Boyband Five's Sean Conlon talks British Summer Time at Hyde Park and disagreeing with Simon Cowell (From This Is Local London)
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Boyband Five's Sean Conlon talks British Summer Time at Hyde Park and disagreeing with Simon Cowell
IT is now well over a decade since Five were Invincible or Slam Dunked the Funk but for a generation who grew up them, their sound will always bring raise a smile.
The band, who sold 20 million records in the late nineties, reunited last year on the TV show the Big Reunion.
Only July 6, they will be supporting McBusted and the Backstreet Boys at British Summer Time festival at Hyde Park.
Judging from what bandmember Sean Conlon told Vibe, it looks like we can expect something approaching a charming shambles.
He said: “Expect Five in their usual manner – uncoordinated, dysfunctionally functional, madness that somehow comes together and makes a nice half an hour’s entertainment.”
The gig will be huge for the band who are enjoying a second slice of fame.
Sean said: “We’re a band from the 90s. We’re realistic. We never thought we would get back together again and do this.
“The first time around I was like a rabbit trapped in the headlights and I was dealing with it on a day-to-day basis. Now we can stop for a minute.
“We don’t know how long it’s going to last and we know that things can come to an end. It’s all about the moment.
“Maturity makes you have a distance from it.
He added: “I’m having a much better time in the band than I ever did then.”
Having a baby daughter has also given Sean, 32, more perspective.
He said: “At the end of the day, all we are doing is singing three minute pop songs. It is about fun, it’s about having a laugh.
“All celebrities think the World is about them. Having a child opens your eyes to the fact that you are part of something bigger.”
To say Five have reformed is not quite the whole story - four of them did. The fifth, Jason ‘J’ Brown opted to give it a miss.
And for the Big Reunion live shows, they’ll be down to three after Abz failed to reach an agreement with ITV over his involvement.
Sean said: “The name (Five) was probably not the best idea in the world.
“I think it’s quite funny. There’s three or there’s four and we’re called Five.”
He added: “Abz will definitely be at Hyde Park.
“Normally when we deal with contracts we deal with it as a group and we have one representative. With the Big Reunion, it was slightly different because they approached us all as individuals.
“I can’t speculate because I haven’t spoken to Abz but they didn’t agree terms.
“The three of us didn’t want to put a message out that there was a problem with the band, because there’s not. It was just between Abz’s management team and ITV.
“There’s no animosity towards Abz.”
Though they had a stream of hits, Five’s time at the top was brief and intense. Sean – who was just 15 when he joined - left the band in 2001 shortly before they split.
He said: “It was just relentless work for five years as a kid and nobody in the business supported me and tried help me through it.
“I don’t regret leaving, for my mental health it is what I had to do. If I had been five years older I would have realised I could step away and have a break. But that’s life.”
Despite that, Sean said he had some great times in the band.
He said: “There were some fantastic times.
“People are addicted to drama today, they want to know all the bad things that happened.
“Nobody seems to be interested that is was a great time and we did have a lot of fun.
“Nothing ever topped signing the record deal at the beginning.
“It was just like a dream come true. In my naivety I felt like I had made it. Now I know you can sign a record deal and you can be dropped.
“You don’t think like that when you’re a kid. You think you can take on the World and fortunately we did.”
Five may have taken on the world, but it’s arguable their star could have shone even brighter.
Having been signed by Simon Cowell, the X Factor mogul narrowly missed out on nabbing Baby One More Time before Britney Spears recorded it and turned down Bye Bye Bye, which became a Grammy-nominated hit for Justin Timberlake’s NSync.
Sean said: “We turned it down and apparently it was a crime to turn down a song that Simon Cowell gave you.
“If you turn one down from those guys, you’re arrogant. It wasn’t arrogance. It was just simply we felt the song wasn’t right for us.
“When we look at the songs we did, we broke boundaries of what boybands were doing.
“We had some songs that sounded like NSync and Backstreet Boys and we had some ballads that sounded like Westlife but we have also got Five songs and none of those bands have songs that sound like ours and I’m proud of that.
“If we didn’t dig in we wouldn’t have that.”
Five play the British Summer Time festival at Hyde Park on July 6. Go to bst-hydepark.com
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