Photo: One Direction / Instagram
Call it the boy band effect, but it is easy to reduce individual members to a single trait that describes their main appeal and sets them apart from the others.
For popular UK heart-throbs One Direction, Harry Styles and Liam Payne were the standout stars of the quintet.
Then there was Irishman Niall Horan, with his baby-faced charm, and Zayn Malik, with his dashing good looks and solid pipes.
Louis Tomlinson was the quiet, occasional bad boy.
In fact, in a Guardian article last month, Tomlinson, 25, admitted he was, compared to the rest of the guys, “forgettable, to a certain degree”.
He heaped praise on everyone else, including Horan, whom he called “fearless” and “with no sense of arrogance”.
“And then there’s me,” concluded Tomlinson.
Horan, who was in town yesterday to perform a special showcase at the Esplanade Annexe Studio, told regional reporters at The St. Regis Singapore that Tomlinson’s remarks did not do justice to the person he is.
The 23-year-old told The New Paper: “Thanks to him for what he said about me. (As for his comments about himself), it was self-deprecating of him to do that. I don’t think he needed to, but that was his decision.
“He is an unbelievable, important member of One Direction, and we would have lost it a long time ago if not for him. He held us together.
“And as the years went by, he became so much more confident. I remember when I first met him, he barely spoke.
“Years down the line, with him making his own music, it shows his increasing confidence.”
Since the group’s hiatus last year, all five young men have been busy focusing their energy towards putting out their individual projects.
Horan has released two singles – This Town and Slow Hands – and hopes to put out his debut solo album later this year.
He declined to reveal anything about it other than it contains his “best” work.
Horan said: “It is the most beautiful, most precious and most delicate song I’ve ever written.”
It is uncertain if the album will feature any musical collaborations, but he “would love” to work with US pop star Katy Perry, 32.
“Katy and I share similar tastes in music, so I wouldn’t rule it out,” he said.
Recently, Perry had claimed in a cheeky Instagram post that he was a “stage 5 clinger” and that he has been “following” her.
She also said during a recent interview with an Australian radio show: “(He is) always trying to like get my number to maybe, like, flirt with me but I’m, like, ‘I can babysit you!’ I’m like your mum.”
Horan was later quoted as jokingly telling Perry to stop being “mean” to him.
After all this flirtatious banter, the question had to be asked: Could there be anything more between the pair in the future?
Horan said with a laugh: “I think she has pretty much ruled it out. That one’s over.
“I don’t know if the Irish charm worked.
“It’s always a good laugh with her but it’s done now. She’s had her say.”
This story was originally published on The New Paper, July 8, 2017.