Cher Lloyd: ‘I’m not the kind of girl to be falling out of taxis drunk and getting my bits out’
The straight-talking X-Factor alumnus tells about finding success Stateside and returning just in time with her new album
Cher Lloyd: ‘At the end of the day, The X Factor gave me a massive platform. I took it, and I used it’
Presumably, the title Sorry I’m Late isn’t a reference to your questionable punctuality. It’s quite a stressful thing, picking an album title – you never really know what you wanna call it. I was meant to release this album back in November, but it got pushed back. Lots of people got involved and I was fighting to get it put out, but I really felt like people weren’t listening to me about wanting to release it quicker. I mean, apart from in America, I haven’t really released any new music anywhere else – so I think the album title is fitting.
You’ve been spending a lot of time in the US lately, working with the likes of Demi Lovato and Ne-Yo in the past, and T.I.. on the new album. Is the US a priority for you? I wouldn’t say that it’s my priority; my big priority is globally. I really feel that I’d like all countries to hear my music, because I know that I have fans in lots of different countries. With Twitter, you can really notice who your fans are and what countries they’re tweeting from. It’s exciting for me to see that.
It’s been four years since The X Factor – does having a second album under your belt mean that you’re less defined by your time on the show? Oh, definitely – especially in America. Most people there don’t even know that I came from the show. But as the time goes by, more people have stopped referring to me as “the girl from The X Factor”, which is really nice, because it shouldn’t define me. But at the end of the day, The X Factor gave me a massive platform. I took it, and I used it – so it’s really good to know that I’d been on a TV show but I’d gone away and actually used it to my advantage.
You’ve never been afraid to speak your mind. Has pop music generally become too sanitised? t’s having a balance. There are certain things I would never do, and I wouldn’t want my future children to pull up on the internet and see me doing (laughs). At the end of the day, I’m not the kind of girl to be falling out of taxis drunk and getting my bits out – but I am the type of girl to speak my mind and be myself.
You got a bit of a reputation as a “bad girl” for that same reason . . . I think, in the past, there have been some things that I’ve said that have been absolutely ridiculous and unneeded – but I think I’ve gained so much more experience that the only time I ever say things is when it’s valid and it’s worth saying. And I think that’s what I do now. Not everyone is going to like me 100 per cent of the time, and some people might not like me at all – but that’s life. You come across that every day, whether you’re a pop star or you work in an office. But in my situation, when I say something, I know that it’s going to be printed in every newspaper (laughs).
Have you ever been under pressure to wind your neck in and play the game? No, I don’t respond well to people trying to change me, because it’s not gonna happen (laughs). I know that, in the future, I’m going to say things that people are maybe gonna frown upon or think is wrong, but I can’t live my life watching everything that I say, and every movement, because I’d have a boring life, y’know? I’d rather just be myself, and if I say something wrong, I’ll get a telling-off for it, and then I’ll forget about it.
As your success has grown, have your reasons for making music changed? I think it’s really important for your reasons to make music to be right – and if your reason to make music is just to have a hit every time, it’s stressful. That’s not something that you can expect to do every time. [I do it because] I enjoy it, and the day that I stop enjoying what I do is the day that I pack it in. I don’t want to live a life where I’m not happy. I think that’s my number-one thing: I wanna be happy – so why would I be in an industry where every day is a struggle?