Darren Milby column

Matt Cardle.
Matt Cardle.
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Matt Cardle is becoming a regular on my show on The Bay.

The former X Factor winner seems to have been on more than me.

Matt has become a good friend of the show.

Last time he was on – he was just about to release his third album.

It was his second independent release and was a huge success, reaching number eleven in the charts despite the lack of support from a major record label.

Since then things have taken a different direction for Matt which resulted in a well-publicised stint in rehab at the start of the year.

I started by asking him if he is now in a good place.

“I am in the best place ever.” He told me.

“I am top banana at the moment. Clean serene and feeling healthy.

“It was a very short, sharp road from where I was but I’m glad it happened.

“It was absolutely necessary and I wanted to get clean for myself, my friends, my family and my fans.”

Matt always seemed so happy and in control so I fairly shocked when I heard about his problems.

He was admitted into rehab after an addiction to prescription drugs got to a dangerous level.

Being in the public eye there is nowhere to hide.

Although I imagine there is something liberating about getting everything out in the open. Matt agreed.

“There was muttering of speculation as to why I was there and I wanted to get out some of the reasons behind it.

“I now get to raise awareness about prescription drugs.

“They are safe if taken as told by the doctor but if not they are absolutely lethal.

“I just lost a friend three days ago to exactly the same thing and it’s a reminder to just how close I was.”

Thankfully Matt Cardle is back on full fettle and hitting the road in April.

I think it’s really impressive the way he has survived the X Factor winner’s curse.

Simon Cowell paints himself out as a great music mogul but seems clueless as to what to do with the talent after the show is over.

Most of them release one album, get dropped by the label and disappear into obscurity.

Matt is releasing credible music that he has written himself and has funded himself and he is making it work.

His tours are a sell-out and every time I have him on the show my Twitter goes into a frenzy.