Niall Horan is currently preparing to release his debut solo album, touring for summer radio shows, and still being One Direction’s biggest fan. In a recent chat with Billboard Magazine, we learned some new things about Niall but more than that, we were reminded of a few things that make him one of the sweetest and most humble people in the entertainment industry.
When the Billboard interview starts, Chris Martins talks about how Niall has a sort of charm about him that stems from the little quirks and way he lives without trying to impress anyone. He is unapologetically himself. When Chris went to Niall’s home he said Niall was on the phone with his mom, he walked in wearing workout gear, and took food from a nice woman who works for him, reminding him that there’s no pepper on his portion. It’s that acid reflux, Niall told him.
He goes on to talk about Niall’s home, how it’s like stepping into his mind, what he’s a fan of. He’s got photos and decor all around his home that points out the music and artists he respects and one wall is fully dedicated to The Eagles – we aren’t surprised.
Niall then speaks about The Eagles and a piece of advice he got from Don Henley – who he still speaks to often and calls ‘Dad’, in return, Don calls him ‘Son’.
“You better enjoy the ride, because one day you’re going to be sitting on your own balls.”
It’s clear that Niall lives by that advice. In fact, when One Direction went on their hiatus, he went rouge. He didn’t wear a shirt for three weeks in Thailand and said it ‘pissed rain’ in Bali. They got ‘very drunk’ in Hanoi and learned about history during their visit to Vietnam. Niall explains the bad hotel they got stuck in when they visited Boracay, and he loved the experience, even if it was a bit…rough.
‘Lights flickering, cats drinking out the pool, spiders walking the wall, damp bedsheets, plus you’ve got the shits from the dodgy food.‘
When it came time to start writing again though, he was filled with new experiences and was relaxed enough to take the process as it came. There was no rush, no deadline, no early alarms and recording in hotel rooms. It was Niall making the decisions and his songs so far are a reflection of that. We have to say, ‘This Town’ is fantastic, but there’s something sexy about both ‘Slow Hands’ and ‘On the Loose’ that make us even more excited for the rest of Niall’s album.
When Chris first spoke to Niall, he said he thought a lot of his own songs were shite, but by April of this year, he liked what he’d come up with. He’s also liking the radio shows he’s doing, used to large crowds, but he does yearn for some smaller venues as well.
‘Playing for, like, 500 people. What more do you want? I’ve had some good moments with screaming teenagers, but I like when the room is completely quiet. It’s a different kind of respect. People are actually listening.’
He went on to talk about golf, his love for his hometown, the pride he feels for the rest of his band mates, and about the friends he’s got in London and LA that make the rest of the dream he’s living great too. It’s not all work for Niall, he enjoys down time as well.
His statement about One Direction warmed our hearts, but it’s not something we were surprised by. Just because there’s no assigned time frame to the hiatus doesn’t mean we’re being yanked along while they never plan to reunite. They’ve said it before and they’ll say it again. It’s a break, a long one, but it’s not permanent.
‘I told my managers from the start: When One Direction comes knocking, fook what I’m doing. I don’t give a shit if I sold out arenas or won Grammys. I wouldn’t be doing this if it wasn’t for that.‘
For the entire interview, check out Billboard online and get the magazine near you soon.