Boyzine – celebrating the forgotten boy bands of the 90s

July 5, 2008

Adam Rickitt and cheese

Filed under: solo artists,Uncategorized — by Kate Perris @ 11:15 pm
Tags: , , , ,

He’s not a boy band, I know, but Adam Rickitt is far too fascinating to let being a solo artist stand in the way of appearing on this site. His music and image took so much from the 90s boy band tradition and he was managed by no less than Take That’s manager Nigel Martin-Smith. Launching his music career on the back of his success as Nicky Tilsley in Coronation Street (replacing an earlier Nicky who failed to grow up to be sufficiently hot so came back from Canada as someone else) Adam made an immediate impact with his debut (or dayboo as they apparently say in New Zealand – see the above video clip) single “I Breathe Again”. The video features Adam breathing heavily and naked in a box, surrounded by menacing lady doctors with clipboards. Short of a guest appearance from the Village People it’s difficult to see how it could be any more gay.

Adam was widely derided for attempting to build a music career around the ability to look good naked in a box. His unpopularity reached a climax at the 1999 Brighton Party in the Park when someone threw a smoke bomb on stage at him. Although I can’t claim to always be on the spot at many moments of historical importance, on this occasion I was there as he was rushed off stage and I asked him about the explosive attack to which his response was “oh yeah, yeah”. And at that moment I abandoned all hope of a career in celebrity journalism.

His singles and album were undeservedly met with decreasing success despite the fact his shirt came off at every opportunity. After appearing in musical theatre, panto and as a last minute replacement for Goldie on “The Games”, “Celebrity Big Brother” must have been calling but instead, he bravely sought a career in politics. With the Conservative party. Being from poshest Cheshire the Tories must have seemed to be the obvious choice and he made David Cameron’s A list of potential candidates and appeared on Question Time (he didn’t feel that the cartoon of Mohammed in a Dutch newspaper should have been censored, if you’re interested). However, it’s hard not to feel that all those topless pictures and the involvement in Coronation Street’s first gay kiss might have made it hard for some more traditional Conservatives to stomach, or so they may have publicly claimed.

Adam’s next move was an even bigger one…to New Zealand, to appear in their top stroke only soap opera, Shortland Street. Unfortunately this only came to the attention of any of the rest of the world when Adam got caught shoplifting a block of cheese and a jar of coffee from a supermarket in Auckland. Fortunately he got let off due to unspecified family problems and stress. Yes, it’s that well known famous person defense, where you can claim that you’ve been working so hard you forgot that you have to pay for things in shops. In his defence it can be claimed that there is something of a tradition of cheese stealing in New Zealand as Martin Phillips of the Chills also got caught stealing cheese (and a banana smoothie) from a supermarket in Dunedin. NZ MP Phillida Bunkle got in on the coffee stealing act shortly afterward with the theft of two packets of Fagg’s coffee although I really only mentioned that so I could say Phillida Bunkle.

Regardless of any illegal activities Adam made quite an impact on Shortland Street during the tense “mystery serial killer” storyline. I was in NZ at the time and New Zealanders seemed to be impressed to have someone who could act to international standards appearing on Shortland Street.


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