager is John Giddings. They are cute, there’s five of them and they have a great energy. They are based on the Spice Girls and Gwen Stefani. They’ve got more attitude and they’re not all glamour. They can sing and dance. But they’ve got a personality.
How is everything coming along for the Spice Girls musical too?
It’s all in development right now. We’ve seen the storylines, the characters, the songs that are going to be used. We know where it’s at at the moment and we’re so excited to have Jennifer Saunders on board. She’s an incredible writer and we have history with her from Spiceworld so we trust her ideas.
In the new year we’ll be looking at work shopping and casting. I think at this stage Jennifer and Judy are working hard on the storylines and we feel those ladies are well within their rights to get on with that.
When it comes to the music we’ll be a lot more involved. A lot of the people that we worked with originally – like Richard Stannard – will be involved creatively. And Judy wants to keep us involved all along the way. We’re not going to be there as creative directors but we’re definitely going to be there in the auditioning process in the different roles. We just can’t wait for our songs to be performed on stage every night of the week. All five of us want it to be fantastic and for those songs to live on.
And what about the idea of one final ‘hurrah’ of the Spice Girls – performing at the Olympics ceremony in 2012?
We don’t know anything about it as yet but I’m up for it. It’s a wonderful idea and I think all five of us would be very proud indeed. Let’s petition for it and make it happen.
Tickets are currently on sale at www.voicestorm.org and www.roundhouse.org priced at £40 for standing and £100 for VIP seating. Money raised from the event will go to the help and support of children, young people and families living with or closely affected by HIV. For more information on the concert please see www.voicestorm.org and for a further insight into Body & Soul please see www.bodyandsoulcharity.org