Zigazig-ha: The Spice Girls' 'Wannabe' Turns Eighteen Today

"Wannabe," the debut single from the Spice Girls was released exactly eighteen years ago today and yes, holy shit, you are really old.


The single, which sold six million copies worldwide, was the world's introduction to what would become the best selling female group of all time and the most popular Halloween costume throughout the 90's for groups of five girls.

The group co-wrote the song along with producers Matt Rowe and Richard Stannard during their first professional recording session in only thirty minutes.

Looking back, the lyrics stand the test of time because ladies are always in need of a catchy dance anthem that lays it all down on the table like: LOOK, I'm fly as hell and if you want some of this, this is how it's gonna be.

If you want my future forget my past/If you wanna get with me better make it fast/Now don't go wasting my precious time/Get your act together we could be just fine

Other highly important "Wannabe" reflections:

  • The "Wannabe" music video opens with them singing acapella, which is a pleasant reminder that (most of) the Spice Girls can really sing.
  • In retrospect, how did we not notice how little Victoria Beckham participated in everything? Was this as obvious at the time?
  • Both Scary Spice and Sporty Spice are rocking visible nipples through their tops. They are basically fighting the Instagram nipple fight from the past.
  • Scary Spice was already a part of the #naturalhair movement in 1996. I remember loving her hair and also being really irritated when my white friends called it an afro. Not that there's a single thing wrong with an afro, but that's not the style she had. It was just big and curly and AWESOME.
  • Similarly, and although she's not wearing it in this video, there was that constant need to put the black girl in exotic animal prints all the time which is just, ugh.
  • Literally everything they're wearing in the video is back in style. Don't ever throw away any of your clothes!
  • Girl groups are very important and we don't have enough of them anymore. Almost by necessity, they promote the image of a strong, united group of women who dress really well and have fun together. More of that please.
  • While "Girl Power" is largely associated with Riot Grrrl, it was the Spice Girls who really brought the idea to the mainstream.

Putting this on repeat for the rest of the day. Zigazig-ha!


Kate Dries