Popworld - The end of the line - Westlife fill in the blanks
What do you ask the band that have asked everything? That's the dilemma POPWORLD had when We found out we were going to be chatting to Westlife. After much head scratching we came up with a solution - let the boys do the work! We'll come up with half a sentence and they have to finish it. Brilliant! Here's how the guys (without Bryan who was off congratulating wife Kerry after her jungle exploits) got on...
I miss Bryan because...
Kian: I don't miss Bryan.
Shane: Because he's not here.
Nicky: No, come on. I'm not having that.
Shane: OK, I miss Bryan because I miss all the jokes and the laughs we have with him everyday.
I don't miss Bryan because...
Nicky: [laughs] I don't enjoy his jokes and his laughs.
Not a lot of people know this but...
Kian: I surf a lot.
Last night I was...
Kian: An umbrella!
Nicky: That'll keep 'em wondering!
Mark: Asleep. Before that I was watching telly.
The worst thing I've ever done is...
Shane: Hmmm, the worst thing I've ever done is...
Nicky: What about when you robbed from the rich to give to the poor?
Shane: It was when I used to rob Pound coins off my mum and dad out of our till in the cafe. And now they know!
I'd go solo tomorrow if it wasn't for the fact...
Mark: That nobody wants to offer me £5 million.
Nicky: That nobody would buy my solo album. (awwwww!)
Beds burning on a beach in a video are a good idea because...
Kian: [sarcastic] It's cool.
Shane: We certainly don't know.
Nicky: Hey, we're actually going in rotation. It's not your go.
Kian: Because it's cool and trendy, or so the people in the video think.
Mark: Beds burning in a video is what?
Nicky: It's not your go. Just wait your turn.
While answering these questions I'm actually thinking...
Mark: I'd like to be in a nice restaurant.
All: In angels! [laugh]
Shane: I believe our tour this year will be our best tour yet.
Don't touch my...
Kian: Cow shit.
Nicky: It's true though.
I can't say the word...
Mark: I can't say the word... I can say most words to be honest. Actually, how can I tell you the word if I can't say it?
Well, some people have trouble pronouncing certain words.
Mark: Oh, I see. Hmmm, I'm going to pass this onto you.
Nicky: Adrenaline. That's what I can't say that.
Shane: But you just said it.
Women are great, however...
Kian: They do fart.
Nicky: That's good. Or they do need to make sure they shave.
The point is...
Kian: A place in Dublin [referring to a concert venue called The Point].
Nicky: Oh, that's a good one.
I didn't mean to...
Shane: To fart in the radio station today, but I did and it blew the boys away.
Never, ever, in any circumstances would I...
Nicky: Drink and drive.
Shane: Do a parachute jump.
Nicky: It's not your go. Drink and drive.
It's obvious but...
Kian: It's out on the 23rd.
Nicky: That's good. [claps]
Sam and Mark should be...
The best bit of advice I can give is...
Shane: Don't worry, be happy.
I hate people who...
Nicky: Try to get us to say things on tape. Only joking.
Shane: People who talk too much.
No good music has ever come from...
Shane: A lot of bands out at the moment.
Nicky: Are you just going to answer all the questions? It's my go. No good music has ever come from an out of tune piano.
Kian: Very good, Nicky.
Straight after this...
Shane: I want to go home.
The thing we've done that makes us cringe is...
All: 'I Have A Dream'
Hell is... Shane: A place I hope to never be.
I won't go out of bed...
Kian: On a Sunday.
Shane: But you do though.
Kian: How do you know what I do on a Sunday?
Shane: I work with you on Sundays! [laughs]
In 10 years...
Nicky: I'll be in bed.
Kian: A billion pounds.
If I could go back in time...
Nicky: I'd do the lottery numbers last week.
Mark: You'd probably get it wrong though.
The worst person I've been forced to talk to is...
Shane: A lot of people in this industry.
Mark: The two presenters from POPWORLD!
I'm glad I'm not Simon Cowell because...
