X Factor winners and finalists often disappear without trace.
Not so Matt Cardle who continues to go from strength to strength six years on from his talent-show triumph.
His latest tour Intimate & Live brings him to Horsham’s Capitol Theatre on Sunday, June 19 (7.30pm), as he builds towards the release of his latest album.
“The thing is: a show like X Factor is a huge platform. Everybody hears about it. You can’t get away from it even if you hate X Factor! It is in the news, it is in the papers, it is on TV twice a week and there are all sorts of things about it.
“You get more exposure in a short time than most people get in a lifetime, and that’s why it is so difficult to maintain. That level of exposure is just not sustainable. You cannot expect to be on people’s prime-time TV every week of the year.”
And that’s why, post X Factor success, Matt believes the secret to enduring success is hard work, as simple as that.
“Really, to be honest, it’s just about dedication and keeping at it.
“If you know this is what you are wanting to do for the rest of your life, then you have got to give it everything.”
In that sense, winning X Factor is much more of a starting point than it is a finishing line: “There are so many people out there that you have just got to see X Factor as a platform into the industry. I won the show and that was an opportunity and it was then up to me to make sure that I made the best of it. Since then, I have been working non-stop. I have had ups and downs. I have been right up and I have been right down, but you have got to just keep at it. I honestly believe that you have just got to stay true to yourself, but I was also lucky that when I came into it, I was 27. I had had a long time to know where I wanted to be at that time, and then after that I spent four to five years developing myself as an artist, and I am sure I will spend the next four to five years developing myself as an artist! You have got to have faith in what you do.
“But I nearly killed myself doing it. It made me so ill. I caught the flu and it turned into all sorts of nasty things during the series. It ended up as bronchitis and laryngitis, and I didn’t really get over it until the end of January after the show. There was just so much adrenaline and so many nerves flowing through me!”
But, having been determined since the age of seven or eight that this was where he wanted his career to lie, he soldiered on. Record sales of 2.2 million in the UK, three top-ten albums and five sold-out tours have followed.
“For this latest tour, it will be a collection of songs. I have always wanted to do this tour before because I have always believed that the best way to release an album would be to write the thing and then take it out on tour and really work on the songs before recording the album. You learn so much about an album when you are touring. You learn different ways of singing things, and you get the audience reaction. I have got most of the new album ready, but I can go back in August and September and change things depending on what I learn from doing the songs on tour.”
The tour will also, of course, feature the greatest hits...
Tickets cost £25-£99. Call 01403 750220 or visit www.thecapitolhorsham.com.
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