This one is interesting because it features a unlikely combination that seems rather odd even now. One notable thing about pop music over the years is just how many careers have been launched by soap stars, with varying levels of success. For a while, people who had appeared in Australian soaps such as Neighbours including Kylie Minogue and Jason Donovan, did much better than any of the British ones.
By the mid-90s, there had been barely any hit singles released by cast members of Coronation Street. Although after some of the major changes in 1997, there were many more younger cast members, and some of them had a go. These included Tracy Shaw (who played hairdresser Maxine), who released a cover of Lonnie Gordon’s “Happenin’ All Over Again” in 1998 that didn’t make the Top 40, Adam Rickitt, (who played Nick), who had a Top Ten hit in 1999 and also appeared on the cover of Smash Hits, and this one.
In July 1998 Matthew Marsden (who was described by one pop music magazine as “Matthew Marsbar”) who played hunky mechanic Chris Collins (which coincidentally is the real name of Frank Skinner, who did have a chart-topping single in 1998 with “Three Lions ’98”), released his first single “The Heart’s Lone Desire”, which just missed the Top Ten, but it’s the next one that has the most interesting story.
In November 1998 his second and final single, a cover of “She’s Gone”, was released, that was first made famous by Hall And Oates in the 70s. This was a duet with Destiny’s Child, who at this point were still on their original line-up of a quartet, they’d only had one Top Ten hit in the UK, and this was credited to “Matthew Marsden Featuring Destiny’s Child”. About a year or two after this, they would be transformed into high-profile chart-topping superstars.
But it is very odd looking back to think that as far as pop music goes, for about five minutes, some bloke off Coronation Street was more famous than Beyoncé. “She’s Gone” reached only no. 24, and not long after this, Matthew was dropped by his label, which was a real shock, although probably only if you read Inside Soap. I’m not entirely sure that his album was ever released. He has gone on to appear in some films though. And the video doesn’t seem to be online at the moment either, what’s that about?