Spice Girls turn 25: world's best-selling female group marks quarter-century milestone

As the celebrated British band marks 25 years since the release of ‘Wannabe’, we look back at the group and solo careers of Ginger, Baby, Posh, Scary and Sporty

With accolades including the title of best-selling female group of all time under their belts, the Spice Girls have another reason to celebrate this week.

The British five-piece celebrates 25 years in the spotlight on Friday, marking a quarter-century since their debut song Wannabe was released.

Geri Horner, Emma Bunton, Victoria Beckham, Melanie Brown and Melanie Chisholm, aka Ginger, Baby, Posh, Scary and Sporty, were formed in 1994 after they answered an advertisement seeking “streetwise, outgoing, ambitious and dedicated” women who could sing and dance.

The Spice Girls became household names after instant hit Wannabe was released in July 1996, reaching the No 1 spot in 37 countries and shifting more than 7 million copies.

Their debut album Spice sold more than 23 million copies to become the best-selling album by a female group in history.

The group later became a quartet when Horner, nee Halliwell, quit in May 1998 citing exhaustion amid rumours of a falling out with Mel B.

Years later, during the Spice World 2019 tour at Wembley Arena, she told the audience: “I need to say something I should have said a long time ago. I'm sorry. I'm sorry I left. I was just being a brat. It is so good to be back with the girls that I love.”

Following the release of their third album, Forever, the group went on hiatus in December 2000, with each of the women releasing separate material. Of all their solo careers, Mel C enjoyed the most success, releasing eight albums altogether, while her debut album, Northern Star, sold more than four million copies worldwide.

On June 28, 2007, all five of the Spice Girls held a press conference to reveal they were reuniting for a world tour, with each pocketing a rumoured $20 million.

They next reunited for the closing ceremony of the London 2012 Summer Olympics, arriving on top of black London taxis and performing a medley of their biggest hits.

For the Spice World – 2019 UK Tour, the group continued as a four-piece after Victoria Beckham declined to take part to focus on her fashion business.

“We’ve had so many ups and downs in our friendships, in our careers, in our lives as Spice Girls,” Mel C recently told the NME. “And just that acceptance that we are all absolute pains in the backside, but we love each other dearly.”

Scroll through the gallery for 25 photos of the Spice Girls through the years …

Updated: July 9th 2021, 4:12 AM
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