The Ordinary Boys were an English ska/rock group from Worthing. Originally known as Next in Line, they released three records of Jam/Specials/Smiths-influenced Britpop between 2003 and 2006 to moderate commercial success and critical acclaim. The band went on hiatus in 2007 and announced their official dissolution in 2008.
The band is heavily influenced by the Mod Revival, Britpop, and various 1980s English bands. They have successfully built a large and loyal army of fans known as “The Ordinary Army”.
Its members are Samuel Preston, who likes to be known as Preston, (vocals, guitar), William J. Brown (guitar), James Gregory (bass), and Simon Goldring (drums), who replaced Charles “Chuck” Stanley in 2005. Their influences include The Smiths (their name comes from a Morrissey song), The Jam, The Clash, and The Specials (a cover of the song “Little Bitch” appeared on their debut album, and singer Terry Hall appeared in the video for “Seaside”) amongst other groups. Among their non-English influences are The Ramones, and they occasionally perform covers of their songs live.
The group released their debut album Over the Counter Culture (the name also being taken from a Morrissey song) on July 5, 2004. Produced by Blur and The Smiths collaborator Stephen Street, the album received critical praise and spawned the singles “Maybe Someday”, “Week in Week out”, “Talk Talk Talk”, and “Seaside”. The title track, “Over the Counter Culture”, was featured in the soundtrack for Burnout 3: Takedown.
In 2005, the band released the album Brassbound with a ska feel to it. Ranking Junior, son of Ranking Roger of The Beat, toasted on their single, “Boys Will Be Boys”, which became the biggest hit of their career so far. The second single from the album was “Life Will Be the Death of Me”.
In January 2006, Preston appeared on the British hit reality TV show, Celebrity Big Brother, and finished being the 4th place celebrity. He married and later divorced the Celebrity Big Brother contestant, Chantelle Houghton.
The band released their third album How To Get Everything You Ever Wanted In Ten Easy Steps on October 23rd 2006.
Preston walked out of a 2007 episode of Never Mind The Buzzcocks after host Simon Amstell read extracts of Chantelle’s autobiography.
In 2007, Preston went through a damaging divorce and relocated to Philadelphia to regroup. During the long break, the band decided to part ways and focus on other projects, a decision made public in early 2008.