80s - Brother Beyond (2010)
Beyond the World of Moore!
Nathan Moore first coming to prominence by joining the boyband Brother Beyond as their lead singer, in 1987. The groups first four singles, I Should Have Lied, How Many Times, Chain-Gang Smile, and an early version of Can You Keep a Secret? were all written by band members Eg White or David Ben White in collaboration with Carl Fysh, and performed together by the band.
When songwriters/producers Mike Stock, Matt Aitken and Pete Waterman, known as Stock Aitken Waterman (SAW), auctioned off their services to charity, Brother Beyond and their label, EMI won. The first song to be released from this session was The Harder I Try, a Number 2 hit.
After the break-up of the band, Moore was subsequently in the line-up of another boyband, Worlds Apart, that became chart stars in France. After leaving the group, Moore ventured into music management, representing a number of Pop Idol contestants, such as Hayley Evetts.
In the 2000s, he found himself as a reality TV personality, not only as a singer on music revival programme Hit Me Baby One More Time, but also as Lisa Scott-Lees manager on the MTV Europe programme Totally Scott-Lee.
In April and May 2006, Moore appeared as the band manager in the E4/Channel 4 television programme, Boys Will Be Girls, a six-week series featuring singers who had previously been in groups such as the Fast Food Rockers and Scooch. Since then, and no longer managing acts, he is concentrating on his TV/radio work, plus his upcoming new baby with wife, Donna.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with Nathan Moore about his Brother Beyond days, Worlds Apart days, the Manchester School of Acting, and, of course, penguins!
Taking it from the top, and knowing that you first came to prominence by joining boyband Brother Beyond as their lead singer in 1987, it seems that the bands first four singles - I Should Have Lied, How Many Times, Chain-Gang Smile, and Can You Keep A Secret - only made the higher reaches of the UK Top 75 Singles Chart. Was there an early period of time for you that you were already disillusioned with the way things were going, and were considering leaving the band, perhaps? It was quite scary because after 4 singles and 4 expensive videos EMI were getting impatient. They had invested a lot of money in a pop act and it was not really happening. It Is the sort of investment that would not happen to day - they need instant results! So I was not thinking of leaving, but I did feel we were about to be dropped by EMI.
But then, both the band and your record label won an auction to record a track with Stock, Aitken and Waterman! So, just what did you have to do to win this prize - knowing that the end result would be them working on your next single, The Harder I Try - which went on to be a massive #2 hit in the UK! After the Auction I believe EMI asked Pete Waterman to produce the Belle Stars, but we had met Pete at PWL studios sometime earlier and he liked the band - so he asked if it could be Brother Beyond! That was really our stroke of luck. I had no idea what song I was singing till he called me to come down the studio one afternoon. Apparently, they wrote it that morning! That was how good they were back then!
So, just what did SAW do to your song(s) that was not there in the first four attempts that suddenly made you into a boyband phenomenon?! Our songs stayed the same. In fact a version of our album had already been released in Japan. So EMI just added the two songs from SAW, and they were the two hits that sold the whole album.
Being that your follow-up singles all still managed to hit the UK Top 20, subsequent releases delivered lesser chart returns. Hence, then came a year-long break in 1990, which then turned into the group disbanding soon thereafter. What happened back then to stop the bands chart successes - and, in reflection, would you have done anything different to stop it, perhaps? This is where we made the big mistake. We ended up thinking we could write the next album ourselves and spent time in studios in America recording. It was a fatal mistake. We should have really been working with Pete, Mike and Matt as they were writing the songs that the public liked from us!
To this day, as I know you still play live with/as Brother Beyond on the 80s tour circuit, which is your favorite BB song to sing (the one that gets you smiling wide, heart pounding with pride) - and which one, be honest, would you rather not have to sing, but is in the set due to being a fan favorite? My favourite song is The Harder I Try. I love people singing along and seeing peoples reactions. I also like singing Be My Twin. I dont really have any songs I hate singing. I also cover a lot of 80s classics in my set, so it is a real party atmosphere.
Will there ever be an original-member Brother Beyond new album released in the foreseeable future, possibly? No, the band members lives have gone in other directions. We did meet up after the funeral of our manager, Simon Carter who died last year. They are all successful in other areas of the business, so they do not want to be on the stage any longer. Well, not as BB.
Will we see a brand new solo album from you this year, perhaps? I will release a song for the World Cup on May the 17th. The song is called Bring It Home and the project is called Goals Aloud. Artists royalties go to Help For Heroes charity and it is a lot of fun. After that who knows what will happen, but at this stage I have no plans for an album. Lets see ...!
And, just why was the band named Brother Beyond in the first place?! There was two brothers in the bands original line up - David and Egg White. David just one day came out with Brother Beyond and we all said yes, that is it!
