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Monday 18 February 2019

'Comeback' proves a comedown Mumba's city concert cancelled

SHE was once Ireland's pop princess, but now Samantha Mumba cannot command a performance in her home town. romoters have axed the singer's 'comeback' gig at Vicar Street this Friday because ticket sales were so appalling.

SHE was once Ireland's pop princess, but now Samantha Mumba cannot command a performance in her home town.

Promoters have axed the singer's 'comeback' gig at Vicar Street this Friday because ticket sales were so appalling. The Dublin singer sold just a handful of tickets for the highly-publicised date.

Samantha's career has reached a lowpoint despite a publicity drive including a 'Late Late Show' interview and a showing on the cover of a weekend magazine.

She jetted back from LA a few weeks ago to rescue the gig in the city centre. The cancellation is an added embarrassment as the Dublin date was being filmed as part of a documentary on her comeback. A camera crew has been following her around for the past six months for a reality show to be shown on Channel 4 in March.

Tickets

Industry sources said the concert was too much of a 'hard sell' because the Drumcondra singer did not have enough material out to push the tickets.

Despite her predicament, Mumba tried to put a brave face on her prospects last night.

"I am disappointed that the Dublin concert has been cancelled but excited about the showcase in London and hoping that when my new album comes out I will be able to perform it live in Dublin, as it has always been my dream to bring my show to my home town," she said.

A statement from her agent at Presence Communications gave no reason for the cancelled gig.

"Samantha Mumba's concert will not now take place this Friday in Vicar Street," it said, adding that ticket-holders can get a refund. Industry sources said the singer would have to sell up to 600 tickets at the 1,500-capacity Vicar Street venue to justify a concert.

Music critic Dave Fanning wished Mumba the best, although he was not familiar with her music. "Wasn't she doing well a couple of years ago?" he asked. "I know very little about big manufactured acts but it seems these things don't last. I was reading about B*witched in Q magazine recently and some of the things the former members are doing, you wouldn't believe. One of them is opening a gym in Oxford." A former Billie Barry kid, Mumba was managed by Louis Walsh at the height of her success. She had hits with 'Baby Come On Over' and 'Gotta Tell You' and landed a part in the 2002 film 'The Time Machine' with Guy Pearce. She wore a ?6.8m spider web diamond dress to the premiere of 'Spiderman'.

Her fortunes seemed to wan when she was dropped by her record label after the first single from a putative second album 'Woman' failed to inspire fans. She still bases herself largely on the US west coast and has not performed a live gig in Ireland for years.

She is believed to be working on a third album, due out in March.

One critic remarked she was now better known as a lingerie model. She recently fronted a campaign for Dunnes Stores line Per Amore.

ANNE-MARIE WALSH

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