Sarah Harding: The outgoing Girls Aloud star who refused to turn the volume down
jeanniejeanniejeannie.co.uk BLOG Tuesday 7th September 2021
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
SARAH HARDING OBITUARY
BEGINNING WITH MY THOUGHTS: I am sick to the back teeth with death!!!
Almost daily I seem to be including an obituary of someone I love, respect and most of all I am totally shocked has died. It is horrendous. I feel my Blog is becoming an Obituary Blog. Today is another sad, sad case of a multi talented person.
Sarah Harding: The outgoing Girls Aloud star who refused to turn the volume down
The singer, actor and model was an irrepressible force of nature who endeared herself to everyone, from rock stars to reality TV fans.
Roisin O’Connor (Independent Newspaper) pays tribute
Girls Aloud star Sarah Harding has died aged 39.
Sarah Harding, the English singer, model and actor who rose to fame as a member of pop group Girls Aloud, has died from breast cancer aged 39.
Harding disclosed her illness to the public in August 2020 and said she was receiving chemotherapy. However, in March 2021, she revealed she had been told by doctors she “[would not] see another Christmas”.
Born Sarah Nicole Harding in Ascot, Berkshire, on 17 November 1981, Harding was raised in Stockport and left school early to focus on her music career. She unsuccessfully auditioned for the BBC talent show Fame Academy in 2002 but shot to fame later that year as a contestant on ITV talent show Popstars: The Rivals. There, she formed Girls Aloud with bandmates Cheryl Tweedy, Nadine Coyle, Nicola Roberts and Kimberley Walsh. “I was so nervous, I veered off-key slightly,” she later said of her audition in front of judges Louis Walsh, Geri Halliwell and Pete Waterman. “But I held my nerve and got through it.” She sang “Last Thing On My Mind”, a hit for both Bananarama and Steps.
Girls Aloud’s debut single, “Sound of the Underground”, was the Christmas No 1 that year. The group would go on to score a further 20 UK Top 10 singles, earning a devoted fanbase with their energetic pop sound. Guitars added a rockier edge that stood them apart from the identikit, polished acts that had dominated since the Spice Girls disbanded. Arctic Monkeys frontman Alex Turner was a fan, jokingly offering Harding the chance to replace him at the NME Awards in 2007. In 2012, Arctic Monkeys covered the group’s hit “Love Machine” for the BBC Live Lounge.
Harding’s image was considerably edgier than that of her bandmates; her irrepressible personality endeared her to many. She refused to be bullied; when Boy George dismissed her band as “just a bunch of pretty girls prancing around on the stage”, she cornered him at a hotel bar and forced him to apologise. Her idols were other women – Pink, Madonna, Gwen Stefani – who refused to tone it down out of fear of being branded “too loud”. In 2009, Girls Aloud won the Brit Award for Best Single, for their No 1 hit “The Promise”. Once on stage, Harding grabbed the award and punched the air, telling the cheering crowds: “It’s about time!” That same year, Girls Aloud went on hiatus before reuniting in 2012, touring and releasing a new single for Children in Need, “Something New”. They split for good in 2013.
As an actor, Harding appeared in two St Trinian’s movies and acted opposite Dominic Cooper in the BBC made-for-TV film, Freefall. Her short-lived role as Joni Preston in Coronation Street was “a tough gig”, she said in her 2021 memoir Hear Me Out, as she felt her character was too similar to her own persona. “You might imagine that it would be an easy thing to do,” she wrote, “but I think I’d have found it more comfortable playing someone who was the complete opposite of me”.
Harding had greater success on reality TV, where her outgoing, warm-hearted nature shone through. She won Celebrity Big Brother in 2017 and also entertained fans on Celebrity Masterchef, where she served up “half a pint of limoncello with a few raspberries and a splash of syllabub” as a dessert to judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace.
