As reported yesterday on www.sugababes.com, the Sugababes, on Thursday announced that their line up has now changed with immediate effect. Following a week of intense media speculation, management have confirmed that Mutya Buena has departed the band and Keisha Buchanan and Heidi Range will continue as the Sugababes, being joined by another member to complete the trio.
The lucky new Sugababe is revealed as being Amelle Berrabah, a 21 year old from Hampshire. Amelle, who is of Moroccan descent, commented: “For years I’ve dreamt of breaking into the music business but never did I dream of waking up one day to be the 3rd Sugababe! They’re the biggest girl group in the country and absolutely the only band I would ever thought about joining. When their manager approached me with the offer, I was in such a state of shock that I couldn’t even answer him! Like millions of girls my age, I’ve grown up with Sugababes’ music as a soundtrack to my life and I’ve been a fan of theirs for years. I still can’t believe my luck!”
The band’s manager, Mark Hargreaves, assured fans that Keisha, Mutya and Heidi remain the best of friends. Mutya took the decision because she wanted a break from the heavy media commitments involved in promoting their No.1 triple-platinum-selling new album Taller In More Ways, and their new single Ugly, which is currently enjoying its 3rd week inside the Top 10 UK Singles Chart, and the follow up to their European smash No.1 hit Push The Button.
Mutya commented: “I’ve enjoyed an unbelievable career so far and I’m so proud of what we’ve achieved with Sugababes over the years. My decision to leave the band at this point is based purely on my personal reasons. It was very difficult but definitely not a snap decision. I signed up for being in Sugababes at the age of 13 and have spent my entire life devoted to making and performing music. I think there comes a time when everyone wants to re-evaluate their life and what they want out of it. For me that time has now come. For a long time I have been discussing with Heidi and Keisha our plans for the future and it got to the point where I honestly felt that the commitment I would need to make to Sugababes over the next 12 months was something that would become compromised by me. Clearly that wouldn’t have been fair to Heidi or Keisha or most of all to our fans. Certainly, my departure from the band would never mean the end of Sugababes. We were all in total agreement that a new member would enable the band to continue and I’m delighted that Amelle is taking my place. She’s so lucky to be getting one of the best jobs in the world! And certainly my leaving the band doesn’t mean I won’t be seeing Heidi or Keisha any more. We’ll still be seeing each other and I’ll definitely be taking Tah to all of their gigs.”
Keisha said, “When the decision was made, we had a band meeting to discuss the future. I think for our fans, the one thing Sugababes has come to stand for above all else is our consistent and unique style of music. Obviously, it goes without saying that we will all miss Mutya, but we also knew there was still a place for bringing in somebody new who could help us carry on taking the Sugababes brand of music forward. When we met Amelle for the first time, it all just felt so right. We can’t wait for next year to show her off to our fans.”
Heidi said, “Our management introduced us to Amelle as someone they knew with an amazing voice, who looked great and, just as important, was already a big fan of the band! When we all met her, we instantly knew she was the only person to share the rest of the journey with us. The fans will certainly not be disappointed when they hear Amelle sing. Next year, we’ve got so much to look forward to and although I know Mutya’s still going to be missed, it is so good that we’re parting company still as best friends.”
Check out a photo of the new trio at Sugababes.com.