Welcome. Let’s go into The 5 Multicultural Things We Learnt from Mel B.
NUMBER ONE: Optimistic
Melanie Janine Brown was born on May 29th, 1975 and grew up in a mix-heritage household in Leeds, England.# with her mother, Andrea Dixon, is white British, whilst her father, Martin Brown, is from Saint Kitts and Nevis, a small country in the Caribbean, being raised alongside her younger sister, Daniele. Mel’s early life coincided with a period of social unrest, and transformation in Britain, with working class families being hit hard during this period. Growing up on a Yorkshire council estate as a mixed-race child, wasn’t always an easy experience for Mel but the circumstances didn’t stop her from working hard and pursuing her dreams. Thanks to Mel’s ambition and dedication, she had the opportunity to take up dance, singing and drama lessons in Leeds, cultivating her now established talents.
NUMBER TWO: Passion
She studied performing arts at Intake High School in Leeds, later working as a dancer, but her big break came in 1993. At the young age of 18, Mel found an Ad in the entertainment industry news outlet ‘The Stage’, for an all-female pop act called “Spice Girls”. After auditioning, she was accepted into the group ahead of 400 other women who also applied, joining Geri Halliwell, Victoria Beckham, Emma Bunton and Melanie Chisholm on the path to Global success. In 1995, Spice Girls signed with Virgin Records. Their debut single ‘Wannabe’ exceeded all expectations, becoming an overnight pop sensation. The song hit No. 1 in more than 37 countries and became the biggest-selling single by an all-female group, instituting them as a global phenomenon.
NUMBER THREE: Gratitude
Around this time, the Spice Girls also adopted their iconic nicknames with Mel being “Scary Spice”, because of her big personality and loud voice. Their debut album, ‘Spice’ was also a huge worldwide success. It sold 30 million copies worldwide and became the biggest-selling album in music history by a girl group. In 1997, the Spice Girls made their debut in the United States, quickly entering the Billboard charts and later that year released their second full-length album, ‘Spiceworld’. It included hits such as “Spice Up Your Life” and “Too Much” which entered the UK Albums Chart at number one, making it the group’s 6th consecutive number one hit single in the UK.
NUMBER FOUR: Discipline
In 1998, at the height of their success, Halliwell left the band, blaming differences between the members and the demanding lifestyle for her exit. The Spice Girls ended up releasing a final album “Forever” without “Ginger Spice”, known as Geri in 2000, before taking separate paths. This marked a new beginning for Mel B, as she started her solo career with hits such as,`I want You Back” which reached No.1 in the UK, and her debut solo album “Hot”. Her early solo years are marked by a number of projects in TV and entertainment. In 1999, she was the host of Pure Naughty, a weekly BBC2 magazine show focusing on black music. Mel was also part of Channel’s 4 documentary “Voodoo Princess” in 2002, presenting African culture to a wider TV audience. For the show she travelled to West Africa to discover the fate of her father’s ancestors and explored the traditional religions of this part of the world.
NUMBER FIVE: Humility
Following her success in music, tv and theatre, Mel B. has since established herself as a television and talent-show personality. She’s been a judge and panelist for The X Factor, America’s Got Talent, Britain’s Next Top Model and Loose Women in the UK, USA and Australia. She published her memoir, Brutally Honest, about her devastating experience of domestic violence and controlling behaviour from her ex-husband Stephen Belafonte. Mel also spoke about checking into a clinic to battle issues with alcohol and post-traumatic stress disorder, citing her divorce and the death of her father, who passed away from cancer as the main reasons. Mel B became a patron of the domestic violence survivors’ charity, Women’s Aid in 2018. Mel B further used her influence for positive change back in 2001, when she also became a Blackliners patron, educating ethnic minority communities around the subject of HIV prevention.
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0:00 – Intro
1:32 – Optimistic
2:28 – Passion
3:23 – Gratitude
4:07 – Discipline
5:21 – Humility
7:40 – Multicultural Campaigns
7:46 – Closing Remarks
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