Carol Decker (T’Pau)

English musician Carol Decker was born 10 September 1957. She is best known as the singer and front woman for the band, T’Pau, which had international success in the late 1980s. Although Decker’s music is mainly associated with the group, she also released a solo single in 1995, “One Heart,” in support of the Halifax World Cup Rugby League centenary. Decker was born in Huyton, now in Merseyside and educated in Wellington, Shropshire, along with other members of the band T’pau. T’pau were formed in 1986 in Shropshire, taking their name from a Vulcan priestess of the same name in the 1960s sci-fi series Star Trek. Prior to deciding on this name, they were called Talking America on early demos sent to record and publishing companies.Their first hit was the 1987 release “Heart and Soul”. Initially a flop in the UK, it first became a hit in the US Billboard Hot 100 chart, reaching No. 4 after being featured on a Pepe Jeansadvertisement; it repeated the feat in the UK Singles Chart some months later. Their next single, “China in Your Hand”, was their biggest UK hit, spending five weeks at number 1. It also reached the top spot in several European countries, but made little impact in the United States. Their debut album, Bridge of Spies (simply called T’Pau in the USA), also reached number 1 and went quadruple platinum in the UK. The album produced a total of five hit singles including “Valentine”, “Sex Talk” (a live recording of early flop single, “Intimate Strangers”), and “I Will Be with You”.

1988 saw the release of their second album Rage, which peaked at No. 4 in the UK and reached platinum status there, but failed to come close to the level of success of the band’s debut album the year before. It produced the UK Top 20 single “Secret Garden”, though chart returns were diminishing by this point, and two following singles earned very modest success. The third album The Promisefollowed in 1991, which peaked at No. 10 in the UK and earned a silver disc. It included one Top 20 hit, “Whenever You Need Me”, but the band’s commercial peak had now passed and they split up following its release. A compilation album was released in 1993, Heart and Soul – The Very Best of T’Pau, which charted within UK’s Top 40.Another greatest hits release appeared in 1997, and Decker reformed the band with a new line-up in 1998, for the release of a new studio album, Red. The record was not a commercial success, but T’Pau have continued to perform live on a semi-regular basis. Two singles “With a Little Luck” and “Giving Up the Ghost” were released from the album. Decker still made guest appearances on TV shows throughout the 2000s, including Hit Me, Baby, One More Time, Just the Two of Us or The Weakest Link. In 2007, marking the 20th anniversary of T’Pau’s first success, Ron Rogers and Carol Decker released a new single, “Just Dream”, exclusively as an Internet download. In 2008, T’Pau were part of the Here and Now 80s nostalgia tour. To mark the 25th anniversary of the formation of the band, Carol and Ron embarked on a 28-date UK tour during the spring of 2013.

In addition to her musical achievements, Decker has also acted on both stage and screen, including a part in the movie, Nine Dead Gay Guys. TV appearances include Hit Me, Baby, One More Time (in which she reached the final round, ultimately being beaten by Shakin’ Stevens). Decker also appeared in the British comedy series Trigger Happy TV in which she appeared in a “bull in a china shop” sketch (the joke being that she had previously had a hit with the song, “China in Your Hand”), and in another sketch where she accompanied Dom Joly, as he pretended to be a door-to-door salesman.Decker took part in the prime time BBC One show Just the Two of Us which began on 2 January 2007. However, despite singing duets with Beverley Knight, Tony Christie and Natasha Hamilton, she and her singing partner Gregg Wallace were the first to be eliminated from the show, after singing The Jackson Five’s “Blame It on the Boogie.”Decker appeared in the video for Peter Kay and Matt Lucas’s charity single “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” for Comic Relief’s Red Nose Day 2007. She released a single, “Just Dream”, in download-only format in September 2007

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