James Arthur normally feels sad at Christmas — but not this year, as he has a present up his sleeve for fans… 60 brand new tunes.
The Say You Won’t Let Go singer says past battles with mental health taught him how to turn the pandemic on its head and channel his creativity for a new music chapter.
‘I have finished the album. During lockdown I wrote about 60 songs. That’s all ready to go,’ the 32-year-old spilled to Guilty Pleasures.
‘I always feel a bit of sadness around Christmas and New Year.
‘I always feel like, “Have I done what I wanted to do? Am I in the right place?” I guess the pandemic has forced us to do that sooner than normal.
‘There’s been a lot of time to reflect. Christmas will be positive this year, nearing the end of this weird time.
‘I feel I have a lot of the tools to deal with it. A lot of people who deal with depression, anxiety and agoraphobia, they would have been quite happy… they don’t need an excuse to be social.’
He credits hiking ‘two or three hours a day’ for not being sunk by lockdown challenges. Of his new tracks, he admitted: ‘My last album confused people a bit. Trying to do a conceptual album — made over the course of two years — songs on that didn’t really fit. It wasn’t coherent.
‘This album has a real sound. Sonically, you can tell it’s from the same batch of writing. It’s all written in my house, by me. It feels quite reflective, like someone doing a bit of soul searching.’
With the wind in his sails, James is already making new year resolutions, which include a career change.
‘I’ve ramped up the acting thing to at least try and get a role. I’ve been to a few castings, done a few lessons.
‘I just want to get in the door and say I have done something whether it be a cameo or whatever. I want to learn the foundations… learn on the job,’ he said.
There ain’t no party like an S Club party for sleeping Thom
Radiohead’s Thom Yorke was on the brink of calling the Karma Police on S Club 7 — after they kept him awake with an S Club Party.
Band member Tina Barrett revealed the ’90s pop giants had a run-in with the indie legend, telling Guilty Pleasures: ‘We were partying in a hotel room and had a complaint from another guest.’
Naming the party pooper, the 44-year-old added: ‘We were told it was Thom Yorke, which we thought was pretty cool! Sorry Thom, I guess there ain’t no party like an S Club Party!’
Barrett is going solo with a Flashdance-inspired video for new single Private Dance Instructor, and has also teased a S Club reunion.
‘Some of the guys want to do it and it’s coming up to our 20th anniversary, so we’ll see,’ she said. ‘I’d love to do another reunion, the last one we did was so special. Everyone was on top form. We had a blast.’
But this time around she hopes it’s more chilled after explaining it was ‘easy to lose yourself’ in a pop machine.
She said of their once hectic schedule: ‘I remember for about three years always feeling sluggish and jet lagged.’
Stream come true puts Louis on top of world
The wind of 1D mania still carries Louis Tomlinson, who is celebrating after learning that his livestream on Saturday night was the biggest of the year so far by a male solo artist.
The Back To You singer managed to top his pop rivals by flogging 160,000 tickets to his streamed concert Live From London.
He nudges out bandmates Niall Horan and Liam Payne, and stars such as James Bay and Liam Gallagher who have also streamed shows to fans during lockdown.
Chuffed with the reaction, the 28-year-old praised fans saying: ‘That was incredible. Thank you to everyone that watched.
‘Can’t wait to finally get back on the road.’
Louis had to postpone his world tour until 2021 due to Covid.
Sudden fame’s driving Miss Daisy crazy
Becoming an overnight star felt like ‘a strange dream’, especially in the ‘topsy turvy’ world of lockdown. said Normal People’s Daisy Edgar-Jones.
The 22-year-old was initially only able to enjoy her success online due to the pandemic, but told The Big Issue: ‘When lockdown lightened and I was able to leave the house, I realised how many people the show had actually reached and what that meant for me and my career.
‘The show has definitely opened doors for me, which I feel very lucky about.’
And the BBC3 coming of age drama, adapted from the Sally Rooney novel of the same name, benefited from lockdown, she added.
‘It was a heightened experience for many people… it felt like it touched people on a deep emotional level,’ Daisy said.
No skirting around issue as Timothee mimics Hazza
Timothee Chalamet waded in to the Harry Styles fashion row when he ribbed his pal while hosting Saturday Night Live at the weekend.
The Dune actor — dressed in a striped jumper, big collar and flared trousers — adopted a British accent to play the part of Hazza in a chat show interview skit.
Mimicking Styles’ sexual ambiguity, he was quizzed about the star’s hit Watermelon Sugar and what it meant.
‘It’s just about summer but I think it’s about oral sex… on a great woman,’ the 24-year-old quipped.
Styles, 26, has been at the centre of a gender debate after right-wing commentator Candace Owens took offence to him posing in a dress on the cover of US Vogue. She called for a return of ‘manly men’.
Mocking the wardrobe wars, Chalamet jibed: ‘I’m Harry Styles. I’m a singer. I’m told I’m a sensual fashion man. You could say I do it for everyone.’
Fast mover Jason feels right at home
Jason Derulo’s’ gamble paid off when he moved his new squeeze into his house shortly after pulling her at the gym this year.
The TikTok guru said things are going great with Jena Frumes and he has no regrets about his swift decision to invite her to live with him.
The Savage Love singer, 31, added: ‘It kind of solidifies things when you’re spending that much time around somebody. You either love it or you hate it.
‘But it’s been pretty great and a lot of fun, so I’m enjoying it. We were born on the same day, so we’re so similar.’
And he told Closer the next level is coming.
‘My mum hasn’t met her yet — she’s only met her over the phone, so we’ll be going to Miami soon for that to happen.’
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