Shane: I'd have to wear my trousers so high every day.
Nicky: And it would crush my nuts!
This isn't the best interview I've ever been in but...
Kian: It's been quite fun.
Sunday Mirror - Westlife: we're not the fab four
After Bryan McFadden quit Westlife earlier this month, some thought Britain's biggest pop band would split up.
But speaking exclusively to the Sunday Mirror, Nicky Byrne insists they are looking forward to their first world tour as a four-piece - starting tomorrow in Belfast.
We talked to Nicky about Bryan's decision, rumours of fights in the band and his marriage to Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern's daughter Georgina.
SM: It's been three weeks since Bryan quit the band... is it still a shock not to have him around?
NB: Not at all. I don't know if it is just a honeymoon period, but when Bryan and Kerry had Molly we did stuff as a four-piece, so it is not new. We certainly don't miss him.
SM: Do you feel Bryan left you all in the lurch?
NB: No, because he told us when he told us. It is a big thing to change the vocals so I am glad he did tell us early rather than on tour.
SM: There were claims that Bryan's exit had brought the curtain down on three years of rows within the band - including fights - following his stag night romp with Amy Barker.
NB: Absolute nonsense. We have always been 110 per cent behind Bryan. We are all lads - we wouldn't be bothered about someone having an affair. It is not something we would promote, but if it happens you back your friend. And we are closer than brothers now.
SM: Has he been in touch?
NB: More than I thought he would be. He invited us all to dinner this week. We couldn't go because we are working 8am till midnight.
SM: Is it possible to be in a touring boyband and be a father?
NB: I would love to be a dad but it would be hard to be away 95 per cent of the year. It was hard for Bryan, but I wouldn't rule it out.
SM: You're big golf fans. Who's the Tiger Woods of Westlife?
NB: We are all very competitive on Tiger Woods Playstation game and I am current champion. Bryan was the best in real golf.
SM: What's your favourite tipple in the 19th hole?
NB: Heinkein or a Guinness. There is nothing nicer on a sunny day to sit in a beer garden with mates.
SM: When Westlife started did you think you'd be riding high in the top of the charts all these years on?
NB: We knew we would be together this long, but I didn't know if we would stay as big as we are. We know now is a big opportunity for us.
SM: Your biggest extravagance since fame?
NB: My house. It cost £2.5million. It is a dream come true. It has 20 rooms but we tend to stay in the kitchen and one of the sitting rooms. I always wanted a full-size snooker table so I have a boys basement with a bar and Playstation.
SM: Which band mate do you bicker with most?
NB: All of them. Mark is the most chilled out. If he was any slower he would be going backwards. Kian is the most tense.
SM: Which celebrity would you most like to be left alone with on a desert island?
NB: I am married so I wouldn't want a lady. I'm not sure I'd like to be on a desert island with a celebrity.
SM: Who's the celebrity you've disliked most?
NB: Liam Gallagher. When we were first on the scene we went to a party. We thought we were the greatest. When we went over to Liam and said we were Ronan's new band he said: "So fucking what."
SM: Groupies... what's the most desperate thing a fan has done to try and woo you?
NB: They've done everything. Flash their breasts, throw their knickers. It's all good fun.
SM: After a concert... straight to bed or boozing till sunrise?
NB: Definitely boozing until sunrise. We have calmed down a bit over the years but after a show you feel that you should be moving and dancing.
SM: Ronan used to be your co-manager, what do you think of his current tunes?
NB: I liked his last one - She Believes In Me - a lot. Ronan needs to get another great album out. People should lay off him. He's very, very good.
SM: Does your father-in-law ever ask your advice on politics?
NB: Never. I am interested in politics because everything is politics really. But I am not so interested in party politics.
SM: What's the most romantic thing you've done for Georgina?
NB: The wedding. That was a great day, but I also proposed on Christmas morning and gave her a puppy. That was special.
SM: Do either of you ever get jealous?
NB: After ten years trust is taken for granted.
