Eastenders pop stars

Eastenders pop stars

Soap stars turned pop stars – which soap has spawned the most hitmakers? Whether it's Home and Away, Neighbours, Coronation Street, EastEnders or Hollyoaks, we just can't get them out of our heads…

Which soap has created the most pop stars?

Can’t get them out of our head. (Boy your lovin’ is etc…)

We’re used to pop stars’ careers drying up before they hit the small screen for a life in soap: your Lee Ryans, your Kym Marshes, your Shayne Wards. But for many, it’s the other way around. Sometimes a star will be torn between acting and singing and choose the perfect moment to leave, exchanging scripts for a microphone. (We ranked their debut singles here…) Every wondered, though, which soap has produced the most pop stars? This is it, especially for you, the soaps and just how many pop stars (defined as having UK chart hits) each produced.

6. Hollyoaks – 1

Surprisingly, given the youngness and attractiveness of most of the cast, the C4 soap has only spewed forth one bona fide pop star. Stand up, Mr Will Mellor. In 1998, he debuted with a cover of the Leo Sayer “classic”, ‘When I Need You’. It went all the way to number five in the UK charts and he followed it up with a single that reached number 23.

5. Home and Away – 1

Only one here too, Dannii Minogue – though the Aussie soap’s contribution managed an impressive 19 Top 40 hits in the UK, beginning in 1991 (some three years after her sister’s pop career). She bagged nine Top 10 hits including 2002’s ‘I Begin To Wonder’ , which hit the number two position. The Liverpudlian soap (which ended in 2003) treated the world to two cheeky chanteuses: Jennifer Ellison and Claire Sweeney. The former acquired two Top 20 singles in the early ’00s whilst the latter released an album, titled Claire, in 2002, though it didn’t spawn any hits, alas.

3. Coronation Street – 5

Somewhat remarkably, Matthew Marsden teamed up with Destiny’s Child (yes, that Destiny’s Child) on the 1998 tune, ‘She’s Gone’. The Corrie mechanic (he played Chris Collins) managed another solo Top 40 hit in the same year. Corrie also gave us Adam Rickitt, who had three top 40 hits including the smash ‘I Breathe Again’ in 1999. Tracy Shaw’s pop career didn’t quite take off, with her most successful song reaching number 46 in the UK; Bill Tarmey (the man behind the legend that was Jack Duckworth) even managed two hits, including a cover of Bette Midler’s ‘Wind Beneath My Wings’; and Kevin “Curly Watts” Kennedy – former bandmate of The Smiths’ Johnny Marr and Andy Rourke, fact fans – who had a number 70 “smash” with ‘Bulldog Nation’ (see below).

2. EastEnders – 6

In a first (and only) for the genre, a soap actor sang the theme tune to their show. The Easties opening piano melody was given words and the voice of Angie Watts herself, Anita Dobson. Surprisingly, people actually bought this. So much so, it reached number 4 in 1986. But this rather meta behaviour pales in comparison to the chart shenanigans of The Banned in the same year – a fictional group formed on the show. Featuring Sharon Watts (Letitia Dean), Ian Beale (Adam Woodyatt), Simon Wicks (Nick Berry) and Kelvin Carpenter (Paul Medford), they split, not to due musical differences but due to being a bit crap. Gob-smackingly, two hit singles were spawned from The Banned. First up was Nick Berry with ‘Every Loser Wins’, which he played on the show and was used on a number of occasions (often >Heartbeat. Then there was Letitia Dean and Paul Medford who formed a duo but sang another song from The Banned, ‘Something Outta Nothing’. Even more surprisingly, it nearly broke the Top 10. It was a different time, man. And let’s not forget other Walford residents such as Sean Maguire, who totalled 8 Top 40 singles over three years (though never smashed the Top 10); Sid Owen, who scored a Top 20 hit in 2000 with ‘Good Thing Going’ (he also duetted with co-star Patsy Palmer for a Children In Need song, though it didn’t chart). And how could we forget Martine McCutcheon, who hit the top spot in 1999 with ‘Perfect Moment’?

1. Neighbours – 9

Besting all others quite clearly, the thunder from down under, it’s the astonishingly hitworthy output of Erinsborough’s Ramsay Street. In the bottom range we have the likes of: Gayle and Gillian Blakeney (Christina and Caroline Alessi) who didn’t quite manage to trouble the charts with their outings as “The Twins” (a 1991 collaboration with Stock Aitken Waterman – see above) or the rebranded “Gayle & Gillian” a couple of years later; bad boy Stefan Dennis (Paul Robinson) leapt to number 16 with the classic ‘Don’t It Make You Feel Good’ (his follow-up failed to chart); whilst the actress behind untrustworthy Izzy Hoyland, Natalie Bassingthwaighte, joined Rogue Traders and won a number 3 hit in 2006 with the memorable ‘Voodoo Child’. Faring better were: Craig McLachlan, who played Kylie’s brother, Henry Ramsay, earning four Top 40s including a number 2 with ‘Mona’ in 1990 (note for pedants, we know he also starred in Home & Away); Holly Valance (Felicity Scully) clocked up four Top 20s, most memorably with the No. 1 tune, ‘Kiss Kiss’; Delta Goodrem (the shy Nina Tucker) delivered six Top 40 hits, with all but one in the Top 10; Natalie Imbruglia (Beth Brennan) tallied 10 Top 40 hits with half busting the Top 10; and topping this bracket is Jason Donovan (Kylie’s sweetheart Scott Robinson), racking up four No. 1s and 16 Top-40 hits in total. But special mention goes to the undisputed queen of soap pop, Kylie Minogue. With fourteen studio albums to her name since 1988, Kylie boasts SEVEN No. 1 hits, over THIRTY Top 10s and dozens more ditties that reached the Top 40. There’ll never be another like her. Want up-to-the-minute soaps news, spoilers and gossip on your social feeds? Just hit ‘Like’ on our Digital Spy Soaps Facebook page and ‘Follow’ on our @soapscoop Twitter account.


Eastenders pop stars


Eastenders pop stars

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Written by American News

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