Though she was viewed as something of a “wild child”, regularly spotted emerging from nightclubs in the early hours, Harding’s life of excess was fuelled by deep-rooted struggles with anxiety and self-doubt. In 2011, she admitted herself to rehab for alcohol abuse, depression and an addiction to sleeping pills, citing her split from her DJ fiance Tom Crane the previous year as a catalyst for her substance abuse issues.
“I’ve done the bravest thing I had to do,” she said. “I reined it in. I took myself to rehab, because I knew it was getting out of control. It takes a strong person to admit that. So I did.”
This matter-of-factness was one of Harding’s most endearing traits. Even in the knowledge that she had just months to live, she said in March that she was “trying to live and enjoy every second” of her life. Revealing her diagnosis was “scary”, she said, but also “the right thing to do”. She admitted, ahead of starring in a stage adaptation of the film Ghost, that she didn’t like to show “weakness”. But there was nothing weak in how she has, undoubtedly, raised breast cancer awareness for thousands of women and girls. She has probably saved more lives than she could ever have known. And she taught many, many more how you should never, ever turn down the volume for anyone.
8 of Sarah Harding’s greatest career highlights: From Girls Aloud to Big Brother
Sarah Harding, Sarah Harding, Nadine Coyle, Cheryl Fernandez-Versini, Nicola Roberts, Kimberley Walsh posing for a photo: shga.png© Getty Images shga.png
SingerSarah Harding has sadly passed away at the age of 39 after battling breast cancer.
Her mother Marie shared the news this morning on Instagram, saying: “It meant the world to Sarah and it gave her great strength and comfort to know she was loved. I know she won’t want to be remembered for her fight against this terrible disease – she was a bright shining star and I hope that’s how she can be remembered instead.”
The immensely talented singer rose to fame on Popstars: The Rivals at the age of 21 in 2002.
She performed in Girls Aloud alongside Cheryl Cole, Nadine Coyle, Nicola Roberts and Kimberley Walsh for 11 years releasing chart-toppers such as Sound of the Underground and The Promise.
In 2015 she released a solo EP, Threads.
Alongside being a stellar singer Harding also had a career in acting and had roles in Bad Day, Freefall, Run for Your Wife, St Trinian’s 2, and Coronation Street.
She also modelled for Ultimo and Agent Provocateur.
In March 2021, she released a memoir titled Hear Me Out and a song called Wear it Like a Crown which reached the top spot on iTunes.
Here are some of the star’s career highlights:
Popstars: The Rivals audition
Popstars: The Rivals is where it all started. Aged just 21, she blew the judges away with her rendition of Last Thing on My Mind by Steps.
Joining Girls Aloud
The group was formed on Popstars: The Rivals, launching Harding and her four bandmates into the charts. Together, they released 20 consecutive top 10 singles, with four of them claiming the top spot on the charts.
‘The Promise’ winning BRIT award
The group’s single The Promise won the Best British Single award at the BRIT Awards in 2009.
Harding played rebellious teenager Roxy in St Trinian’s 2: The Legend Of Fritton’s Gold in 2009. She also recorded three songs for the film’s soundtrack.
Meeting the Queen
Pop royalty Girls Aloud met the true monarch Queen Elizabeth II at the 2012 Royal Variety Show.
As a model, Harding stunned the crowds as she stormed the catwalk for Agent Provocateur in 2012 to Edwin Starr’s War. Harding reshared a throwback to this incredible look on Instagram in 2017.
Appearing on Coronation Street
Harding took to the Corrie cobbles as Joni Preston for a brief stint in 2015.
Winning Celebrity Big Brother
Harding won Celebrity Big Brother in 2017 after a close race to the final with X Factor’s Amelia Lily.
Bonus: In Autumn 2016, Harding appeared alongside Andy Moss in a UK tour of Ghost: The Musical. However, she was replaced mid tour by Carolyn Maitland after pulling out due to the subsequent pain from her injury after The Jump.
Sarah Harding 1981-2021.
