Olly Murs: Never Been Better as he wraps up tour
OLLY Murs is the lad from Essex who exploded into the music charts after a stint on the UK version of The X Factor in 2009.
Six years later, Olly continues to take the world by storm and is currently on the last leg of his Never Been Better Tour. To the delight of Australian fans, Olly brought the tour to Australia. He visited Perth, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide and Sydney and brought plenty of energy to the stage with each show.
While on tour, I caught up with Olly just hours before his Brisbane show.
His crew were running through the lighting sequence and checking everything was ready for the show. Olly was calm and composed, at ease with the idea of performing before hundreds of screaming fans.
"To be honest with you, I always try and make the show as entertaining as possible," Olly said.
"I feel like it's an all-round sort of show. We have our caring, sensitive, lovely moments and also have the fun, exciting, having-a-good-time moments. I just try and give people a good time really, with lots of energy, lots of fun and kind of just having a good time. I think that's my thing. Everywhere I go, if this room wasn't sold out tonight and there was just a couple of seats, I'd perform and do my best. That's what I try and do, have a good time and let the music showcase itself.
"My favourite song off the newest album is actually a song called Let Me In, which is a song I wrote with Paul Weller.
"It was a really fun, vibey session. Me and Paul had a great time working together and Paul Weller is obviously an absolute icon in the UK, especially in the 80s, and I grew up listening to his music, so to get a chance to write with him was amazing."
Any fan of Olly will tell you he has shared a friendship with Robbie Williams since competing on The X Factor.
Search for Olly Murs and Robbie Williams on YouTube and you will find clips of them singing I Wanna Be Like You from the Jungle Book, a song that is a reflection of the pair's mutual admiration.
"I've been a fan of Robbie's since I was a kid, but more so now. I've got into his music a lot more and read up a lot more about Robbie and his career and know more about him, I suppose, more in-depth because I've got to know him, so I understand him a lot more. He's incredible. You learn so much - what would you not learn off someone as great as Robbie? He's a really cool guy, he's got a great personality and he's a great performer."
Olly also lists musicians Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Paul Weller and Justin Timberlake as being part of the soundtrack of his childhood.
"A lot of them make all amazing music and I think that kind of puts me where I am. I think now I'm a cheeky, fun performer that can dance and have a good time and I've got a bit of soul in my voice, and so kind of tick all the boxes in terms of all those different people put together, that's kind of shaped me to who I am now," he said.
While onstage, he feeds off the energy from the crowd and clearly enjoys every minute of the performance. However, he said that six years ago he never would have dreamt he would be as successful as he is now.
"I didn't expect to be doing what I'm doing, so I'm always delighted. This is the second time I've come to Brisbane now and so that means a lot to me. It's very special," he said.
Olly also shared some valuable advice for people trying to break into the music industry.
"I think you've got to be yourself. I think if you're trying to be someone else, for example, with the X Factor at the moment that we're doing, there's a couple of artists who have come on there and they are trying to be Ed Sheeran or they are trying to be Sam Smith., or you know, they are just trying to be other artists," he said.
"So I would say to someone who's come into this job, you know, don't try and be someone else, just try and be you. If anything you get more honesty, you get more passion, you get more everything, when you're actually being yourself. People connect with you a lot better as well."
He said he planned to return to Australia for another tour when he releases his next album, and shared a special message for his fans.
"Just a massive thank you for all your continued support. I can't thank the Aussies enough for their love, they've been brilliant to me over the last four years," he said. "Every time I've come back, it's got stronger and my popularity's grown because of them really. They've been pushing it when I'm not here, they've been driving my music to everyone and it's been really, really amazing, so thank you."