The first inklings that Bananarama, beloved pop trio of the 1980s, might reform with their original line-up of Keren Woodward, Sara Dallin and Siobhan Fahey (scream!), took place two years ago in exactly the style you'd want it to: according to Siobhan, "during a drunken kitchen disco".
Wait, maybe it was before then, that night at Giorgio's in Los Angeles - the exclusive club night at The Standard hotel frequented by stars of the calibre of Leo DiCaprio and Mick Jagger - which ended up with the three 50-somethings leading a conga around the dance floor until everyone joined in.
Certainly the signs were pointing to something of the old friendships being almost entirely restored and heading in the right direction for a reunion, reports Telegraph UK.
But it wasn't until December 2016, when Siobhan, now a permanent LA resident, got a call from Keren (who lives in Cornwall and is married to former Wham! member Andrew Ridgeley) to say that the decision was firmly made. Bananarama, the founding members, were reforming. SHRIEK!!!
"I was in shock," says Siobhan, who at 59 is still so much the coolest girl in the school it makes you shy. "Because it was the last thing on my mind - to quote one of their songs from after I left," she adds with a little sideways glint, just visible through the kohl.
In March, the deal was finally done and the management said, hey presto, here's a tour we prepared earlier - and a month of dates across the UK were presented.
It all kicks off next month and when we meet at a house in north London where they've just had their photograph taken for Stella, they're about to start rehearsals for the first live tour they will have ever done as a trio.
Because for the six years Siobhan was in the band, it was all about TV rather than live touring. Not that that did them any harm. Eat your hearts out Girls Aloud, Little Mix and even the Spice Girls - it's the original fun girl three who still hold the record for most charted singles ever released by a girl group.
Need a reprise? Venus. Robert de Niro's Waiting. Cruel Summer. Nathan Jones. I Heard a Rumour...
For a certain generation (mine), these instant-singalong tracks are like teenage diary entries, bringing back a rush of memories of disco lights, sticky youth-club dance floors and dreamy boys who are now grey-haired, middle-aged men.
My favourite pop moment ever - apart from waving at Bros from the top of a multistorey car park in Manchester - was aged 14 and watching Bananarama live on TV at the 1988 Brit Awards ('Our swansong before we split up,' remembers Keren) when they sang Love in the First Degree in front of a troupe of male dancers wearing nothing but black undies and boots. The dancers, I mean. It was brilliant.
"It was our idea to use those men, to dress them like that," says Sara. Keren nods. "We were very creative. There was nothing contrived about us. No one telling us what to do, what to wear, what to sing. We wrote our own material, chose our producers."
"We were all really into music and we knew how we wanted those records to sound," adds Siobhan. And that's why they were so irresistible.
The girls - because Bananarama are forever girls - looked like they were having the time of their lives in their chunky Dr Martens, over-the-knee socks and little stretchy black minidresses, feathers flying.
In their cut-off Levi's with giant "Boy" T-shirts falling off their shoulders, they were like the very best version of you.
Lodged between the punk years and the Stock Aitken Waterman factory, and taking attitude and pop-appeal from both, Bananarama marked a high point for girls. They were girl power before the Spice Girls claimed to have invented it.
And not that it was only girls who appreciated them. Liam Gallagher had their poster on the wall.
"Nothing was planned," says Keren. "Turn up in what you were wearing and just have a laugh. It wasn't unprofessional, because we were professional, but it wasn't polished. It was the anti-stage school performance that you mostly get these days."
When you think how pop stars now seem to arrive straight from Planet Branding, with a stylist, 32 perfect pearly-whites, hair implants and a 10-year business plan, the Bananas' nascent rise seems astonishing.
These were the days when a band could have a record in the charts, be living in a high-rise council flat in Holborn and still be signing on the dole. Which is exactly what they were doing for the first year.
Keren and Sara met at school when they were very little, and when Sara, aged 17, met Siobhan as students at the London College of Fashion, they asked her to join their fledgling band.
"In those days fashion was not stylish," says Siobhan. "It wasn't about designer clothes. We were more street style and we made our own clothes and bought a lot of stuff from charity shops. So it was very DIY - and so was the music of the time."
"The attitude was all about that. It was kind of anti-stardom," says Sara. They were big on the clubbing scene. "Everyone we knew was forming a band," says Keren.
"Boy George, Wham! Sade." She shrugs. "But it wasn't a big deal, they were our friends. It wasn't like we were hanging out with pop stars. We used to play netball with Sade."
I'm sorry? "Yeah, every Sunday at Gray's Inn. Her team were the worst cheats. There was no umpire and they were awful." Meanwhile, with the help of Sex Pistol Paul Cook, the trio recorded their first demo.
John Peel played it on his show, NME was nice about it. They were officially cool. They worked with the male trio Fun Boy Three, releasing two singles with them in 1982, and then had their own top five hit with Shy Boy later that year. Siobhan sums it up, 'It was surreal and hilarious.'
