Boy George and Culture Club return
By guest blogger Mike Brown
The great conveyor belt of the Pop Gods is continuously churning out new acts for the digestion of the voracious public. Just as frequently however, the conveyor belts recycle acts that have been digested previously, whether to their betterment, or their embarrassment.
The next act to repeat on us appears to be Culture Club. The band were one of the defining acts of the 80’s, with the fashion sense, attitude and sound that truly summed up the decade. Their hit, “Karma Chameleon,” has featured on 80’s compilations since it’s release.
The 80s staple, fronted by Boy George, are attempting another reunion to mark their 30th anniversary. As with all these reunions, it’s set to include an album of new material (and undoubtedly a resurgence in downloads of some of their old favorites,) and a worldwide tour.
Like another 80s stalwart, sharing the moniker “George,” Boy George has been more famous of late for his various run-ins with the law, including a stint as a New York street sweeper after he contacted the police to attend a disturbance at his apartment, only to have them find several thousands of dollars worth of Cocaine.
Even with his latest venture into the news, it turned out that an image of Christ he bought was actually a religious artifact stolen from a Cypriot church in the 70s. Whilst there is no indication that George is the one who stole it, it’s still unpleasant publicity that he could surely do without given his recent spate of bad behavior.
This isn’t the first time the band have reformed, or even suggested that they were going to. They reformed briefly in the 90s for an album titled “Don’t Mind If I Do” (spawning the UK#4 hit “I Just wanna be loved”). The clip below was one of more overlooked highlights of the album:
In 2006, another tour was announced, but Boy George refused to join in with the fun (and was replaced by Sam Butcher). The 2012 reformation was even suggested as recently as March 2010, but since then nothing has materialized.
In an interview on the BBC, he confirmed that the 30th anniversary of the band would officially be marked by the new album and a tour. If you can’t believe it, watch the UK TV clip below and convince yourself of it.
Now the impetus seems to be strong, but there is the small matter of Boy George’s own solo album, “Ordinary Alien,” as well as a tour to promote that. George sees his solo album as something of a precursor for what he’s going to be doing with Culture Club in 2012.
In the age when it seems harder than ever for young artists to break into the music industry, it seems unfair, but also understandable that artists who had a go the first time around should have another attempt. The limelight fades quickly these days, so it is fully understandable that there are those who wish to bask for as long as possible.
On the other hand, slightly less cynically, not many bands can claim to be as popular now as they were 30 years ago. Having said that, only time will tell if they are as popular now as they were 30 years ago. They will undoubtedly sell albums and tickets, but is it going to take them to new heights, or simply make them look like the aging uncle singing along to Culture Club hits at any number of functions across the world?