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It’s hard to believe, but “Wannabe” by the Spice Girls turns 20 today. Their debut hit was released on July 8, 1996 and was the driving force behind the ‘Girl Power’ theme that grew to an enormous level of strength and influence for years to come.
But “Wannabe” as we know it today almost didn’t even happen…
Firstly, if the girls record company executives had their way, it wouldn’t have even been their debut single. The execs believed the first single should’ve been “Say You’ll Be There” or “Love Thing” but the group stuck to their instincts and were adamant that “Wannabe” would be the first release as they believed it was the best track to introduce their personalities and the Girl Power statement to the world.
But that’s not all… not getting their way, the record company commissioned producers to remix the song as they weren’t convinced it was a hit as a pop song. RnB was big in the ’90s and they felt it needed an RnB spin to it, so the track was sent off to America to be remixed by RnB producers over there. What came back was “bloody awful,” according to Geri Halliwell, and we definitely agree!
Lucky for us all Girl Power reigned and the release went forward exactly how the Spice Girls wanted it, going on to become the best-selling single from a girl group ever, and in 2014 rated the most easily recognisable pop song from the past 60 years.
So how bad does an RnB mix of “Wannabe” actually sound? Listen below…
And just to get that out of your head, here’s the original we all love…!