Bad Boys Blue

Bad Boys Blue are a multinational pop group that was formed in Cologne, Germany. The group performed many international hits including You're a Woman, Pretty Young Girl, I Wanna Hear Your Heartbeat and Come Back and Stay.


History


Bad Boys Blue was formed in the summer of 1984 by German producer Tony Hendrik and his lyricist wife Karin van Haaren. The original trio was composed of American Andrew Thomas (born 25 May 1946 in San Francisco, USA - died on 21 July 2009 Cologne, Germany), British John McInerney (born 7 September 1957 in Liverpool, England), and Jamaican Trevor "Supa T" Taylor (born 11 January 1958 in Montego Bay, Jamaica - died on 19 January 2008 Cologne, Germany) ??? the original lead vocalist. The debut single L.O.V.E. In My Car failed to make an impression in the pop charts but the follow-up You're A Woman was a success, reaching the top 10 in many European countries.


The group became massively popular in Eastern Europe and South Africa, with the band performing to sell-out crowds in Russia and the Ukraine. In contrast, the group never charted in the UK, and their only charting USA singles were Save Your Love (1993) and Luv 4 U (1994) which became successful chart hits. Those singles were from two of their albums that were released Stateside. Those albums are Bad Boys Blue (1993) and To Blue Horizons (1994).


Charismatic Trevor Taylor provided his unparalleled lead vocal, which proved itself to become legendary, for the group's early, signature defining, hit singles including You're A Woman, Pretty Young Girl, and I Wanna Hear Your Heartbeat, as well as for the entire first two albums. He essentially owns the credit for placing Bad Boys Blue on the "map" with his unique vocal presentation style. However, a second 1987 single Come Back And Stay, from the 3rd album, no longer featured him on lead vocal. Although the track was originally recorded as demo with Trevor Taylor's voice, the producers subjectively chose John McInerney's version. A major pretext which prompted the switch was the song by the Pet Shop Boys, called It's a Sin, which was released a few months prior to Come Back And Stay. The Bad Boys Blue producers made the sound of Come Back And Stay in the image of the Pet Shop Boys song. However, It's a Sin, which already at the time scored very high on many European charts was sung by a voice that was much higher than that of Trevor Taylor's. Hence came the idea to give the song to John McInerney, who also had a higher voice - in order to ensure a greater degree of similarity between the two songs. The Bad Boys Blue producers in a way hoped that it would create a greater chance of success for Come Back And Stay release. This, in turn, created tension within the group which ultimately lead to Trevor Taylor's departure, who understandably did not wish to accept the changes. A noteworthy fact is that Trevor Taylor did not leave the group right away following the switch, and stayed with the group for a whole year, during which he was incrementally phased out from his position of the front-man. During that transitional period his participation as the lead singer dropped first to 60% and then to 20% of songs sung on the 3rd and the 4th albums, respectively. That move was not incidental, for it was a key strategy implemented by the producers to ensure survivability and continuity of their project, that is to make sure in the public eye that both Taylor and McInerney were still present in the group, only that their respective positions had been switched, where the fans were now expected to become accustomed to seeing Taylor appear in the shadow of McInerney. Only after McInerney appeared on enough of new tracks as lead singer, Taylor could finally leave the group. This move was made possible by contractual obligations established by the Bad Boys Blue producers which legally prevented Trevor Taylor from exiting the band prematurely (that is, not until the transition period was completed), and therefore the producers were guaranteed to have a smooth continuation of their project. Had this transition been abrupt, namely if Trevor Taylor was allowed to leave the group right away as he intended to (in order to avoid a soon-to-be established stigma of him being perceived as demoted from his original role), the McInerney-lead collective would have experienced similar problems in the area of public acknowledgment that the formation of the late Andrew Thomas (see below) was facing. However, it is important to recognize that a mere substitution of vocalists on the release of Come Back And Stay was not the culprit itself, for it did not really account for Trevor Taylor's wish to promptly leave the group after a seemingly single substitution incident. That's because the release of the song was just an opportunity, an excuse so to speak, for the producers to remove Trevor Taylor for good from his being the front-man. This stems from the fact that, despite the group's massive popularity, the producers nevertheless were not particularly happy with Trevor Taylor's unique representation of the group as the lead singer, who was the only member of the original trio to regularly contribute his own material for the albums, and whose overall peculiar sound and singing style was broadcasting the group's image in a way that was different from the one subjectively envisioned for the Bad Boys Blue by the producers. In other words, the producers were determined to have their project portrayed solely as they saw fit, and the release of Come Back And Stay was their venue of implementation of the permanent switch - towards the singer who would be more conforming to their idiosyncratic ideas. Such an action on the producers' part was not uniformly accepted throughout the fan base, as it is generally believed that a significant portion of fans was lost following the switch of lead vocalists. After leaving Bad Boys Blue, Trevor Taylor had been involved at some point in various projects, such as Street Noise and Osazuwas, and more recently in Supa T and Umoya, whereas John McInerney went on to perform lead vocal on the majority of Bad Boys Blue's output.


