It’s hard to believe that it’s been 11 years since Olly Murs finished runner up on The X Factor – and what a career he has had so far.
The 37-year-old is due to perform at Swansea’s Singleton Park on August 15 – four years after his 2017 gig in the Welsh city when thousands flocked to see the Essex singer-songwriter perform some of his well-known hits.
As well as music, Olly is also a coach on singing competition The Voice, alongside Sir Tom Jones who Olly describes as one of his “favourite human beings in the world”.
Olly is also set to host a new entertainment series coming to ITV called Starstruck, a reboot to Stars In Their Eyes. This will be the 37-year-old’s first solo presenting gig.
Here we ask him a few important questions, including working with Sir Tom, his Swansea memories and a typical day in the life of Olly Murs…
How has lockdown been for you?
Yeah, it’s been fine. Obviously it’s had it’s ups and downs, there’s been some good days, some bad days, lots of boring ones. I just try and stay positive, try and keep myself busy.
What made you want to come back to Swansea?
I remember the gig being fantastic, I knew it was a great night and I know that we sold lots of tickets. It was a great, fun show. The Welsh people are incredible, really lovely, brilliant, loud, love singing. I had to come back.
Is there a worry the gig might not be able to happen, August is not that far away?
Of course, I’m worried, I’m still hopeful though, I know it can change like that. I have to stay optimistic and positive.
The last time you were in Swansea did you get the chance to see much of the city?
I remember going for a run down to the seafront. We had a hotel on the seafront so it was nice to go for a little run. I didn’t get much of a chance to see too much of it. Maybe this time I will get the chance to spend a bit of time down there.
What can we expect from the tour this time around, any surprises?
Just lots of fun, energy, I will try and freshen it up as much as I can for the fans, but it’s just a bit of fun. I’ve got new hair, it’s a bit longer, blonder, I’ve lost a bit of weight so I will just be up there having a good time and making people smile. Hopefully people will be excited to see me because I haven’t done this for two and a bit years, I’m looking forward to getting back out there again.
Find out about things going on where you live:
What’s it like as an artist, not being able to get on stage and perform?
Live music is everything, one of the best things I get to do is get out there and sing infront of people, perform, it’s a great feeling, hard to explain really.
Do you have a new album coming out?
I hope so. I’m going to be doing new music next year – this year was always hard to piece it together and get it done, the unpredictability of everything. It was hard to predict what was happening, new music is definitely on it’s way but not this summer.
What’s been your biggest career highlight?
My first number one, that was the start of it all. It was 2010 when Please Don’t Let It Go came out and I was 25-26. Just excited about the whole experience of being number one.
Do you ever keep in touch with anyone from The X Factor?
I’m not going to lie and say I speak to them and text them all the time, no, I see them in and around the industry really whenever we go to places, gigs or if I’m on TV I’ll bump into a few of them. I haven’t spoken to a lot of them in ages, I see them on social media, it seems like they are really enjoying themselves and carrying on with their careers.
X Factor was such a great experience, we definitely have a bond and I’m sure at one point, maybe after this pandemic, we’ll have a catch up and maybe we’ll all try and meet up for a drink and reminisce on some of the old memories.
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What’s it like working with Sir Tom Jones on The Voice?
He’s one of my favourite human beings in the world, he’s one of a kind, such a great person to talk to and have a laugh with. I’m very thankful that I get to work with such a great man on The Voice.
The Voice is such a great show and we sit there for hours and hours together so it’s nice when you get someone next to you that you get on really well with and you enjoy being around. Very lucky.
He speaks so highly of Wales, the people.
Let’s talk about your new show Starstruck, what was that like, landing that huge gig?
My first ever prime time Saturday night show – I’ve never hosted a show on my own before so to be given the opportunity I’m very thankful. I love the show. People are going to love it.
When is it coming to our screens?
I don’t know, I have no idea, I wish I could tell you.
If you could change your voice and sound like someone else for one day, who would it be?
Tom Jones (before bursting into song and singing It’s Not Unusual)
What’s a typical day in the life like for Olly Murs?
At the moment, I get up about 8-9am, I go to the gym go and train, I potter round the house doing odd jobs and that’s basically it really. It all depends on work, if I’m not working, gym, take the dog for a walk, making food, go shopping. If I’m busy, I could be doing anything, my hours are so crazy, I’ve just been filming Starstruck it was 10am-11am finishing at 11pm. It all depends on the job.
What do you prefer music or presenting, if you could only do one of those jobs?
Music. It’s a lot less stressful doing music, it’s my job, it’s my thing, no one is telling me what to do but I do love it (TV). You’ll have to ask me in 10 years time.
And what’s your favourite song to sing?
It has to be Dance With Me Tonight, it’s such a crowd favourite, everyone is on their feet dancing and singing to it.