Musical acts you'd totally expect to see working in Tesco

TABLOIDS love a story about a former pop star in reduced circumstances. But it wouldn’t be the least surprising to see these fronting up the loo roll: 

The Farm 

Madchester-adjacent act known for Groovy Train and All Together Now, the good bit of which was by Johann Pachelbel. Still get on the bill at festivals but that’s in the summer, isn’t it? No harm in putting on the Santa hat and doing shifts at Asda. Northside are on trolley collection. That’s a rough gig in winter.

The Reynolds Girls 

Stock Aitken Waterman act who looked like they still had their Saturday jobs in Dorothy Perkins while in the charts. Which would have been wise. They slagged Fleetwood Mac and the Rolling Stones while being fundamentally shit, in an unfortunate contrast. May by now have worked their way up to Dot Perks management.


Mediocre manufactured groups don’t sell records without publicity, so a career in retail beckoned. Myleene Klass has stroppily clung onto minor celebrity status, and is berating the fishmonger at her local Waitrose about the lack of sea bass when she realises she recognises him. It’s that guy, from the band. Bloody hell, what was his name?

S Club 7

Live by the tweenie, die by the tweenie. Once kids grew out of this super-bland pop act they had little musical talent to fall back on, because rock heroes like Led Zeppelin or Janis Joplin didn’t start out on a CBBC show. Jo works behind the fag counter. She says it’s good money.

Ned’s Atomic Dustbin

It’s statistically likely that most of the thousands of members of short-lived late 80s indie bands ended up working for a big employer like Tesco. The Neds are restocking the courgettes even as you read this, while trying to chat up Miki from Lush on the fresh pizzas.

East 17

In the strange world of 90s boy bands, East 17 were considered more street than pretty boys Take That, and what could be more street than working in Tesco? Instead of flaring up at photographers, Brian Harvey could vent his anger by passive-aggressively pretending not to know where the Marmite is.

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How to quit your job without suffering any adverse effects whatsoever, by Prince Harry

STAYING in a job you hate can be bad for your mental health, so just quit. That’s what I did and here’s how you can too: 

Look for the signs

Are you feeling unfulfilled? Do you get up in the morning wishing you didn’t have to go to work? Are there things you’d rather do, like play with the kids, lie in the sun or simply hang out? All these are red flags that your job isn’t right for you. Walk out if you experience them more than once.

Ignore the chatter

There are people who’ll try and guilt you into staying at your toxic workplace, saying things like ‘we need you’, ‘you’ve got no transferable skills’ or ‘being sixth in line to the throne isn’t something you can actually quit mate’. Ignore them. Put yourself and your family first by unilaterally terminating your employment without consequence.

Take time out

Don’t feel pressured to rush into another role. Instead take the time to find your right headspace by moving to Canada or California and just relaxing for six to 12 months. Don’t be afraid to ask friends if you can borrow a house for a bit.

Reach for the stars

Who’s your dream employer? Reach out to them. People say it’s all about connections, but that’s not true – I’d never met anyone at either Netflix or Spotify, but I walked away from negotiations with millions of dollars. Purely because both they and I realised it would bring us joy.

Don’t be afraid to work part-time

Your employer doesn’t own you. If you’ve stepped back from the rat-race and found your mental health improving, dip your toes in the water with a part-time position like chief impact officer at a professional coaching start-up. In my experience employers will jump to accommodate your needs.

Don’t worry

So many people told me I wouldn’t be able to handle it, just as they’d tell ordinary people whether a supermarket cashier, a nurse or an equerry. They were wrong about me and they’re wrong about you. Because, when it comes down to it, there’s nothing I’ve got that you haven’t got.