The Story of Pop: 2002 (Bonus Tracks)

Before we bade farewell to 2002 one last time (in blog post form that is), we have one more treat for you. If you’ve read and followed the 1999 or 2000 series then you’ll know all about our Bonus Tracks.

By way of thank you for reading along, it’s a blog, Spotify playlist and videos of twelve other fantastic UK chart hits from each month of the year that we didn’t have time to cover on the main series.

But there’s more – as we’ll be doing this all over again from 5th January, as we set the pop wayback machine to 25 years ago with The Story of Pop: 1998! More on that in the New Year, but in the meantime we hope you enjoy this little bonus selection of hits from the year that was 2002.

  • JANUARY: Puretone – Addicted To Bass (Highest UK Chart Position: #2)

First released in his native Australia in 1998, four years later, Josh Abrahams – aka Puretone – smashed straight into the charts at the start of the year with a thudding and totally addictive cut of drum’n’bass, that was boosted by a killer remix from Apollo 440 that made it one of the year’s defining dance anthems.

  • FEBRUARY: S Club 7 – You (Highest UK Chart Position: #2)

2002 was to prove to be a year of mixed blessings for S Club 7 – they started it with another sold out UK arena tour, Carnival, a BRIT Award for Best British Single for their chart topping floorfiller “Don’t Stop Movin'”, and this, their sunshine bright ninth consecutive top 3 hit and theme from their third TV series, Hollywood 7. But by year’s end, following Paul Cattermole’s shock departure from the band in June, they were down to a six piece simply called S Club, and they had a funsize version waiting in the wings too…

  • MARCH: Lasgo – Something (Highest UK Chart Position: #4)

A top 10 hit in seven European countries, including their native Belgium, pop trance outfit Lasgo were licensed for release here by the legendary dance label Positiva, and  took up residency in the UK top 10 that spring, with their debut hit spending an impressive three months inside the top 40. They quickly followed it up with two further top 20 hits (“Alone”, #7 in August and “Pray”, #17 in November) and a Smash Hits award for Best Dance Act.

  • APRIL: *NSYNC feat. Nelly – Girlfriend (Highest UK Chart Position: #2)

Scoring their biggest UK hit just as they took their hiatus (which they are technically still yet to return from officially), America’s biggest boyband of that moment teamed up with Nelly for a remixed version of this, the third single from their third studio album, Celebrity, remixed by producers of the moment, The Neptunes – who as we’ve seen this series, were very big producing for other acts this year too…

  • MAY: Tweet – Oops (Oh My) (Highest UK Chart Position: #5)

This saucy slice of US R&B was the debut single from Charlene Keys, otherwise known by her stage name of Tweet. Hailing from Rochester in New York, and working closely with both Missy Elliott and Timbaland, her debut album Southern Hummingbird launched a couple of singles but this was by far the biggest, hitting the top 5 in early May.

  • JUNE: Kylie Minogue – Love At First Sight (Highest UK Chart Position: #2)

With the all conquering success of her international chart topper “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” in 2001, Kylie Minogue continued to notch up the hits from her million selling Fever album over the course of this year as the world – the US included, where she broke the top 10 – went Kylie mad. Following “In Your Eyes” (#3 in February), this euphoric disco pop belter is widely regarded as one of her best, and just missed out on the top spot to Elvis Vs JXL. The fourth and final Fever single, “Come Into My World”, rounded off the year by reaching #8 in November.

  • JULY: Beyoncé – Work It Out (Highest UK Chart Position: #7)

You can count yourself especially smug indeed at your pub quizzes over the festive season when the quizmaster asks “What was Beyoncé’s first solo single?” and your rival team answers incorrectly with “Crazy In Love”. For it was actually this, another Neptunes production, this time a funk driven, Tina Turner indebted number, that also acted as the title theme from the third Austin Powers film Goldmember, which Ms Knowles starred alongside Mike Myers in as Foxxy Cleopatra.

  • AUGUST: Abs – What You Got (Highest UK Chart Position: #4)

After the chaos ridden implosion of bad boy boyband Five at the end of 2001, the band’s resident cheeky chappy, Enfield via Jamaica ladies’ man, and proprietor of curly carrots, Richard “Abs” Breen, returned to the charts to launch his solo career. It was good for three top 10 hits over the course of the year that followed, this being the first and biggest, sampling Althea and Donna’s 1978 chart topper “Uptown Top Ranking”.

  • SEPTEMBER: Appleton – Fantasy (Highest UK Chart Position: #2)

Meanwhile, sisters Natalie and Nicole Appleton – previously 50% of All Saints, of course, who had also sensationally split at the start of the previous year after five UK number one hits and 10m sales worldwide – relaunched in the autumn under the collective name of Appleton, scoring a #2 hit with this rollicking good slice of funk laden pop rock. “Don’t Worry” followed it into the top 5 in February 2003, along with their top 10 album Everything’s Eventual.

  • OCTOBER: S Club Juniors – New Direction (Highest UK Chart Position: #2)

Formed from auditions held on S Club Search, a CBBC reality TV show, where they were hand-picked by their senior counterparts, Frankie, Jay, Stacey, Calvin, Rochelle, Aaron, Daisy and Hannah were only meant to support S Club 7 on their Carnival tour at Wembley Arena. But such was the huge response to them from audiences, that they ended up signing to Polydor Records and having success in their own right that made them far bigger than the now sextet S Club were, this being the third and final of their triumvirate of #2 hits, following “One Step Closer” in May and “Automatic High” in August.

  • NOVEMBER: Dannii Minogue – Put The Needle On It (Highest UK Chart Position: #7)

Following her guest vocal on Riva’s big club smash “Who Do You Love Now” at the end of 2001 (which made #3 in the charts), Dannii Minogue signed on with London Records to write and record her fourth and biggest studio album, Neon Nights. This risque little floorfiller, co-written by ex-Alisha’s Attic star Karen Poole with Swedish producers Korpi and Blackcell, made the top 10, with more success following in 2003 with “I Begin To Wonder” (#2 in March) and “Don’t Wanna Lose This Feeling” (#5 in June).

  • DECEMBER: Robbie Williams – Feel (Highest UK Chart Position: #4)

Musically quiet for much of the year, save for a guest vocal alongside Maxi Jazz from Faithless on “My Culture”, a top 10 hit for 1 Giant Leap in April, Robbie cemented his solo success further by signing a new deal worth £80m with EMI, the biggest such deal in British music history, in October. The first album of that new deal, Escapology, his fifth studio album, was released the following month, and reached number one, selling 1.2 million copies inside its first five weeks on release to become the year’s biggest selling album, with the reflective midtempo of “Feel” giving him another top 10 hit.

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