X Factor 2012: Exclusive interview with Joseph Whelan revealed he’d LOVE to go back to the show but he’d ‘Avoid’ Nicole who’s “Already picked her winner!”
As fans of The X Factor will know, rock singer Joseph Whelan was axed from the contest at the end of this year’s Boot Camp, and there has of course been fury from fans of the show that Joe – who has a powerhouse voice – didn’t make it to Judges’ Houses while ‘weaker’ singers did.
And as regular visitors to Unreality will know, we, supported by our lovely readers, have been campaigning on Twitter to get Joe reinstated to The X Factor using the #bringbackjosephwhelan.
So today, I spoke with Joe about how he feels about being ditched from the show, as well as a whole host of other pressing issues, such as, “Are you single?” and it’s bad news ladies; he isn’t!
The lovely Joe has reunited with his son Kian’s mum, Maxine, and he happily reported that they’re “getting on great.” Awww.
So without further ado, I’ll get on with telling you what Joe had to say, and first, I asked, “How did you feel when you were told you hadn’t made it through to Judges’ Houses?”
To which Joe replied, “I felt devastated to be honest. I felt like my dream had been snatched away from me, and it took me a while to get over it…
“I questioned my ability and wondered, ‘Did I do something wrong’ but to be honest, I think I did everything right. I smashed my performances at the audition and at Boot Camp, so maybe the show just didn’t want me!”
I then asked Joe, “In today’s Sun, you’re quoted as saying, ‘The X Factor set me up for a fall. They shafted me by praising me so highly – then sending me home.’ Is that in fact how you feel?”
He replied, “No, I didn’t say that. It was blown out of proportion. The X Factor know what they’re looking for; they want people who will be celebrities as well, and maybe they didn’t see a celeb in me.”
He added, “I’m very grateful to The X Factor, but I just don’t understand why they gave me so much air time then sent me home. I don’t see how they can justify that.
“But yeah, I can’t say anything bad about The X Factor because of the opportunity they gave me, because everything that’s happened since, all the support from fans and my new single going straight in the charts – well, it wouldn’t have happened without The X Factor.”
I then asked, “And how do you feel that singers who arguably aren’t nearly as talented as you are made it through while you didn’t?” to which Joe replied, “Look, I don’t have hard feelings towards the singers…
“Like, Rylan Clark’s a really good bloke and a good mate. I got on well with him and it’s been made to look like I’ve got something against him because he stayed in the competition.
“I haven’t at all, and anyway, the place at Judges’ Houses was more between me and Jake Quickenden really.
“And every year there are the acts who’re more celebs than singers, like Jedward or Wagner, and Rylan will be a celebrity; he’s born to be a celeb!”
Joe continued, “The thing is with X Factor, they like to develop people and turn them into something else maybe. A bit like One Direction, and they knew they could never change me like that…
“So in that regard, there was a bit of a stalemate because although I’m looking to develop, I wouldn’t let anyone change me into something I’m not.”
I then asked Joe, “Was there any reason – that perhaps we viewers didn’t get to see – as to why the judges didn’t put you through? For instance, were there any of the judges that you didn’t get on with?”
He replied, “No not at all. I was well behaved to honest! I did what I was told, but no, there was no animosity.”
The remark Joe was referring to came when Nicole said of him, “‘He looks like he would be hanging around the camp fire and passing around the guitar and singing. But is he a star?”
Joe went on to say, “What irritated me about that was that she was judging me on just that one performance [with my guitar] but at my audition, I sang a full on rock song.”
He added, “But to be honest, I wouldn’t have got in Nicole’s category anyway because she’s already chosen her winner – Jahmene. Nobody else would get a look in.”
And when I asked if he would rather have sung his own material, as both Ella Henderson and Lucy Spraggan did – though only Lucy sang her own song at Boot Camp; Ella of course sang a Cher cover – Joe said, “Well at first, we were all told we could use our own original material…
“But then all of a sudden, because they were short on time, they said everyone has to do covers.
“Well, Lucy didn’t, she got to do her own songs, and I was a bit upset about that because I had a really good song of my own that I was going to do. But like I say, we were told we couldn’t do our own songs so…”
I asked Joe if he was annoyed that in that regard, it’s apparently one rule for some and not others, to which he replied, “Yeah a bit, and like, at Boot Camp, Jahmene [Douglas] completely messed up, but they let him off and only took his very first audition into account.
“I felt like that was a bit unfair really, because everyone else was being judged on the Boot Camp performances only. Except Lucy as well; like Jahmene, the judges let her off when she messed up.”
Joe added, “The thing is, I didn’t mess up, that’s what shocked me really. I’ve been performing and writing my own songs for ten years now, so I think the decision [to send me home] was questionable. And I wish I’d had the opportunity to do my own songs.”
I then asked Joe, “Were you angry when you heard that two boy bands had been brought back to the show in the Groups category while you, presumably, haven’t been asked back?”
However, he greeted my question with shocked surprise, saying he had no idea that had happened. I explained to him that as we reported on Monday, after Rough Copy were ditched from the show over issues with a band member’s UK visa, Triple J – who’ve become Union J with the addition of former solo singer George Shelley – and Times Red joined Louis Walsh’s acts.
An astonished Joe said, “I didn’t know anything about that! That’s bad… that’s mad!”
I then asked Joe if he would in fact return to the show if he was asked, and he said, “Oh yeah, in a second! But I haven’t been asked.
“I’d love to go back and if the show’s bosses go by the support I’ve been getting from the public, then hopefully, they would take me back.”
He went on to say that the support he mentioned from fans and viewers of the show has been “overwhelming”, and added, “I’d just like to thank everybody who’s supported me.
“I’d like to thank Unreality readers from the bottom of my heart. They’ve been amazing on Twitter and there’s just so much support. Thank you so much for showing me so much love.
“And I want my fans to know that if I did get to go back on X Factor, I’d come back with a new energy and more confidence, and I’d smash it!
“I’d work really hard to prove that everyone who’s supported me was right, and I can do it.”
He added, “The thing is, if it was all just the public vote, if the judges didn’t make decisions about who went through from Boot Camp and it was up to the public, then going by the support I’ve had, I’d still be there now.”
I then asked Joe, “So what’s ahead for you right now?” to which he replied, “Well, gigging mainly, but my single’s out this week and it’s already on its way to the top 20, so that’s incredible.”
I then mentioned to Joe that an article in The Sun had stated that he was hoping his single, I Lie Lonely, could get to No1 at Christmas, and maybe even pip The X Factor winner to that coveted spot.
In response, Joe laughed and said, “That would be amazing wouldn’t it?! Yeah, I’d love that.”
As mentioned earlier, Joe told me that he’s back with his son’s mum Maxine, and that they’re very happy, but I asked him how he felt about the focus The X Factor put on his son Kian on the show, and if he felt it was in any way some kind of ‘sob story’ angle.
He said, “No not at all. I loved it, and he loved it! And good things have come out of it for him too; he’s got modeling jobs and stuff, so yeah, it was good, and it’s lovely that people say how cute he is!”
Coming toward the end of the interview, I asked Joe who he wants to see winning the show, to which he replied, with no hesitation, “Ella, definitely Ella, she’s amazing.”
He replied laughing, “Well, I’m not going to marry anyone, so in that case, I’d Avoid Nicole and Snog Tulisa and Caroline.”
Joe’s single, I Lie Lonely, is available for download right now on his website at josephwhelanofficial.com
And I’ve promised Joe that all of us here at Unreality will keep our fingers firmly crossed that the show’s bosses do reinstate him and soon! So let’s keep #bringbackjosephwhelan going on Twitter!
Would you like to see him back?
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