In 2010, the singer auditioned for The X Factor where he was put in a boyband alongside Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson and Zayn Malik. After four albums as a fivesome, Zayn left the band. The remaining four boys released one final album before announcing their indefinite hiatus in August 2015.
Niall went on to pursue his solo career and released his first single, “This Town,” in September 2016. After dropping a second single, “Slow Hands,” the Irish crooner put out his debut solo record, Flicker, in October 2017.
“Some of the songs are heavier than others,” Niall told Entertainment Tonight of the album during a December 2016 interview. “I play a bit of electric on some tracks and we obviously played around a lot with percussion stuff to build up the songs so there was a lot of things going on percussion wise.”
He then went on to showcase his musical skills with a second album, Heartbreak Weather, which was released in March 2020.
“In terms of work, it’s been very hard for me — I’ve just released an album in the worst timing possible, in the history of mankind,” Niall told Capital FM amid the coronavirus pandemic. But despite the lack of live performances, his release was still a total smash!
When it comes to being a solo star, Niall has no issues making music without others.
“I’ve been doing it for ten years, so it’s about time I took the reins. And it’s been great. Even down to the creative elements, I’ve found with the upcoming album that I’ve become a lot more creative, whether that’s writing my last video or designing the set for my tour,” he told GQ in March 2020. “The whole process has been more stretched out, whereas in the band, everything was going at once.”
During the same interview, Niall looked back on his career and called 2019 his “most fun year.”
“I had a good balance of being in the studio, having enough time to think about what I was going to write and then spending time with my friends, going home to Ireland,” he shared, noting that no matter what, he’s still close to the 1D boys.
“We don’t get to see each other as much as we’d like to, but we try. I talk to Louis a lot,” Niall said. “It’s the lads with the kids that you try to keep in touch with especially, just to see how they are.”
Scroll through our gallery to see Niall’s complete transformation over the years.
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