One Direction: The Hottest Boy Band
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Ever feel left out because you missed the whole Beatle’s invasion of the US back in February 7, 1964? Yeah, me neither. Well, buckle up sweetheart, because there is a new British invasion headed for the beaches of the good ole US of A. It will surely cause all the girls in the neighborhood to lose their minds all over again and forget about “The Biebs.” The newest thing to storm the tween crowd is called One Direction. What the heck is One Direction? Would you believe it’s the newest boy band on the scene?
History of One Direction
The group of five is brought to us by none other than the effervescent Simon Cowell after they were brought together as a band and placed third on the British television music competition The X Factor during the seventh season. One Direction is a mix of British and Irish members; Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson. Crowell signed the group to his record label, Syco Records before they contracted with North America’s Columbia Records.
The Members of One Directions
Niall Horan was born on September 13, 1993 in Mullingar, County Westmeath, Ireland. Preceding his audition for The X Factor, Horan performed around Ireland. He was an opening act in Dublin for Lloyd Daniels (an X Factor contestant from 2009). When asked about his auditioning for The X Factor, he stated, "I'm 16 and I want to be a big name like Beyoncé and Justin Bieber. I've been compared to him a few times and it's not a bad comparison. "
Zain "Zayn" Malik was born on January 12, 1993 in Bradford, West Yorkshire, England. Malik says of his experience on The X Factor, "I was looking for an experience” and performed the Mario R&B song "Let Me Love You" for his audition.
Liam Payne was born on29, August 1993 in Wolverhampton, West Midlands, England. Prior to his audition for The X Factor, Payne performed in front of a 26,000 crowd at a Wolverhampton Wanderers' football match. Payne first auditioned in 2008 at the age of fourteen. Simon Cowell asked him to return in two years when he thought Payne would be better prepared for the competition.
Harry Edward Styles was born February 1, 1994 in Holmes Chapel, Cheshire, England. As the lead singer for the band White Eskimo, Styles and band members once entered and won a Battle of the Bands competition. He admits that The X Factor experience gave him "a lot more" confidence as a performer and singer.
Louis Tomlinson was born on December 24, 1991 in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, England. Tomlinson held a number of jobs prior to auditioning for The X Factor, including at a Vue cinema and at Doncaster Rovers football stadium where he worked as a waiter in their hospitality suites. Tomlinson contributes landing the lead role in a high school musical production of Grease to motivating him to audition for The X Factor.
One Direction - Not Your Typical 'Boy Band'
When asked about One Direction as a typical boy band, Horan said, "People think that a boy band is air-grabs and [being] dressed in all one color. We're boys in a band. We're trying to do something different from what people would think is the typical kind of boy band. We're trying to do different kinds of music and we're just trying to be ourselves, not squeaky clean."
Leah Collins of the National Post wrote of One Direction, "For the most part, that just means the group presents themselves as typical, goofy and uncensored teenage boys — posting jokey YouTube videos, for instance, or boozing at awards shows."
As is typical of a boy band, each member of One Direction is known for a certain characteristic; Horan is "the cute one", Malik is "the quiet and mysterious one", Payne is "the sensible one", Styles is "the charming one" and Tomlinson is "the funny one".
One Direction’s Success On Social Media
"Sometimes you feel the song's the star, but it's not like that here – it's the act. It's a real moment. Social media has become the new radio, it's never broken an act globally like this before" states Syco Records managing director, Sonny Takhar. He added,” These guys live online, and so do their fans."
One Direction members all tweet on behalf of themselves, which gives fans the illusion that "they couldn't be any closer to their fans." As of July 2012, the group’s Twitter account had a following of 3 million followers and gaining an average of 20,000 followers per day. Fans of the group are referred to as “Directioners” and are encouraged to interact with the band members on their web site as well as on Twitter. Their Facebook page boasts a following of 5 million fans. Not bad for a group of guys a lot of us in the US are only becoming aware of.
Currently, One Direction is on tour in Great Britain performing their hits that include; “Up All Night,” “One Thing,” “What Makes You Beautiful,” and “Gotta Be You.” They kick off their US tour on June 13, 2013 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Expect utter chaos and pandemonium at ticket outlets on April 21, 2013 when tickets go on sale.
Ok, That’s What ‘One Direction’ Is!
So, One Direction turns out to be the hottest boy band since Backstreet Boys and New Kids on The Block and not just someone’s bad instructions on how to get to the nearest Wal-Mart. And, they are set to hit the shores of the US next summer. That leaves plenty of time to build a fallout shelter, stock the shelves and prepare for the pending invasion. I’ll be ready. How about you?