‘CAN’T BELIEVE IT’ Sarah Harding gushed she was ‘so so happy’ after making Number 1 on iTunes in tragic last Instagram post
By Chiara Fiorillo
SARAH Harding gushed she was “so so happy” after her solo single Wear It Like A Crown soared to Number 1 on iTunes in her tragic last post before her death.
In her final Instagram post in March, the Girls Aloud star thanked her fans, saying she was overwhelmed by their support.
The singer, 39, had released the song after her breast cancer diagnosis – vowing to donate the proceeds to the Christie NHS foundation who had been supporting her treatment.
Tributes today poured in for the singer, whose mum revealed had “slipped away” after fighting the terrible disease.
And since her tragic death, her last Instagram post has re-emerged where she gushed over seeing her song hit number 1 on iTunes.
Sharing the cover image, Sarah wrote: “OMG. I can’t believe it. Number one on iTunes.
“I’m a bit overwhelmed, but so so happy. Thank you thank you.”
Sarah rediscovered the 10-year-old track as she wrote her new memoir Hear Me Out, which chronicles her singing career and her cancer battle.
“Wear It Like A Crown” was her first solo since 2015’s Threads EP, while she also contributed three solo songs to the St Trinian’s movie soundtrack in 2009.
The singer was diagnosed with breast cancer last August and underwent a mastectomy as well as chemotherapy.
Friends told The Sun Sarah, who would have turned 40 in November, had passed away at home this morning.
A friend said: “Sarah slipped away with her family around her.
“She was very much loved.”
The star’s mum Marie today confirmed the heartbreaking news on Sarah’s Instagram profile alongside a touching picture of the star.
She wrote: “It’s with deep heartbreak that today I’m sharing the news that my beautiful daughter Sarah has sadly passed away.
“Many of you will know of Sarah’s battle with cancer and that she fought so strongly from her diagnosis until her last day.
TOP TWENTY TWO OF THE DAY
TOP TWENTY TWO GIRLS ALOUD TRACKS
Singles Year Chart Placing
1 Sound of the Underground (2002) 1
2 No Good Advice (2003) 2
3 Life Got Cold (2003) 3
4 Jump (2003) 2
5 The Show (2004) 2
6 Love Machine (2004) 2
7 I’ll Stand By You (2004) 1
8 Wake Me Up (2005) 4
9 Long Hot Summer (2005) 7
10 Biology (2005) 4
11 See The Day (2005) 9
12 Whole Lotta History (2006) 6
13 Something Kinda Ooooh (2006) 3
14 I Think We’re Alone Now (2006) 4
15 Call The Shots (2007) 3
16 Theme To St Trinians (2007) 51
17 Can’t Speak French (2008) 9
18 The Promise (2008) 1
19 The Loving Kind (2009) 10
20 Untouchable (2009) 11
21 Something New (2012) 2
22 Beautiful ‘Cause You Love Me (2012) 97
Sadly, very sadly every front oage of the National Dailies were in unison yesterday
REMEMBER: The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.
– Nicolas Chamfort
INSPIRATIONAL QUOTE FOR THE DAY
“No matter what you’re going through, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.” – Demi Lovato
Happiness is…listening to a Girls Aloud track
GRANDAD’S ONE LINER JOKE OF THE DAY
“Here’s a picture of me with REM. That’s me in the corner.” – Milton Jones
Love is… when you are the top of his/her bucket list.
A time to mourn…A time to move on.
1888 Edith Eleanor McLean is 1st baby to be placed in an incubator at State Emigrant Hospital on Ward’s Island, New York.
1976 US courts find George Harrison guilty of ‘subconsciously’ plagiarizing “He’s So Fine” for his song “My Sweet Lord”.
1986 Desmond Tutu becomes Anglican archbishop of Capetown.
2016 Bruce Springsteen and the E-Street Band perform their longest show in America, at Citizen Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – clocking in at 4 hours and 4 minutes.
©2021 Phil M Robinson