Louis Tomlinson: Being an X Factor judge is a 'no-brainer'

Louis Tomlinson, who has come full circle, says he was easily convinced to take on role of judge in TV music competition

The X Factor UK returns with a brand new panel of judges for its 15th season, with One Direction member Louis Tomlinson, English pop star Robbie Williams and his wife Ayda Field joining the reality TV music competition series' creator Simon Cowell.

It airs on Blue Ant Entertainment (StarHub TV Ch 509) on Sundays and Mondays at 7.55pm.

In particular, English pop singer Tomlinson, 26, comes full circle, as he is the first judge to have also been a contestant on The X Factor UK.

Boy band One Direction was discovered on the show in 2010.

Currently recording his debut solo album, Tomlinson's 2017 single Back To You hit No. 1 on iTunes and has sold more than 2.4 million units globally to date.

He recently won Choice Male Artist at the US Teen Choice Awards and the 2018 iHeartRadio award for Best Solo Breakout earlier this year.

How did Simon convince you to join the show?

It wasn't that hard to convince me, I have been a big fan of the show, even before I was on it myself.

I think it was maybe two or three years ago that I started coming down to the show of my own accord and helped Simon with his acts in the studio.

I found that really exciting. So as soon as I realised I could do both my own music and judge at the same time, it was a bit of a no-brainer for me.

What was it like sitting on the panel for the first time?

On the first day it was as surreal as the contestants auditioning. It was a proud moment, definitely.

I think it also helps having me there; I don't think they have ever had anyone on the panel who has auditioned for the show.

I feel a duty of care, I want to help people.

You marked the eighth anniversary of One Direction during the auditions. How has your life changed since that moment?

All our lives changed completely that day, that is the magic of this show. It has always been the power of this show that one audition can totally change your life.

How competitive are you?

I am really competitive. I hadn't really thought about it until the last couple of days of auditions. It was only then that it dawned on me that this is a competition and I would like to win it.

This is my first year and I have been all nice and friendly with the other judges until now.

Now I reckon it is on and I've got a good chance of winning.

How are you feeling about the pressure of mentoring an act in such a public arena?

I am relishing that pressure. I can't wait to get into it. It has always been an interest to me, the development of artists.

What excites me about The X Factor and getting my own category (the Boys) is really getting stuck into the creative part, really trying to use my experience over the years to help new artists.