After the Brother Beyond scene had died down, you later joined Worlds Apart - another boyband! The band was a multi-national group that featured you in one of its later incarnations. But, it is true you originally lied about your age to Garry Wilson (then manager) in order to front the band? I did lie about my age when I first met the manager, yes! I was 29 by then and I thought this would put him off so I knocked 3 years off my age! I even doctored my passport! Silly really, but we do these things. Funnily, when I did say I was 26 he said I looked young for my age!
Indeed, the band scored a few hits in the UK, but then re-emerged as a 4 piece and became chart stars in France! Why France? What do they get about the band that the UK, or any other country for that matter, dont?! We had recorded a euro dance song called Baby Come Back with a German dance act called Masterboy. We had been doing quite well in Germany at a time when we were trying to get out of our deal with BMG, and the French just loved our euro dance sound. But it was the fact that Take That broke up and we were asked to fill in two songs on Dance Machine - a huge TV in France - that changed everything. It was to be their last ever TV, but they pulled out. And it was this TV performance that broke the band.
Even though the band has not released a record in the UK since 1994, will there be a new Worlds Apart album (with you on it) released sometime soon, perhaps?! We did a best of in 2008 with EMI and did some TV shows to accompany it. It is a shame, but the French are not as nostalgic as we Brits. But we are due to do TV next month in Paris. So Steve will fly in from California and meet Cal and myself in Paris to sing Je Te Donne live on a TF1 show.
Fun Five - OK, it is now time to fire off some quick questions - to allow those that think they know Nathan Moore (Brother Beyond) to perhaps think again!
a) Can you remember your very first TOTP appearance? What song/year was it and at what level of nervousness were you at that whole day? Yes, when you do your first TOTP it is an amazing moment. You watch the show growing up and back then it meant so much to actually be able to sing on it. I could not believe how small the studio was when I was there. Only 50 audience members crammed in and herded from one stage to the next so you thought there were hundreds when watching the TV. I was very nervous, but really happy.
b) Is there one of your songs that you look back on and would today change the title to, or a line/lyric from it - and if so, which one, and why?! Well, How Many Times would not have been a single or a first single. Looking back it was way too pop and not a hit song. Chain Gang Smile was a better record. I should have lied, because it was great at the time!
c) Do you have a recurring nightmare or dream - and if so, how does it usually end? That I come back in another life as BROS! No, they were our rivals at the time but I have met Matt Goss since those days and we have had a good chat. I am glad he is still doing well performing in the States. To still be singing live 20 years on is good going - so well done to him.
d) What is your sweetest, guiltiest pleasure (food wise!) late at night? Chocolate.
e) If you could meet any deceased celebrity, who would it be - and what would be the first question you would ask them? Heath Ledger - why, with all that talent and a child, were you messing with stupid drugs! I would urge him to have become fixated with fitness and health, as most actors are obsessive people, it may have saved him!
During 2005-07, you filmed TV shows such as Totally Scott-Lee, Boys Will Be Girls, and Hit Me Baby, One More Time (although, for my money, One Moore Time would have been better!) - and actually managed the acts of the first two shows! Do you still manage them, who else now, and how was that transition into artist management for you? I do not manage acts any more. I thought I could pass on my knowledge and nurture new talent, but it is very hard once you have been on stage to give up that feeling. If you enjoy it like I do, you cannot deny it to yourself. I had to return to performing - also artist management is stressful!
Word has it you are currently studying at the Manchester School of Acting! My God man, you do not sit around, do you?! Knowing that this School was set up by Mark Hudson, almost some ten years ago now, what is it about said School that brought you in - time wise, monetarily wise? And what are you hoping to achieve whilst there? The school was recommended to me and I always wanted to act. I had done a play with Danielle Westbrook just after Brother Beyond and just now in this point in my life, I had the time to take classes. And that is the great thing about singing, I have lots of time to persue other things in life. And acting is a passion that I would do for fun. So if something comes from it then great.
If asked to record one for charity, what 80s (and possibly cheesy!) pop/rock song would you love to cover today...and why? Everlasting Love could still be a hit again. The Worlds Apart version goes down great in the UK and was never released here.
Lastly, and throwing you a journalistic curve ball, Exclusive Magazine loves Penguins (the flightless bird, not the chocolate bar!) ...do you? I love them too. I went to the Falklands once and we visited some in their natural habitat. We were entertaining the troops there, James Fox and Keedie - two artists I managed.
Interviewed by: Russell A. Trunk
So, if you would like to win a SIGNED Nathan Moore calendar, and you think you know all there is to know about the man himself, just answer this easy question: After leaving the boyband scene behind, Moore ventured into music management, representing a number of Pop Idol contestants. Please name three (3) of them?!
Send us your answers and if you are correct you will be in the running to win one of these wonderful calendars! Just send us an e:mail here before July 1st with your answer and the subject title CONTEST: NATHAN MOORE SIGNED CALENDERs to: firstname.lastname@example.org
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