When many X Factor stars have found their career over before it really began, Olly Murs has been one of the reality show’s bone-fide success stories.
The Essex singer finished as runner-up in the sixth series of the ITV series but quickly outshone winner Joe McElderry when debut single Please Don’t Let Me Go went straight into the UK charts at number one.
As well as a presenting stint on The Xtra Factor with Caroline Flack, Murs has gone on to rack up four solo number ones and sell 10 million records, teaming up with US star Demi Lovato on latest release Up.
The 30-year-old’s fourth album Never Been Better was released in November and chatting to Her.ie, the singer reveals that the title was meant quite literally.
“Yeah, I think with this album I wanted to do something bigger and better and have artists like Demi, who obviously has a big American following, obviously Travis McCoy, and I also had a collaboration with Ryan Tedder.
“I think it’s important to have big artists on there and I think it’s really helped my music. Up is getting great traction here in the States, where I am right now. I just wanted to get better and I believe that this album is one of the best that I’ve done.”
Murs has been vocal in the past about his increasing frustration with music industry snobbery, saying that many disregard his success due to his reality show origins.
However, he now seems to have taken a more relaxed attitude to his detractors and revealed that he has learned to focus on the longevity of his career and support from fans, rather than craving validation.
“I definitely think people’s perceptions of me have changed. To be honest with you, I don’t crave it and I genuinely just want to keep doing what I’m doing. I’ve got amazing fans, they enjoy my music and travel up and down the country to see me.
“It’s more industry people that have that attitude rather than fans. I’ll never be embarrassed of X Factor and being part of such a great show, it really elevated me to where I am now and I’m just so thankful for the career I’m having. I’m having such a good time doing it.”
While many acts grown distant from the show once launching their music careers, Murs has been inextricably linked and returned several times to perform on the show. If recent reports are to be believed, the Troublemaker star could be about to become a more permanent feature on the X Factor but he is reticent to confirm the possibility of joining the judging panel.
“To me, it’s just all rumours! I think it happens every year when the judging panel is going to change or the show is going to change, I get touted for a role on the show. For me, I’ve always said that one day I would love to be back on the show. I love doing the Xtra Factor, it was a big part of my life, I loved being a contestant and if I was a judge, I would love it but it’s more rumours than anything at the moment.”
When pressed, Murs admits that there have been talks about a role opposite Simon Cowell on the panel but adds that touring commitments have prevented plans from coming to fruition up to now.
“I’ve done a lot of travelling and touring in different countries so it’s been hard for me to commit to something when I’ve been so busy. That’s the hardest thing really, my music always comes first,” he said
“I’d be too nice I think! I don’t know if I could be horrible to the contestants because I’ve been there, you know? I think I would give my honest opinion and constructive criticism but at the same time, I think I’d be too nice!”
While a judging role might still be up in the air, Murs has a few other ideas of what he wants to achieve over the coming year, revealing (somewhat surprisingly) that he is eyeing up a venture into the dance genre.
“I’ve always wanted to do a dance record and maybe test the waters with an Avicii thing, David Guetta or Calvin Harris vibe, something I’ve never done before. That would be quite cool.”
Olly Murs plays 3Arena on Sunday April 12th, with extra standing and seated tickets going on sale tomorrow, Thursday March 19th, from Ticketmaster.ie.