Now here they are, 35 years later and Keren says they feel exactly the same. "It's kind of like family, even if you don't see them for 10 years," says Siobhan, whose voice is deep and husky just like it was when she was in Shakespears Sister, the band she formed after she left Bananarama.
"Nothing's changed. It's just that energy. The chemistry is the same." Keren cackles.
"Although that depends which family you're talking about..." Keren, 56, Sara, 55, and Siobhan are all mothers of grown-up kids (Siobhan has two sons, both musicians, Keren has a son and Sara's daughter, Alice, is here today in her role as social-media manager of the band).
They are slim, glossy haired, perfectly made-up - and still squabbling about who's wearing what, like every girl group ever.
I do a bit of eavesdropping while they're having their picture taken (well, you would wouldn't you?) and it's all teenage-girl talk with a few indications of middle-age: "Does my jacket look boxy? Does it?' 'Why are trousers so long these days - these are ridiculous!" "Move over, your head is digging into my shoulder," and, "God, my stomach's bloated - there's just no holding this in."
Keren and Siobhan are smokers; Sara says she's trying not to be. And while Siobhan is a kundalini yoga fanatic - she does it at dawn every morning at home in LA and is also a clean-eating fan, Keren says she hates exercise and is in her local bakery buying pasties all the time ('I must bring some back up on Monday').
And that, for all Siobhan's anti-sugar proclamations, when she spotted Keren with a Twix the other day she practically snatched it out of her hand.
At one point, Keren bemoans the fact that due to the tour there will be no drinking wine for a while. "Well, the hangovers are so bad now," she says. Have they changed? "We've all grown up, obviously," says Keren, who's definitely the lead talker. "Probably less than most. I'd hate to be too grown-up. That would be dull."
"It's quite good that all those silly things from back in the day have gone," says Sara. "All that 'Oh, I'm not talking to her, she did that...' Now you think, why couldn't you have been a little bit wiser in those days?"
"But you're not really emotionally mature in your 20s. Well, we weren't. You don't say anything, you just bottle it up and then it builds up," says Keren. "Now, socially, we've all got our different things going on," adds Siobhan. "Even Sara and Keren aren't together all the time."
"Well, I'm in Cornwall most of the time. But I think that's growing up. You become more independent of the people you know. When we first started it was like we moved as one person with six legs. We were so shy. If one person needed the toilet we'd all go."
Even when they got their advance and moved out of the flat in Holborn, they bought three houses next door to each on the same street in north London, like the Beatles in A Hard Day's Night.
"That's when Siobhan says the rot set in," says Keren, dryly. Because, of course, Siobhan left the band. Why, Siobhan, why?
"There was a slow denouement," she says with grin. "I was probably getting on their nerves and they started going out without me and I felt very isolated and also..."
"No," interrupts Keren. "We had different friend sets. It doesn't mean that you have to go out together all the time together."
"No but I was kind of used to that and so I felt a bit lost. And then I met someone who was completely out of our circle - Dave." (Stewart, of Eurythmics, whom she married and is father of her two sons.)
"And you fell in love," says Sara in a whispery voice.
"And I wanted to do something musically that was different..."
"I think we all did," says Keren. "Because we went on to do Pop Life, which is nothing like the others, it's a guitar-based album."
And musical differences now aside, here they are again. Keren and Sara have been performing as Bananarama ever since, doing shows and festivals every summer, sometimes with other '80s bands, so they're used to it.
They refuse to comment on whether there will be any semi-clad backing dancers in the show, but there'll be some choreography.
"Not arms and legs," says Sarah, firmly. "No, we can't do both arms and legs," says Keren.
"If we're waving our arms we'll be on the spot and if we're moving our legs our arms will be down here." Siobhan says that makes her feel a little vulnerable.
"It's 30 years since I've worn these shoes," she says. "But I'm very excited. I'm really proud of my Bananarama history."
The band will only be singing the material they performed as the original trio - but let's face it, that's the best stuff. And it's all come about because they now have a genuine friendship again - in case the cynics among you are raising your eyebrows.
"Some groups that have got back together, I know for a fact, travel in separate cars, stay in different hotels and you think, 'Why do you do it?' If you can't do it for the love and the joy of it then don't bother," says Siobhan.
"That's just about making money," says Sara scornfully.
"Which is not what we've ever been about. Ever. I mean in 1980 we were offered a hair-colour endorsement in LA for a million dollars, when we were really poor."
'They showed us the storyboard and there's me in a negligee. So we turned it down,' says Keren.
'It was such a lot of money but we still couldn't bring ourselves to do it. Principles.'
I suppose that idea of not selling out is one of the things that has massively changed in the music industry, I say. 'Yeah,' snaps back Sara. 'I mean, we'd do it now.' And they all have a right old cackle.
The tour runs from 9 November to 9 December
- Telegraph UK