Peak UK Chart Position: #15 in March 1996.

Second time around in the charts for this 21 years ago today, where it entered at number 15 – far surpassing the number forty peak the previous July. Dubstar – originally known as The Joans – were formed in 1992 by¬†Steve Hillier and Chris Wilkie in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Halifax-born Sarah Blackwood joined a year later, subsequently replacing Hillier as vocalist. “Not So Manic Now”, a track originally by Yorkshire band Brick Supply, was their third single, and first release to crack the top twenty, peaking at number 18, before the reissue of “Stars” narrowly beat it.

Despite its dreamy nature, “Stars” also benefitted from some club-friendly remixes, in particular by Steve Rodway, under his Motiv 8 guise. As well as scoring a top twenty hit with “Rockin’ For Myself”, and remixing for the Spice Girls (“Wannabe”) and Saint Etienne (“He’s On The Phone”) amongst others, Rodway was also responsible for producing and composing 1996’s Eurovision hopeful and chart-topper “Ooh Aah… Just A Little Bit” by Gina G.

Back to Dubstar, and here is their March 28th 1996 performance on Top of the Pops, hosted – for the final time – by Mark Goodier, who relays a Jim’ll Fix It anecdote in his introduction. Coincidentally, Gina G performed on this same show…



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