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Last Updated: Monday, 17 September 2007, 07:40 GMT 08:40 UK
Ellis-Bextor is back on the dancefloor
By Fiona Pryor
Entertainment reporter, BBC News

Sophie Ellis-Bextor
After a two year break Sophie Ellis-Bextor is back with new material

After a three year break from music, Sophie Ellis-Bextor has spent the year back in the charts with a new album and is about to join Take That on tour.

The 27-year-old made her musical debut with indie band theaudience back in 1997.

However, she is possibly best known for beating Victoria Beckham to number one in the UK singles chart with dance anthem Groovejet - recorded with DJ Spiller in 2000.

But while fans may still recall her triumph over Posh Spice, Ellis-Bextor makes it clear that, as far as she is concerned, it is water under the bridge.

"I don't mean this to sound disrespectful, but I probably spend as much time thinking about her as she does about me," she says.

"I'd quite like to go and see the Spice Girls, but I don't really have an opinion on her and I'm sure she doesn't have one on me," she adds.

Juggling motherhood

One thing the pair do have in common is juggling motherhood with a career.

Ellis-Bextor had her first child with husband Richard Jones, the bassist for The Feeling, in 2004.

Like Beckham, Ellis-Bextor is planning to take her three-year-old son, Sonny, on tour with her as she joins the UK leg of Take That's European tour this autumn.

"I'm sort of feeling my way as I go along," she says.

Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Richard Jones
Ellis-Bextor married The Feeling's bassist Richard Jones in 2005

"I have to keep weighing up what he's getting out of it. It's no good having him along just for my benefit if he's going to be bored stiff or not really getting off the bus."

Having a famous mother (Former Blue Peter presenter Janet Ellis) and husband, Ellis-Bextor is no stranger to being in the public eye, yet she still manages to keep her family out of the headlines.

"For the moment I seem to have pretty much the life I want to lead in that respect," she says.

"Any day when I open the front door and there are paparazzi outside I get like: 'What's going on?'

"I think that's partly down to the fact that I've never really played that game and partly down to the fact that my life is pretty boring really. Not really any scoops to be had," she laughs.

Despite shunning the limelight, Ellis-Bextor confesses to having the odd famous friend, including pop's man of the moment, Mika.

School bullying

She got to know him when he toured with The Feeling last year.

"I think he's very bright, and I think he's got a lot of talent. I think he's part of the reason that pop is getting good press again, because he's definitely a pop star," she says.

Mika
I think he's part of the reason that pop is getting good press again, because he's definitely a pop star
Sophie Ellis-Bextor on Mika

The star recently appeared on Mika's set at the V Festival as a backing dancer - accompanied by her son.

"It was really good fun and I don't think Sonny needed me at all. He hardly looked my way, he was bopping away and jumping up and down," she says.

Although life appears to be good for the singer at the moment, she can recall some darker moments as a child.

A group at school took to bullying her and formed an "Against Sophie Club".

"I think it was partly due to the fact that my Mum was doing Blue Peter at the time. I don't know, maybe I was a bit brash about it or something," she admits.

"They would be a bit cruel and would want to go off and play by themselves and not invite me along," she says.

'Content'

Although she insists she did not have a "horrible childhood", the bullying manifested itself with the creation of two imaginary friends.

"It's okay though," she says. "By the time I was 11 I moved to a new school - and a lot of the friends I made there are still my friends now."

Sophie Ellis-Bextor - picture courtesy of Ross Kirton
Ellis-Bextor has already started thinking about her fourth album

With new album Trip The Light Fantastic riding high in the charts, the singer admits she is "really happy" with the success she has had since returning to the pop industry.

"It's been a really great year. I didn't take it for granted that I'd be able to come back," she says.

"I didn't sell my soul to make this record, I did exactly what I wanted to do.

"You sort of feel quite content to have your fate rest with it. It makes you sleep easier at night really," she adds.

It is easy to forget that Ellis-Bextor has been making music for 10 years.

"I'm kind of quite content at the moment," says the star. "I've started thinking about album four, and I've started to realise that maybe that's quite an achievement in itself."

Sophie Ellis-Bextor goes on tour with Take That from 11 October.


SEE ALSO
In pictures: V Festival 2007
20 Aug 07 |  In Pictures
Art explosion from musical Mika
12 Jul 07 |  Entertainment
Mika holds off Brit Awards stars
18 Feb 07 |  Entertainment
Baby boy for singer Ellis Bextor
23 Apr 04 |  Entertainment
I'm pregnant says Ellis-Bextor
01 Dec 03 |  Entertainment
Spiller star slams Posh campaign
18 Aug 00 |  Entertainment

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