East 17 reform and announce Islington gig

One of Britain’s best known boy bands, who sold more than 20 million albums across Europe, are on the comeback trail - and have announced a live date in Islington.

East 17, who outsold Take That in their pomp and recorded the legendary Christmas number one Stay, have reformed and will play the O2 Academy Islington, in Parkfield Street, on July 26.

In the early 90s, the band represented the edgier side of the boy band spectrum. They had a string of top ten hits, a number one album and were one of the best known groups in the world.

After an acrimonious break-up in 1997, they have now recorded a new album and are ready to hit the road again, albeit without controversial lead singer Brian Harvey.

The three original members, Tony Mortimer, John Hendy, and Terry Coldwell will be joined by new lead singer Blair Dreelan and a live band as they embark on the seven date tour.

Tony, chief songwriter and driving force behind East 17, said: “Blair is great – he sings like Brian when Brian was at his peak, plus he is a loon on stage, which is ideal.

“The new songs are more dancey, very up and very happy, very positive. We will play the new single on the tour, but other than that we will stick to the songs people know.

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“I hate going to see someone and they don’t play the hits. They want to play their new stuff, but the crowd don’t always want to hear it.

“We couldn’t do a gig and not do Stay - the crowd would end up singing it for themselves.”