A tribute to some of our favourite blink-and-you'll-miss-them superstars of the '00s.
Noughties one-hit wonder Sandi Thom recently got her name into the headlines for the first time in nearly a decade last week.
Sadly, it was not for reasons she would have wanted, as her tearful, expletive-strewn rant on Facebook went viral as she attacked radio playlisters for rejecting her new single ‘Earthquake’. Thom, now 35, had a chart-topping single back in 2006 with ‘I Wish I Was A Punk Rocker (With Flowers In My Hair)’, but has struggled to have anywhere near the same success since.
Sandi Thom, one of the best examples of a 'one-hit wonder' during the 2000s
The pain of fleeting stardom and diminishing commercial returns is one that has blighted many a career before Thom’s, with a good number coming during the decade where the internet grew in its ability to make and break stars in very quick time.
Enjoy a little trip down memory lane with five more of the most memorable artists who had massive hits during the noughties, but who then promptly disappeared without a trace.
Daniel Powter – ‘Bad Day’
One-hit wonders don’t come much bigger than this. With the help of a Coca-Cola ad campaign, Canadian songwriter and power-balladeer Daniel Powter absolutely destroyed charts around the world in 2005 with his first ever single ‘Bad Day’. It was the first song ever to sell two million digital copies in the States, staying at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 for five weeks.
While ‘Bad Day’ remains a radio staple in the States, guaranteed to keep Powter in royalty cheques for years to come, he’s come nowhere near a hit subsequently despite recording two subsequent albums.
Afroman – ‘Because I Got High’
The sole hit single for American rapper Joseph Edgar Foreman, better known as Afroman, came in 2001. ‘Because I Got High’ described how its author failed to clean his room, dropped out of college and missed court dates because, well, he was high.
Incredibly, the resolutely comedy-based song was nominated for a Grammy the following year. Even more incredibly, Foreman’s career continues to this day, with eight albums being released in the 14 years after that mega-hit.
Estelle – ‘American Boy’
British songwriter and rapper Estelle had a couple of minor singles that charted in 2004, but nothing could have prepared her for the massive success of 2008’s ‘American Boy’, which found chart success in territories all over the world with the help of a certain Kanye West.
The album it was on, entitled Shine, also did good business, but her big comeback just two years later didn’t come off as planned, with ‘Freak’ charting outside the Top 100 in her native Britain.
The Automatic – ‘Monster’
Anybody who was at school or university in Britain in 2006 will remember the chart-slaying beast that was ‘Monster’, the one and only hit for Welsh punk-orientated band The Automatic. Featuring a nagging chorus and hilarious, shouty backing vocals, it was the soundtrack to drunken nights at Scream pubs up and down the land.
Sadly, The Automatic couldn’t repeat the trick despite a clutch of similarly anthemic tracks in their locker. 2008 comeback ‘Steve McQueen’ charted at a lower-than-expected Number 16, and all future singles from the accompanying album This Is A Fix were cancelled.
Eamon – ‘F*** It (I Don’t Want You Back)’
Released in 2003, ‘F*** It’ garnered instant success for its creator, American R&B singer Eamon. A diss song aimed at a former lover with a memorable chorus, it was a hit all over Europe, and was the second-biggest selling single of the year in Britain.
Memorably, the song also spawned another one-hit wonder – the ‘reply song’ by Frankee, who claimed to be Eamon’s ex-girlfriend and the target of his vitriol in the original song. Her track, ‘F U Right Back’, actually knocked Eamon’s song off Number 1 in the UK – the only time anything like this has ever happened. Rumours of a cynical marketing ploy by the artists’ respective record labels was rumoured, with British radio DJ Chris Moyles getting away his own spoof version ‘We Want You To Leave’.