I’m guessing you’ve already heard the good news…
The super talented X Factor winner Ben Haenow has made a welcome return to the music scene and is back with a brand new album! Here at WhatsOn we managed to secure an Exclusive with the TV favourite and caught up with him on his latest endeavours…
Hannah: Your new album is out now – how would you describe ‘Alive’?
Ben: It’s an evolution from the sound of the first album, with a slightly heavier live band sound production-wise. Lyrically and sonically, it feels more honest. There are more up-tempo songs and a few less ballads this time around.
Hannah: What is the meaning behind the album title?
Ben: Well it was taken from the lead single. The song itself was written as a thank you to the fans for keeping my dreams ‘Alive’ so essentially the hidden meaning is thank you.
Hannah: What are the main themes/messages within the album?
Ben: The songs are loosely written about my experiences between the height of The X Factor and the highs and lows of what followed. It’s lyrically a bit more autobiographical but I think it’s ambiguous enough to let people take away their own meanings and themes.
Hannah: What was your favourite part of appearing on The X Factor (aside from winning, of course!)?
Ben: The whole experience was incredible but one highlight was getting to share the stage with some incredible acts. I mean getting to sing with Queen was probably something I’ll never forget and I still have to pinch myself. I had some of the best experiences of my life during that show.
Hannah: What was the most challenging aspect of being on such a high-profile TV programme?
Ben: I think it was losing privacy in all areas of your life, from being completely unknown to then having your face in the papers and having friends and family in the media. It’s all quite daunting with no previous experience and it takes a while to get your head around.
Hannah: Has becoming an independent artist impacted you in any way? Are there any notable differences (having changed from Simon Cowell’s label)?
Ben: Overall control. Having total creative control is a huge difference. Having the support of a major label, you have a team of people to help with all aspects of recording and live shows. But when you’re independent, you have to get involved in all aspects of your career: promotion, live shows, touring etc. It’s actually been great to learn more about all the other things that come with being in the industry and I’m learning a lot which is only helpful in the long run.
Hannah: What do you do in your spare moments to relax?
Ben: Spending time with friends and family is my favourite thing to do with my spare time. I love to cook (and eat) and we love a big family get together.
Hannah: How are you finding married life?
Ben: I couldn’t be happier! I’m married to the most incredible and beautiful woman. Getting married has been the best thing I’ve ever done!
Hannah: Do you have a catchphrase or life motto, or a philosophy/ethos that you like to follow?
Ben: ‘Always eat your greens’.
Hannah: Aside from your album release, what else does the future hold for you?
Ben: Lots of live shows. Now that the new album is done, I can’t wait to get out and play. Stay tuned.
Ben’s new album is out now – make sure you check it out!
> Hannah Montgomery