Darren Milby column

Lucy Spraggan on stage.
Lucy Spraggan on stage.
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It’s been a fairly busy week at Bay Towers for visiting pop stars.

Firstly I was joined on the show by Lucy Spraggan. You may remember Lucy from her appearance on The X Factor last year. She was the first contestant in the show’s history to perform an original track during her audition.

Her performance of ‘Beer Fear’ has now clocked up over 25 million views on You Tube. Lucy herself can’t quite believe her popular that was.

Her audition came at a time when the X Factor was dropping in the ratings and it seemed to me that the whole country was suffering fatigue from contrived reality talent shows where pop wannabes sang cheesy cover versions.

I’m not saying that Lucy has made the show credible musically but Lucy Spraggen changed perceptions slightly.

I asked her why someone who writes their own music and is not a conventional pop star would want to enter a show like X Factor.

She told me of her struggles to make ends meet and be noticed for her talent. She was gigging in the evening, working full time in the day and recording songs in her friend’s living room using a £30 microphone.

She did the show a favour and the show did her an even bigger one. She is now signed to a major record label but is still doing things her way.

She wrote her new album in its entirety and is still gigging all over the country and building a solid fan base.

I hope she does really well. I think she will be a slow burner but will eventually get the success her talent deserves.

We also had Jay and Tom from The Wanted on the show. The boy band are arguably Britain’s second biggest after those little scamps One Direction.

The Wanted have been in America for ages where they have achieved huge success.

But the UK fans have been a bit tetchy and impatient waiting for their third album which has been delayed by over a year.

It will finally make an appearance in November.

Tom told me the album was finished last year but they pulled it at the last minute because they were only 70% happy with it.

They have spent the last year honing it and the fan’s wait will be rewarded when it finally comes out.

They told me how glad they were to be back in the UK and were quite often homesick purely because “The Breakfasts in America are diabolical.

The beans are horrible and they have potatoes and peppers – that’s just wrong!”