From losing his lucky hat to going head-to-head with Katy Perry, singer Olly Murs reveals the stories behind his favourite things.
I did the Great North Run with my sister Fay last month. I hurt my calf muscle halfway through and had to hobble for a few miles, but we raised more than £75,000 for Brainwave and Mind UK charities. Fay’s suffered terrible anxiety since being bullied at school – running has helped her.
When I was on The X Factor, trilbies were trendy. I couldn’t be bothered to do my hair, so I started wearing one and it became my trademark. After a few years, I didn’t want to be known as ‘the hat guy’, so I stopped and my Marlon Brando quiff was born.
I started collecting bobbleheads when I toured America with One Direction in 2012. I’d pick one up in each state we went to, such as a New York Yankees baseball player. These ones of my nana and granddad, who had them made for me, are the best.
When I first started out, I’d go to the pub, have a few pints and sing karaoke. One day, the owner of my local invited me to perform and that’s how I started. This is the playlist from the last gig I did with Small Town Blaggers, the little band I was in.
I received this Official Charts Company Award when I had my first number one, ‘Please Don’t Let Me Go’, in 2010. I was deflated after losing The X Factor, but I got a record deal. We had a chart battle with Katy Perry’s ‘Teenage Dream’, but I came out on top.
I co-own Coggeshall Town Football Club with a friend. Each season we give out funny prizes and this year I got the Zippy Award, which means I have to shut my mouth – I like shouting on the sidelines! I played football semi-professionally until a knee injury stopped me.
These photographs are of my sister Fay [centre] and my mum Vickylynn [far right with Olly as a baby]. We’re a close family and hopefully I’ll add to it one day when I have kids.
This was my original number when I auditioned for The X Factor. I wore this tag every day throughout the whole life-changing experience. I still go online and re-watch my performances to remind me of where it all began.
Interview by Charlotte Pearson Methven
Olly’s new single, ‘Moves’, featuring Snoop Dogg, is out now; his new album, You Know I Know, will be out on 9 November. For more details, go to ollymurs.com