I’ll admit, I was a latecomer to the S-O-V party… up until I heard the Ordinary Boys remix of “9 to 5” in St. Trinian’s, she was nothing but a cute face on the magazine covers to me. But that track got stuck in my head, so I gave her first album (Public Warning) a spin, and became a bona fide fan. She’s got a wicked sense of humour, and she knows how to keep her tracks fun and fresh with weird little background voices and FX… so they always reward repeat plays. And you’ve got to admire the chutzpah she showed as a hungry young teen, fast-talking the producers of a film she was acting in to let her soundtrack it as well! Clearly Jay-Z was impressed enough by the demos and performances that followed to sign her to Def Jam in 2006, making her the first non-American female on the label. Sadly, even though “Nine2Five” (as it was retitled) got to #6 in the UK Top 40, and a few of her songs were used in various commercials and computer games, Public Warning itself didn’t exactly burn up the charts. Then in April 2009 she released a second album, Jigsaw, to moderate acclaim, via her very own label “Midget Records”. There are a couple of great stand-out tracks on there, and a couple of okay ones… overall it’s a solid “B”, I’d say, even if there’s less of the punky humour and spirit (spit?) of her earlier efforts… at least nothing on there is quite as painful as “Tango” from her debut disc, so that’s progress! The following promotional tour led to reports of her breaking down crying on stage, and an arrest for assault, which didn’t really bode well, even if these were just isolated incidents. Somehow, this all led to her taking the make-or-break gamble of accepting Celebrity Big Brother’s Faustian pact (which I’ve already bored you with enough).
Aside from the music itself, what fascinates me about Sov is that she is clearly a very beautiful young woman, but she made the definite decision to hide her light under a hoodie (as it were). She’s looking a bit more glam these days, and was often seen touching up her makeup in the CBB house, but she’s still basically a tomboy at heart. One early task required her to wear a sparkly dress to play a magician’s assistant, and she straight-up refused… first claiming that she was “afraid” of dresses, and then announcing that she hates “glamour”. When questioned by another housemate, she insisted that she hasn’t worn a skirt since she was six, but can’t really remember when or why she made the choice. As a wannabe feminist, I respect that, because she could easily have exploited her sex-appeal more if she’d wanted to… instead she brought talent and attitude to the table, and kicked through the “glass ceiling” with a scuffed trainer! Bless her. Still, she did seem to have a peculiar habit of grabbing her breasts and brandishing them at people, in the same way that some men grab their crotches to make a statement… once, after fleeing a “boring” house-meeting/intervention, she sat on a bench in the garden, holding her bosom and sneering “Kiss my t*tties!”, as if that were some sort of insult, rather than a very appealing invitation. I’m not sure how “out” she really was prior to this CBB appearance, but apparently her friends and family have know she was gay since her late teens, and she talked openly about past lesbian relationships on the show. In retrospect, that probably shouldn’t have come as much of a surprise, but I prefer to keep an open mind when it comes to gender-identity. I doubt I had a chance with her anyway, so I’ll try not to let it get me down too much. Sniffle.