A WIGAN band is warning young musicians to be wary of the bright lights of reality TV after a disappointing experience in front of the X Factor judges.
Vocal group On The Line, who were formed more than a decade ago at St John Rigby College, were dismissed by the talent show’s panel after being encouraged to perform a cover of a Gary Barlow song rather than one of their own self-penned tunes.
The group, formed of singer and guitarist Si Roddam and vocalists Mike Evans and Andy Reid, also known as Reidy, battled through three rounds of auditions to get their chance in front of Gary Barlow, Louis Walsh, Tulisa Contostavlos and Mel B, including playing for the show’s producers in London.
Having not made it through to the final stages of the show, the group have returned to the longer road to stardom, writing, performing and recording their own songs.
With a new single out next week and a full-length album slated for a Christmas release, On The Line are keen to encourage other Wigan acts to remember there are other ways into the music business than the short-cut offered by reality TV programmes.
Si, 29, said: “We were disappointed we didn’t get to perform one of our own songs, as we were really confident with them. They told us just before we went on to audition we were playing a cover of Patience, which was our plan B.
“At the time we just went along with it. We were panicking and rushing around because we’d been doing a lot of silly stuff with Jedward filming for the Xtra Factor.
“We initially went to two auditions in Manchester, and then we had to do a third audition in London, which consisted of us singing for various people on various floors of an office block and sitting through interrogations about us and the band by the show’s researchers.
“I would guess it’s standard protocol but none of us had ever entered any of these programmes before so it was a bit weird.
“We weren’t too disheartened. TV shows are what they are, which is entertainment for the viewers, and a lot of the time they need drama.
“They do spit out some good talent, but if you are an original artist you should believe in what you are doing, and you will get more out of that than standing in queues year after year.”
On The Line have already gone from strength to strength since their experience on X Factor, supporting Marcus Collins in Liverpool in front of 20,000 people and signing a deal to release their new single Misguided Soul through Bradbury Records.