X Factor and Me

This was supposed to be a 2000 word blog piece but I had too much difficulty in telling the stories without mentioning names, dates, times and places. I am mindful that many former X factor contestants are still young enough to bounce back in the music industry a couple of times and investors* still have time to build up their cash reserves again.

(* investors are not only financial, this also applies to the teams of producers, mentors, songwriters and other affiliates.)


There are some simple rules for success as a singer / artist in the music industry.  Trevor Horn has 5. I have 7.

Trevor’s rules are:

1) ability to write or have access to the best songs

2) a great voice of 2 octaves

3) personal charm and charisma

4) mentally and physically strong

5) really want it

My additional rules are:

6) Must have singing lessons. Music is a profession and I find it crazy that singers dont get lessons. After all, the vocal cords are delicate flaps that need looking after. There is a reason why the lead singers of The Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Depeche mode sound better now than they used to and have voices that can cope with gruelling tour schedules.

7) Must know who Trevor Horn is. This means that the singer is a student of the music industry.  Imagine comedian Kevin Hart not knowing the work of Eddie Murphy or Whitney Houston not knowing the work of Ella Fitgerald?


Success in the music industry is really as simple as following those 7 rules. It is surprising how many people I’ve met who mess up the parts that you’d think would be the easiest.


8) At the end of this blog, I remembered a piece of advice from singer songwriter producer and former boyband member Ben Adams (whos he? Look him up). His overarching advice to artists (at all levels) was ‘Don’t be a dick.’