Kemi Olivia Alemoru caught up with reality TV star Jake Quickenden to speak about his days in the jungle, X Factor, tabloid rumours and his new album.
So we’ve seen a lot of you this past year; you’ve been on X Factor, I’m A Celeb and ITVBe’s Seven Days with so how has it been for you?
Err crazy! Just absolutely mental like I cannot get my head around what’s happening to me. I just don’t tend to think about it, I’m just trying to do everything I can for now and keep gigging. I’m doing whatever comes my way really because you don’t really know how long this will all last for. Hopefully I will keep progressing but it’s all so crazy isn’t it?
It’s a lot to fit in a year.
Exactly! People usually do X Factor or I’m A Celebrity – not many do both in the same year. And also I guess they’re the two biggest reality shows as well.
They are – so I guess you can tick them off your list! With all that in mind from Mel B to the jungle is there anything left that even scares you?
No not really. Mel B never really scared me anyway I thought she was lovely. She was so supportive. She did always say what she thought, but I think that’s cool. As for the jungle I got over the only thing that I’m really scared of and that’s spiders. Because when they are sat on your face and you can’t get them off then you’ll get over it pretty quickly!
I saw that you tweeted that you’d like to be the next Xtra Factor presenter – just to let you know that 78% of people polled on the Metro thought that was a great idea. Any luck with that so far?
Well that was just me clicking on that poll over and over again… Obviously I’d love to get the opportunity. I think sometimes it’s time for a new presenter to come up – the jobs are always given to people we’ve already seen so it would be nice if somebody else was given a chance.
You’re obviously getting a lot of offers so it’s hard to separate the rumours from what might actually be your next professional conquest. Apparently Gainsborough football club want you to play…
Football is my first love. It’s what I wanted to be whilst I was growing up – it’s kind of any boy’s dream. You either go to a school that is rugby oriented or one that loves football, and I was in a football mad area. I still play semi-pro football.
How on earth do you find the time?
I don’t – I’m very unfit. I come on for about 5 minutes and then I’ve got to go off but I am going to be playing a couple of pre-seasons games for them this year when I’ve got time. We’ll see where it goes from there.
So despite being so busy do you find the time to keep in contact with any of the contestants from I’m a celebrity or X Factor?
Yeah well I was talking to Casey and Tom Mann earlier on Twitter because I found something funny Casey had done. I saw some girl had tweeted Casey saying she had found all these old tweets from Casey’s account spamming Justin Bieber saying “please follow me I’m a big belieber” so I screenshotted it. I speak to Ben and most of the younger lot, and I do try to but we’re all doing different things. For example I was speaking to Lola just today because I’ve just been in Wales and she’s playing there tonight so we do all kind of cross paths every now and again.
Obviously you still see Foggy (Jake is going out with Carl Fogarty’s daughter). I heard that he’s rejected you as the singer at his 50th birthday in favour of James Blunt…
Erm that rumour is true! But actually it’s my last tour date in Liverpool on that day so I’m not going to be back until late. He said don’t bother singing just come and enjoy yourself. Obviously then the papers jumped on it.
What can we expect from your next album?
Something a little bit different. I’ve always been acoustic-y but this time I’m going for a mix of R*&B and pop so we’ll see how it goes. My EP is all produce tracks with no guitar so it might be a bit of a risk but I’m looking forward to performing them on my tour and seeing the response I get. I know I get good responses from my acoustic stuff because it’s all straight from the heart and when you’re chilling out you like to listen to that and listen to the words, but when you’re in the club you want to have a dance and that seems to sell more, so fingers crossed.
Who inspires you musically?
Always been a fan of Justin Timberlake, I think he’s unbelievable. Timberlake dances, plays guitar and piano. He writes and he sings, which is rare. I also love Ed Sheeran and James Bay. I just love good singer-song writers and good artists, not just somebody who can sing, you know?
Is there a possible Tinchy Stryder collab?
I’d love to do something with him, yeah; I still talk to him quite a lot. We’ve spoken about it but we’re both really busy and we need a point where we can both actually get in the studio and do something. I think I’ll just ring him and say do you want to do a song on a day I know he’s free. Maybe I’ll just wait outside his studio with a recorder…
Finally, what are you looking forward to the most on your tour?
Just meeting everyone and getting to meet my fans!
Keeping up with Quickenden, five facts about Jake:
- Not only is he a singer, guitarist and reality TV star he is also a footballer on the side
- All his twitter alerts go straight to his phone because he hasn’t worked out how to turn them off yet
- He doesn’t Google himself as he doesn’t consider himself a celebrity
- Most exciting moment of the year was the jungle
- He expected Tinchy Stryder to take sunglasses as a luxury item into the jungle
Jake Quickenden will be live at Sheffield O2 Academy on July 16. Head to www.o2academysheffield.co.uk for tickets and more.