If you haven’t heard Tom Bleasby’s name in the last twelve months, you’ve probably been living under a rock. From his stunning yet short-lived X Factor appearance to his viral Smule video with Jessie J, there have been countless opportunities to experience Tom’s unique, captivating voice.
Hey Tom! So, tell us about what happened on The X Factor…
“The X Factor was an incredible experience. So many mixed emotions. It’s an incredibly stressful experience… the pressure is immense. I met so many amazing people on the show, many of whom I’m still friends with. I decided to leave as I didn’t feel I was ready to keep going… I wasn’t sounding my best… and needed to let go of that experience… and regroup myself.”
What was it like meeting Jessie J on Ellen?
“The surprise of a lifetime! She’s such an immense vocalist… and such a kind, humble person.”
And meeting Ellen?
“Ellen inspires me so much. Everyone should aspire to be as kind as Ellen. She made me feel so comfortable. I love her!”
You’ve been performing at a lot of live shows… tell us what that’s been like.
“It’s been incredible! To sing for people live is thrilling, but equally terrifying. At first I really struggled with the nerves… but I quickly hit my stride and now I love it so much! I feel at home on stage. I feel if I were to do X Factor all over again… I’d be so much better at it. I have so much control now.”
Talk to us about the new single…
“It’s called “Half of Me” and it’s written by the incomparable brother duo Goran and Alan Kay. It’s a soft, emotional song about lost love. A lot of people will be able to relate to this song… and I hope it will touch people in some way.”
Is an album going to follow? What can we expect?
“We haven’t announced anything about an album yet… but of course that is the aim down the line. Keep your eyes peeled. The music industry is a tough environment. It’s ruthless…. it’s a constant fight to stay relevant. Forty years ago, artists needed to just be incredible at what they do… now everyone seems to be doing anything possible to stay in the limelight. It’s sad. I wish I was starting my career in the 1970s.”
Who are your biggest musical inspirations?
“I’m constantly inspired by awesome singers. The big voices of Whitney Houston, Barbra Streisand, Freddie Mercury… and the unique voices of Judy Garland, Michael Jackson, Etta James. In today’s industry I feel it’s lacking… we have great singers like Adele, Sam Smith and Paloma Faith… but there isn’t enough of them. My ultimate idol is Celine Dion. In my opinion, she’s the greatest singer in the world. I had the pleasure of meeting her in Las Vegas earlier this year. Such a kind lady.”
You’ve got a unique voice… has singing always been in your life?
“Since the age of six, I’ve been singing in the school choir. I’ve always had a unique voice. It often divides opinion… I’m fine with that!”
You’ve built quite a fanbase… What has the reaction of your career so far been like from fans?
“They’ve been wonderfully supportive. I’m incredibly grateful to them. They’ve put me where I am… and will continue to be my source of inspiration.”
How much has Smule played a role in your career?
“Smule has played a huge role! It’s where it all began… almost a year ago. Since then they’ve supported me immensely. They’ll be licensing my single on the app… they flew me to San Francisco to open for Jason Derulo… I’m so blessed.”
YouTube and the Internet have changed everything for up and coming singers. Do you think you’d have gotten this far without it?
“Very true. Long gone are the days where singers tour the pubs and clubs and hopefully get picked up by label scouts. Although that can happen, the majority of artists now use social media to get their voices heard. I think it’s awesome! So many creative people getting a chance to express themselves.”
What tips would you give budding musicians/performers?
“I don’t feel I’m in a position to give advice to anybody. I still have a lot to prove, and I’m by no means the standard for others. But I will say… follow your heart, surround yourself with the best people… and don’t sell yourself short.”
You were bullied when you were younger. Looking back, did you ever expect to be this successful?
“Absolutely not. It all came as a huge surprise. I’m truly blessed.”
What would you say to those who brought you down when you were younger?
“‘Hey b***** look at me!!!’ haha. Just kidding… I’d forgive them. Kids can be cruel… hopefully they’re not cruel adults too.”
Finally, what does the future hold for Tom?
“I want a Grammy Award!!! Hahah… but for now I’ll settle with singing for the people who like what I do.”