SM: What's the perfect Sunday? Relaxing in bed with Georgina or watching the footie on TV?
NB: My dad and I always go for dinner in the evening. I will also visit my grandmother. But if I am home I'll be very hungover after a mad one with my mates so I spend a bit of time in bed.
Star Magazine - The Star Interview: Westlife
It’s 2.30pm on a chilly Wednesday afternoon. We’re sitting in a musty snooker hall in London’s Kings Cross waiting for the Westlife boys to join us for a Rat-Pack inspired shoot. And, of course, they’re late. Typical, eh?
The boys are in town to promote their new swing album, Allow Us To Be Frank, which hits the shops in November. It has been a tough year for the band, after Brian McFadden quit suddenly in the spring. A lot is riding on the new album and the boys are keen to ensure everybody knows about it.
Finally, 20 minutes late, Westlife arrive, all dolled up in their Rat Pack gear. They look great, and, boy, are they eager to shoot some pool with us. But what we really want to know about, of course, is what they make of the Brian and Kerry saga, their own love lives, and whether Mark Feehily is hiding a secret boyfriend. So after a few quick games, we get firmly stuck in...
Right, let’s ask you straight. After all this time, aren’t you sick of being seen as a bunch of Cliff Richards?
S: People call us squeaky clean all the time, but we don’t try to be, we just kind of are. We’re lads, we have a drink, but we don’t try to create dirty stories like some other pop stars do.
N: To be honest, we don’t care what people think of us. If they think we’re in bed at 10pm in frilly pyjamas, that’s up to them.
So are you telling us you wear frilly pyjamas?
N: Ha ha ha ha. No, I don’t wear any pyjamas, to be totally honest with you.
K: We’re the same as any 24-year-olds. We do go out, and if that means staying out until 9am in the morning – which it usually does – so be it. Besides, people don’t think we’re squeaky clean any more. There have been far too many pictures of us falling out of nightclubs.
Really? We don’t seem to have seen that many...
K: We’re good at keeping away from photographers.
N: Not that I’m slagging off other bands, but I think it’s more classy not to be pictured coming out of those same old clubs. A great night out for me doesn’t involve a paparazzi shot at the end of it.
You’re pop stars, you must have dabbled in sex, booze and orgies...
N: We’re good, well brought up lads. I think it’s an Irish thing. We weren’t into drugs and all that shite. Yeah, we’ve got pissed out of our heads, but we’ve never done drugs or had orgies.
M: Before I got into this, I was warned about getting mixed up in drugs and drink and all that shit, so I expected to see it everywhere I went. But over six years, we’ve only been offered drugs around five times, which is a good figure.
And you’ve always said no, we hope!
M: Oh Jesus, of course we said no.
S: We made a rule from the very beginning that we wouldn’t get involved in drugs because, if we did, it would really mess up things with the band.
Did you ever get, er, close to your fans?
S: There was definitely a lot of girls for the guys, but I was happy with Gillian.
But in the earlier days, when you were 18, 19, you must have wanted to stick your bits about...
S: Jesus Christ, what are you like?
M: Look, we were 18 doing what normal 18-year-olds do.
And you guys must still be beating girls off with a stick. How d’ya cope?
K: It depends on where you go. If you go to those wannabe nightclubs, where all those so-called celebs hang out, that’s where you’ll find those leeches who want to be with you just because of who you are. If they come near me, I just tell them to fuck off. Give me a local boozer in Sligo any day.
Brian was the victim of a kiss-and-tell. Were you all on the same trip when he got naughty with that lap dancer?
N: Yeah, it was on Brian’s stag do. We only found out when a fan handed us the Sunday newspaper. Brian was shocked as he didn’t know it was going to be in the paper either.
When the story came out in the papers, were you angry with Brian because he’d tarnished Westlife’s good reputation?
N: No, not at all. We definitely weren’t worried about our image.