The group has experienced numerous line up changes. In 1988 Trevor Taylor left the group - a year after being gradually demoted from his role of the lead singer ??? but was asked to rejoin the group the following year just for recording sessions of Hungry for Love single that was to be featured on the group's first compilation album Bad Boys Best. Trevor Taylor's departure permanently secured John McInerney's position as the band's new lead vocalist. Trevor Taylor was replaced by Trevor Bannister (born 1965.08.05 Grimsby, England), whose function in the group was mainly to perform Trevor Taylor's hits on live gigs. It is during Bannister's tenure with the band that Bad Boys Blue began taking numerous tours to Eastern Europe and gained much popularity there. Trevor Bannister left in 1993 and the remaining two members performed as a duo. During its entire South African tour, the duo was briefly joined by Owen Standing, who left the group shortly after, and therefore was not considered to be a permanent band member. Multi-talented Irmo Russel (born 1956.03.15 Aruba, Caribbean sea) joined the group in 1995, who in addition to stepping into Bannister's shoes was instrumental in revitalizing the group's creative potential, by becoming a composer, a video director, and occasionally assuming the role of lead singer on some of the tracks. At the end of 1999 Kevin McCoy (stage name JoJo Max) replaced Irmo Russel by joining Bad Boys Blue full-time after being the group's rapper since 1998, but left in early 2003 leaving Bad Boys Blue as a duo again. However, in 2005, Kevin McCoy rejoined Andrew Thomas' Bad Boys Blue line-up.


In 2005 McInerney and Thomas split under less than amicable circumstances. Andrew Thomas went on to form an all-American version of Bad Boys Blue with a former member Kevin McCoy and the new lead singer Herbert McCoy (no relation), and they were said to be working on a new release, with Kevin McCoy being the trio's producer. John McInerney also formed a version of Bad Boys Blue, where he first performed as solo but in the following year he was joined by Carlos Ferreira, and this, presently Poland-based, duo set out to work on a new album, with the French producers MS Project. Between 2005 and 2009 Bad Boys Blue followed a path similar to that of Baccara and Boney M, in which more than one group formation coexisted simultaneously, since the question of who gets to officially use the Bad Boys Blue brand name has not been resolved. Nevertheless, during this time, both formations continued to tour extensively, with Andrew Thomas' formation asserting itself as "The Real Bad Boys Blue", while John McInerney's formation was proclaiming itself to be "The Official Bad Boys Blue".


Trevor Taylor - the original lead singer of Bad Boys Blue - died of a heart attack in his home in Cologne on January 19th of 2008 at the age of 50.


Bad Boys Blue featuring John McInerney, in May 2008, released a brand new album called "Heart & Soul" with 13 new original songs. The album was supported by the release of two maxi-singles: "Still in Love" and "Queen of my Dreams". In May 2009 this formation resumed cooperation with its original label, Coconut, in addition to working with its current production team.


Bad Boys Blue featuring Andrew Thomas, in June 2008, experienced significant changes in personnel. This formation was essentially split in two when Herbert McCoy left the group to continue performing solo for some time as yet another version of Bad Boys Blue. At the same time, Kevin McCoy became the new lead singer of the remaining duo, and a new member, Jerome Cummins, was added to this group's line-up. At the present time, Bad Boys Blue featuring Andrew Thomas completed recording of several brand new tracks, all penned and sung by Kevin McCoy.


Andrew Thomas died on 21 July of 2009 at the age of 63 following a long-term illness at a hospital in Cologne. This effectively left Bad Boys Blue featuring John McInerney as the only remaining version of the group to fully reclaim the title of Bad Boys Blue, since no information is presently available from the surviving members of the other two formations concerning plans for possible continuation.


Line-ups


Bad Boys Blue line-ups by year
1984-1987
Trevor Taylor
Andrew Thomas
John McInerney
1987-1988
John McInerney
Trevor Taylor
Andrew Thomas
1988-1989
John McInerney
Andrew Thomas
1989-1993
John McInerney
Andrew Thomas
Trevor Bannister
1993-1995
John McInerney
Andrew Thomas
1995-1998
John McInerney
Irmo Russel
Andrew Thomas
1998-1999
John McInerney
Irmo Russel
Andrew Thomas
Kevin McCoy
1999-2003
John McInerney
Andrew Thomas
Kevin McCoy
2003-2005
John McInerney
Andrew Thomas
2005-2006

Herbert McCoy
Andrew Thomas
Kevin McCoy

or


John McInerney
2006-2008

John McInerney
Carlos Ferreira

or (unchanged)


Herbert McCoy
Andrew Thomas
Kevin McCoy
2008-2009

Kevin McCoy
Andrew Thomas
Jerome Cummins

or (unchanged)


John McInerney
Carlos Ferreira

or


Herbert McCoy
2009-Present

John McInerney
Carlos Ferreira

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Original Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bad Boys Blue