Home » Where 90s one hit wonders are now – from heroin battle to ‘racism’ storm, horror early deaths and fatal plane crash
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THEY helped define the sound of a decade with dance floor anthems that have stood the test of time.

But unfortunately, these 90s artists could not quite replicate the success of their most famous tracks.

Hanson's single MMMBop become an instant success

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Hanson’s single MMMBop become an instant successCredit: Getty – Contributor
Lene Nystrøm was a member of Aqua

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Lene Nystrøm was a member of AquaCredit: Rex

While some of them completely faded into obscurity, many made several doomed attempts at a comeback.

But for an unlucky few, their lives after their chart success were marred by tragedies, controversies, and personal struggles.

This week, Whigfield, known for her number one smash Saturday Night, revealed the devastating ordeal she went through when her baby died just three days after giving birth.

The Danish singer, 52, who became the first artist to debut atop the charts in 1993, said she had never spoken about the loss until now, despite it happening in 2000.

Whigfield released her number one song Saturday Night in 1993

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Whigfield released her number one song Saturday Night in 1993Credit: Rex Features
Whigfield has revealed that she lost her baby in 2000

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Whigfield has revealed that she lost her baby in 2000Credit: instagram
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She told the Daily Mail: “I had a daughter in 2000 but unfortunately, I gave birth in the seventh month, and she didn’t survive – she survived only three days. 

“So after that I just didn’t feel like having children. I’m 52 so having children is a bit hard.”

Here, we go down memory lane to take a look at what happened to some of the biggest one hit wonders from one of music’s most important decades.

Hanson

The brothers won several awards for their number one hit MMMBop

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The brothers won several awards for their number one hit MMMBopCredit: EPA
The brothers appeared on the US version of The Masked Singer last year

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The brothers appeared on the US version of The Masked Singer last yearCredit: Fox

Brothers Isaac, Taylor, and Zac were teenagers when they found worldwide success with their incredibly infectious tune MMMBop in 1997.

The song reached number one in at least 12 countries including the UK and US and was nominated for two Grammy Awards.

The group were never able to match the huge success of the song and its parent album despite releasing 10 more LPs since then.

Two years ago, bandmember Zac was slammed after his leaked Pinterest account was found to contain memes of a sexist, homophobic, and racist nature.

Some of the posts supported George Zimmerman’s killing of Trayvon Martin, while others compared his right to own guns to Rosa Park’s rights to sit on a bus.

After initially defending the posts, which included suggestions that men who dress as women were mentally ill, he later released an apology.

In 2021, the group appeared on the US version of The Masked Singer and performed as the Russian Dolls.

The band members are all married and have 15 kids among them – Taylor has seven, while Zac has five.

Charles and Eddie

Charles, left, and Eddie were known for the hit Would I Lie To You

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Charles, left, and Eddie were known for the hit Would I Lie To YouCredit: Getty

Would I Lie To You? was the debut and most successful single by pop duo Charles Pettigrew and Eddie Chacon.

Released in 1992, it topped charts across the globe, was the UK’s third biggest single that year and won the pair several accolades.

The group split in 1997 after their sophomore album, Chocolate Milk, failed to sell like their debut release, Duophonic.

Charles was diagnosed with cancer in the late 90s and tragically died at 37 in April 2001 just as he was gearing up for a musical comeback.

Eddie shunned the limelight after their split and pursued a new career as a photographer.

In 2020, he returned to the music industry and released a solo album called Pleasure, Joy and Happiness.

Kris Kross

The duo were known for the unique style of wearing the jeans backwards

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The duo were known for the unique style of wearing the jeans backwardsCredit: Rex
Chris Kelly died shortly after this photo was was taken in 2013

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Chris Kelly died shortly after this photo was was taken in 2013Credit: AP:Associated Press

They became the youngest hip hop group to enjoy chart-topping success when they released a platinum-selling album at the age of 12 and 13.

Chris ‘Mac Daddy’ Kelly and Chris ‘Daddy Mac’ Smith were discovered by super producer Jermaine Dupri, who signed them to his So So Def record label.

Their song Jump and its accompanying album gained enormous worldwide success, topping the US charts and peaking at number two in the UK.

