George Shelley Talks To The Irish Independent!

George Shelley spoke to The Irish Independent before his pending gig in Dublin's 02!

George Shelley spoke to The Irish Independent before his pending gig in Dublin’s 02!

George with his Union J bandmates!

George with his Union J bandmates!

Union J will be playing the 02 on Tuesday. I know that because I’m going and I am so excited! So George from the band spoke to The Irish Independent about fans, been known overnight, his crippling shyness, why he doesn’t feel Union J are the next One Direction, been bullied at school and The X Factor amongst other things.

 Talking about having many screaming teenagers chasing them, he said,

“Do you know, those girls who break into hotels and all that … we’re very much like them. We listen to our fans a lot and do surveys and stuff. What comes back is that they see us as an ’emotional’ boyband. At the same time, they think we are crazy — the weirdest boys ever. Some of the stuff we come out with in interviews is just off the wall. Our fans are crazy and emotional and we are too.”

Speaking about how they have their own minds instead of been complete puppets for their record company, George said,

Actually our label have had a nightmare with us. We want to make sure everything is right. We were put together as a band on X Factor. When that happened, the four of us had a meeting where we decided what sort of band we wanted to become. Even on X Factor you can see we always had a vision — the kind of music we want to do, the way we want to present ourselves. For instance, I designed our logo. We have regular meetings with our stylists. We get final approval on record covers, the photos that go up on the website. All of it. It’s great fun — at the end of the day you are in a business too and you have to remember that.”

On what he thinks of the comparisons to One Direction, he said, “They are the biggest boyband in the world. We look up to them hugely. We’re on RCA, they’re signed to Syco, which operates out of the same building. We have met the guys — gone golfing with Niall. They have worked very hard to be where they are. We want to take a leaf out of their book. At the same time, from day one we were very clear in our minds that we didn’t want to be a copy of One Direction. We are Union J — there is a major divide. One Direction are very poppy and upbeat. We’re more a vocal group. There are songs on our album you wouldn’t expect from a boyband.”

Speaking about their time on The X Factor he said, “I got three ‘yes’ responses at the audition. The only ‘no’ was from Louis Walsh. He didn’t think I was ready to be a solo artist and told me to come back next year. Then I got the call from him — he had an idea. So I joined the band Triple J and we became Union J. It was weird — it’s all ups and downs in this business. If you want to enjoy the ups you have to stand strong in the face of the downs.”

On been shy and been bullied at school he opened up saying, “I am not the most confident person in the world. I was too shy to sing in front of my family. Basically my best mate made me go on X Factor. Some people on the show have done massively well from putting their personality out there. I was bullied at school. I got a hard time for being overweight. My confidence has been an issue.”

He also spoke about how he sees his future in songwriting after Union J finishes but said, ” Obviously Union J is not going to last forever. It will have a shelf-life. As long as Union J is a going concern, however, it will be my priority.”


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