Janet Devlin has a maturity beyond her 19 years.
And when the Irish singer tells you she planned a year out at 16 to try her hand at a music career, that comes to make sense.
Her year out ended up being a whirlwind experience of making the live finals of The X Factor in 2011. Flame-haired Janet quickly became a favourite in the ITV talent show after her first audition showcased her tender vocals with Elton John’s Your Song.
After the series, it was revealed she topped the public vote in the first four weeks, but faced a shock exit at the judges’ hands in week eight when she landed in the bottom two against Misha B.
But with characteristic maturity, regularly countered by an ultra-girly giggle, this didn’t faze her.
“After the X Factor, things are so often very controlled,” she said. “I went on to meet people, to get to make an album and to do what I have always wanted to do. But often people get put into record deals and get told what to sing.
“If I’d had one more week in the show, I would have had an automatic record deal so going when I did worked in my favour as I didn’t have to do anything. The things I was offered straight after, so much money for a 17-year-old, it was like ‘Woah!’. Then you hear what their plans were and it really wasn’t for me.”
She admits there have been ‘ups and downs’ since leaving The X Factor merry-go-round, but is happy that ‘no one can take the blame for these things other than me’.
Since her TV experience, Janet’s been busy writing, often turning poems she writes into lyrics in the studio. She said:“I always carry a leather binder in my back pack, and write about what I’m doing and seeing then go into the studio to find a nice melody and match it to the words.
“It’s great, it makes the song writing sessions really fast, we can start recording and adding music, building the track and putting in harmonies and getting people involved.”
Janet’s youth shines through again at the prospect of visiting Blackpool for Friday’s North Pier Live! show – and she’s back in the resort just a week later for the Switch-On festival.
“I’ve never been to Blackpool before, so I’m going to be making up for it and I can’t wait to see it all,” she said.
North Pier Live!, North Pier, Blackpool, Friday, 7.30pm, starring Matt Cardle and Janet Devlin.
Visit www.ticketmaster,co.uk to book tickets.
The weekend’s shows will support the North West Air Ambulance.