Olly Murs interview ahead of his Gloucestershire gig at Westonbirt
SINCE leaving The X Factor as runner-up in 2009, Olly Murs has released three albums and sold almost three million copies. He's had massive chart success with Dance With Me Tonight, Oh My Goodness and Heart Skips A Beat. And girls love him. This summer, he's coming to Westonbirt Arboretum as part of Forest Live.
You've been in the United States lately, Olly. How's it going?
Really well, I'm so chuffed. There's another single coming out over there soon, and then the album in April. I'm going to be back there after my UK tour for more promo. It'll be an interesting couple of months. The single Troublemaker is doing really nicely, smashing it in fact. Things have been taking off since before Christmas, so it looks like it'll be a big hit over there.
With a wave of Brits such as Adele, Ed Sheeran and One Direction doing so well over there, is it paving the way for you?
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There's been a recent influx in the past year or so, but British artists doing well in the US go back years, we've always done well over there. It's a bit more highlighted now, but it's a pleasure to be a part of it. The Americans are jumping on our music and that's great. It's all down to quality; Brits are releasing quality music and that's the most important thing.
What have you got planned for Westonbirt?
It's going to be a step up from the last tour, so bigger everything. I've done well in the past year, so it's got to be a bigger show. Bigger stage, bigger arrangements and bigger band. There are plenty of songs now too, with three albums, so it's picking the right ones for the show.
Is it hard choosing what to leave out?
It is hard, but it's great to be in that position. People come from The X Factor and they might stick around for a year or two, so I'm proud to carry on selling records, to grow a fan base and be on three albums. It's a massive achievement and it doesn't get highlighted enough, the three albums I've released and the sales I've achieved. I think it's amazing and I'm really chuffed, but it doesn't get written about.
Doesn't that bother you?
Of course it does. You want to be successful from a fan point of view, and you want people to buy your stuff – I think people love my stuff – so from that aspect I couldn't be doing any better. From an industry point of view, press too, there is snobbery that I'm from The X Factor, that I didn't come through the right channels. I don't understand it. It's clear how successful I've been and what I've achieved. It's like you have to decide whether you want to win awards, or sell records, but I want both. I've got amazing fans, an amazing team, and there are a lot of people out there that enjoy my music, so I have to focus on that. Everyone likes an underdog.
Do you see yourself as an underdog?
Yes, but an underdog that's sold almost three million albums. The sales are there, I don't need to bang on about that, and I'm proud of what I've achieved, so if people don't want to write about me, fair enough. I'll have to carry on selling records and doing arena tours.
You were nominated for Best British Male at The Brits the other week. That's recognition.
Well, yes. But it's an award voted for by the industry, so I knew I wouldn't win. If it was voted for by the fans, then I might have had a chance. I would love to have won, and it's a pleasure to be nominated. I should've been nominated in 2012 to be honest, so I felt that was a bit of a snub. It's great to be nominated this year, with those other guys, so perhaps it's a step forward within the industry and with journalists, maybe they're starting to come around and noticing my achievements.
Are you going to be back on the Xtra Factor?
It's unlikely. I'm not too sure. It depends on my schedule. Last year I didn't do anything until the live shows, so that might be something we do again. There's been a lot of speculation, but I've never said it was definite that I wasn't going back, just that it was unlikely. I might still do it, we'll see. I've enjoyed The Xtra Factor, it's been a great part of my career.
â Olly Murs is at Westonbirt Arboretum on Sunday, June 23. Tickets are on sale now, priced £35, from Forestry. gov.uk /music