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Louis Tomlinson Opens Up in Revealing New Profile: ‘What Have I Really Done to Contribute Here?’

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In a newly published profile, One Direction bandmate Louis Tomlinson opens up about struggles he faced after his mother’s death and his time as a member of the superstar British boyband.

Harry [Styles] comes across very cool. Liam [Payne]’s all about getting the crowd going, doing a bit of dancing … and then there’s me,” Tomlinson tells The Guardian’s Tom Lamont after noting that Zayn Malik had the “fantastic voice” and Niall Horan was “fearless” and “lovely.”

Tomlinson shot to fame in 2010 when he and four other British teens tried out for stardom on The X Factor and formed the band now most famous for hit songs including “Story of My Life” and “What Makes You Beautiful.”

Despite the instant success, however, Tomlinson admits he had a hard time feeling comfortable in the band.

“You know I didn’t sing a single solo on the X Factor,” Tomlinson says. “A lot of people can take the piss out of that. But when you actually think about how that feels, standing on stage every single week, thinking: ‘What have I really done to contribute here?'”

Here's my cover for The Observer . Out Sunday 😎 @obsmagazine

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The brutally honest interview comes more than a year after the band announced their hiatus, something Tomlinson reveals he was against. He says when they began discussing the hiatus, Tomlinson was just beginning to feel confident in himself as a singer and performer.

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Now, the 25-year-old is following his former bandmate’s steps and embarking on a solo career.

“If you’d asked me a year or 18 months ago: ‘Are you going to do anything as a solo artist?’ I’d have said absolutely not,” Tomlinson admits.

Shortly after his mother’s death following a terminal diagnosis of leukemia earlier in 2016, Tomlinson released his single “Just Hold On.”

In the profile Tomlinson open ups about his close relationship with his mother, Johannah Deakin, and how up until her passing the two had an unbreakable bond, with one memory standing out from the rest.

“I remember the day I lost my virginity. I hadn’t even told any of my mates and I was, like: ‘Mum? I know this is really weird. But I’ve got to tell you…’ I remember thinking this is a bizarre conversation to be having with your mother. But it’s testament to how comfortable she made me,” Tomlinson recalls.

While Tomlinson is preparing to release a new single with American singer Bebe Rexha, he is also raising his 1-year-old son Freddie Reign, who he had with Briana Jungwirth. 

Lad and Dad

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In January, Tomlinson and his family celebrated Freddie’s first birthday.

Looking back, Tomlinson says in the profile he knows his mother is the real reason he is where he is today: “I’m not gonna claim this is all for me mum. But it was definitely… It was…”