K: We were more worried for Brian. We’d never ever turn our back on him. It really pissed us off when we read stories that we forced him out of the band because we couldn’t forgive him. that’s all shite. We gave all our love to both Brian and Kerry.
Did you tell him off, though?
N: Absolutely not. It was none of our business, just as Brian and Kerry’s split isn’t anyone’s business. We wish the pair of them all the best. They are both lovely.
But their split must have been a shock?
K: Well, we didn’t know what we going on. It was a big shock. We know as much as you.
M: Look, Brian and Kerry are two of our best friends. It’s their business and they will work it out to the best of their ability. We’re talking about people’s lives, so it’s not right for us to gossip about it. They need space.
After Brian-gate, do your partners trust you when you’re away on tour?
S: Well, I don’t think Gillian would have married me if she didn’t trust me. If you’re going to get into this, your lady has to be totally trusting. She has to understand that you’ll be away a lot, otherwise it’ll never work. After seven years, I really do hope that she trusts me.
Do you think she’d ever let the milkman in to leave an extra delivery while you’re on the road though?
S: Er, I don’t know. I doubt it.
Part of the reason Brian quit was because he missed his family when he was away. How do you deal with it?
S: It’s still hard. You miss people terribly. But you still have to go and do your job. That’s the life we’ve chosen.
When you get back from travelling all over the world, are you and Gillian like a pair of rabbits?
S: Obviously when you’re home you want to hug and kiss or whatever. That’s all you need to know. But of course I spend a lot of, er, personal time with Gillian. As much as I can.
Is it easy to keep the passion alive when you’re away so much?
N: Georgina joins me all the time. I think it would be a lot more difficult if we had kids. She flies out to me when I am on tour. We cope with it all very well.
So what do you get up to?
N: Well, fella, I’m not going to discuss our sex life, if that’s what you want, but it’s important to keep the spark alive. As time goes on you do become close friends. We’ve only been married a year but she’s fast become my soulmate. You have to keep the sparkle there and give each other a few little surprises from time to time.
Ooh-er! So has Georgina ever come home and found you in a French maid’s outfit?
N: Ha ha ha! No she bloody hasn’t. She has caught me in other outfits. More masculine ones.
Really? What like? A fireman’s outfit?
N: No. I’m not gonna answer you, so move on.
Er, ok. So, Kian, do you get to see Jodi [Albert] much?
K: Well, at the moment I get to see her about one day a week.
Blimey, it sounds like a prison visit.
K: Well if you love someone, it makes no difference.
Do you think Jodi’s the one?
K: You know what? I do. So far, so good. Unless something drastic changes. With me and Jodi, it’s nice not to see each other every day because when we do hook up, it’s a lot more exciting. She’s leaving Hollyoaks in November, so we should see each other a lot more then.
Mark, you’re the only single member now. What’s going on? Are you fussy or what?
M: In the band everyone’s attached, but my other group of friends are single. I just haven’t found someone I want to get into a long-term relationship with. It’d be great if they walked in the door right now, but I don’t feel the need to go on a desperate search to marry someone.
Do the constant rumours that you’re gay piss you off?
M: No, they don’t bother me in the slightest. Being in a boy band you get asked that all the time. I think it’s funny.
Jordan once said she fancied you because she liked “gay-looking guys”.
M: She said that? Well, I’m flattered she fancied me. But I prefer more down-to-earth people. I like to go out with someone who’s not in the public eye.
Blu Cantrell apparently fancies one of you, too. Bearing in mind she has a porn past, would you be scared stiff if she came onto you?
M: What? She had a porn past?
Yeah, she did softcore. Or was it hardcore?
S: It was some kind of core.
N: Yeah, but not Andrea Corr.
M: Well I don’t really know anything about her, so I can’t really say, can I?
So what are your romantic prospects looking like?
M: Well, it’s personal. If I find someone, I’d hate to think anyone not involved could ruin my relationship. I’d like to have a proper go of it without anyone sticking their noses in. Ok?”
We gotcha Mark. We’ll butt out now then...