OTB Meets JLS

I met the JLS boys chilling out in the plush, luxurious surroundings of the Mayfair hotel on a rather miserable British November morning to talk Christmas, X Factor and marriage…

I asked them if now they’ve reached high levels of stardom, the Christmas present requests from friends and family have got more extravagant. Marvin revealed “my little brother doesn’t need anything, a lot of the clothes that I get given I pass on to himâ€?. They all agreed it’s a blessing to be able to afford to treat their nearest and dearest.

Reminiscing over Christmas time as kids Aston said “one year I finally got a bike as good as the rest of my mates. It was way too big for me, of course, and I could barely reach the handlebars but it was wicked.â€?

Oritse added “My favourite present had to be my Ghostbuster action figures!â€?

This festive season the group have teamed with Sky 1 HD to create A Very JLS Christmas. The programme is set to include performances of their biggest hits, intimate and exclusive chats, winter sports, and much more, in the setting of a magical winter wonderland. Ortise admitted that they’d had a lot of requests to throw a Christmas party, so they’re happy to finally be able to organise the forthcoming bash.

Their families will be joining them along with 400 hand-picked fans. I wondered how they chose who to invite amongst their devoted fan base and JB explained “we held a video screening at a theatre with 150 people and picked some fans from there. We also decided to reach out to loyal fans across the UK who maybe can’t afford to go to our concerts or have had hard times…â€?

Top of the Christmas charts is a position much fought for and is one often occupied by X Factor’s most recent winner. The boys, who won second place on the show in 2008, disagree with speculation that the competition is no longer relevant in the music industry. JB remarked “it’s still a great platform to get into the business!â€? and Ortise continued “the show still has legs, it’s the most auditioned for in the world and the exposure for the talent is incredible…â€?

Marvin fervently stated that he doesn’t believe there’s any kind of ‘fix’ going on: “it’s a load of rubbish, whoever’s on there is on there because people are keeping them in.â€? He admits, though, that Simon Cowell needs to come back as a judge next year.

Although the band are jetting off to exotic locations for New Years, they’re keeping it cosy and family-orientated at Christmas – especially as this is Marvin’s first as a married man, with a baby on the way.

Despite his wedded bliss the rest of the guys certainly aren’t planning to get down on one knee any time soon. Aston commented “Marriage takes so much work…â€? he laughed, “I remember Marv’ walking into the dressing room once and spending hours arranging a seating plan and I just thought wow that’s a lot of effort!â€?

None of the guys bother with New Years resolutions and yet their popularity and success has sky-rocketed. So, as the sharply-dressed Mayfair hotel doorman bid me farewell, I thought I might not partake in the tradition this year either…

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