They went on to release two other albums in 1993 and 1996 respectively but split after it failed to match their early success.

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In 2013, two months after reuniting to perform at So So Def’s 20th anniversary concert, Kelly was found unconscious at his home in Atlanta.

He died in a hospital at 34 and an autopsy report revealed he had a mixture of drugs in his system, including cocaine and heroin.

It was later reported that Kelly had an extensive history of drug use.

Several artists paid tribute to him including Nicki Minaj and LL Cool J, who cited the group as an inspiration.

OMC

After fighting among the members, Pauly Fuemana became the only member of OMC

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After fighting among the members, Pauly Fuemana became the only member of OMCCredit: Getty

OMC’s How Bizarre reached number five on the UK charts in 1995 with over 400,000 copies sold and became a hit in several other countries, including the US.

Sadly, this was the New Zealand group’s only success as band members Phil Fuemana and Alan Jansson had a massive falling out after a court battle over royalties in 1998.

Pauly Fuemana later became the only member of the group.

In 2005, Phil, died aged 41 at his home in Auckland following a heart attack.

Five years later, his brother Pauly died at 40 after a long battle with inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy, an autoimmune disease.

Aqua

Aqua's smash hit Barbie Girl became the basis of a controversial lawsuit

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Aqua’s smash hit Barbie Girl became the basis of a controversial lawsuitCredit: 1997 Michel Linssen
The band are still together and regularly perform Barbie Girl at gigs

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The band are still together and regularly perform Barbie Girl at gigs

No one embraced the era of bubble-gum pop music better than Aqua.

The quartet, who have sold over 33million records, consisted of Rene Dif, Lene Nystrøm, Søren Rasted, and Claus Norreen.

Their 1997 single Barbie Girl flew to the top of several major markets and became one of the biggest selling singles of all time.

But their success gave way to controversy when their record label, MCA, was sued by Mattel, the makers of the Barbie dolls in 2000.

In the suit, Mattel argued that the song was an infringement on Barbie and turned the dolls into sex objects with its lyrics.

The case was ultimately dismissed by a US judge, who told the company to “go chill”.

Lead singer Lene dated both René and Søren at different times and even went on to marry the latter in a Vegas wedding in 2001.

However, they broke up in 2017 after 17 years of marriage and share two kids, India and Billy.

The band reunited in 2019 and continue to play at gigs and festivals across Europe.

Milli Vanilli

Milli Vanilli were huge stars after the release of their album All or Nothing

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Milli Vanilli were huge stars after the release of their album All or NothingCredit: Getty
Rob died in 1998 from an accidental overdose

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Rob died in 1998 from an accidental overdoseCredit: AP:Associated Press

Milli Vanilli became one of the most successful pop stars in the early 90s following the release of their first album, All or Nothing.

It spawned the single Girl I’m Gonna Miss You which hit number one in the US and peaked at the number two spot in the UK.

They even won the prestigious Best New Artist award at the 1990 Grammy Awards.

Their world came crashing down, however, after it was discovered that they never sang on any of their songs and were only models lip syncing to other singers’ vocals.

The shame drove band member Rob Pilatus to depression, poverty and drug use – he was sent to prison for three months for an attempted robbery.

As the duo were attempting a comeback in 1998, Rob was found dead at 32 from an accidental alcohol and prescription drug overdose at a hotel in Germany.

Bandmate Fab Morvan pursued a solo career and became a DJ.

La Bouche

Melanie Thornton and Lane McCray in 1997

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Melanie Thornton and Lane McCray in 1997Credit: Getty
Melanie died in a plane crash in 2001

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Melanie died in a plane crash in 2001Credit: EPA

Best known for the 1994 song Sweet Dreams, La Bouche were a German group consisting of Melanie Thornton, Lane McCray and Kayo Shekoni.

The group found success mostly in Europe with their debut album, Sweet Dreams.

Despite Melanie releasing several solo songs after their success, they all failed to chart.

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In 2001, Melanie was among the 24 people who were killed in the Crossair Flight 3597 crash in Zurich, Switzerland, after giving what became her final performance.

In memory of the singer, her bandmate Lane still tours the world.

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