Wednesday, 4 September 2013


On the final day of last month's Glastonbury Festival, Mr Tom Odell performed in the giant tent otherwise known as the John Peel Stage. Thousands gathered in sweltering conditions to hear the winner of the 2013 Brits Critics' Choice award perform songs from his debut album, Long Way Down. In an atmosphere that resembled a born-again convention, Mr Odell gave his life and soul to the show, and duly took the roof off. Nobody there queried his artistic bona fides, or processed his music through a filter of cynicism. And yet, six days before his triumphant set at Worthy Farm, the 22-year-old Chichester-born singer had been caught up in a media firestorm when his father, enraged by a scathing, 0/10 review of Long Way Down in NME, had telephoned the music magazine to make his feelings plain. News of both the review and the phone call quickly went viral, with Ms Lily Allen - who signed Mr Odell to her record label - taking to Twitter to defend him. Over the course of the next few days, the release of the album looked set to be framed solely within NME's terms of reference. Mr Odell had other ideas, however, and two trump cards up his sleeve. One of these was his ability to create musical alchemy in a live setting, a trick he displayed on that Sunday afternoon in Somerset; the other was played later that same day, when Long Way Down entered the UK album chart at No.1. Which is, by anybody's standards, a pretty emphatic riposte.

'"I don't think there are many times in most people's careers where you go from basically being unknown to being put in a position where you're suddenly doing 15 interviews in one day. That was a bit of a jump, to put it mildly. My biggest issue was that there I was spending all my time talking about music and none actually making it, and I never want to be in that situation again. It's so not the reason I do this."

Long Way Down is out now. For Mr Odell's tour dates click here



Rachel S said...

Tom Odell is one handsome man! Love that he is interested in fashion. Also love how talented he is. His track "Grow Old With Me" is amazing <3

Jordan said...

If you like the way he dresses, you'll love the way he sings! His album comes out on the 17th:)