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The Daily Mirror’s Cheryl Day
Calling ALL Cheryl fans – today is a day that you don’t want to miss because Mirror Celebs have got a whole day packed full of EXCLUSIVE treats.
Throughout the day we’ll be bringing you exclusive interviews with Cheryl, features, quizzes,and a music surprise to celebrate the upcoming release of her new new single I Don’t Care and album Only Human.
The X Factor judge and pop superstar doesn’t hold back as she talks to Mirror Celeb about X Factor gossip, her new music, why she’s become BFFs with Lauren Silverman and babies.
On the surface, Cheryl looks like the same old Cheryl. But it only takes the smallest of scratches to realize the singer sitting in front of us is a totally different person to the one she was less than two years ago.
You might think one day everything is fine, and then the next you get the rug pulled from under your feet, the 31-year-old tells us.
“You have to reevaluate and reconsider, so living in the moment is the only way you can enjoy your life.”
That’s the theme of her new album Only Human, an upbeat mix of tracks, which she says are a message about living your life and not sweating the small stuff.
The singer’s perched on the edge of a sofa in an exclusive London hotel, dressed casually in ripped jeans and an animal print top but still looking like she’s stepped straight off the X Factor stage on Movie Night, naturally.
She’s glowing and wearing a huge grin – and has everyone reason to be. She’s about to release her fourth solo studio album, scored a number one with the album debut, is back in wowing UK audiences every weekend and is also now better known as Mrs Fernandez-Versini.
When asked if she’s thinking about starting a family soon with Jean-Bernard who she wed back in July, she smiles and tells us: “Oh god. Kimberley just had her baby, a boy who I consider as a nephew. I don’t need my own right now.
“I’ve got two… not so much in Lola, but I feel like I’ve got a little baby to take care of in Lauren on the X Factor, so I’m doing alright with 12 nieces and nephews, somebody on X Factor, and a baby with my best friend.”
When we play a game of word association (watch here) and ‘married’ pops up, Cheryl lets out a little laugh and that beaming grin turns into a megawatt smile.
But just two years ago it was all very different. She was told she had 24 hours to live after contracting malaria and not long after, in 2011, Simon Cowell sacked her from the US version of the X Factor after just one episode. When asked her about her lowest points, she jokes: “How long have you got?”
Continuing, Cheryl says: “Probably when I was sick to be honest. It puts everything into perspective when it’s your health.
“You can have anything in the world but if you haven’t got your health, nothing else matters. Even if you do have money and you’re fortunate to have money, you can’t always pay to be healthy.”
In her new single, out on Sunday, she sings the line ‘I don’t care and it feels so f**king good to say I swear’. But what does she care about now?
“That everything else outside of work is happy and healthy. Family, friends, loved ones, dogs. Not necessarily in that order, but I won’t say the other order as I might get in trouble,” she grins.
Cheryl Fernandez-Versini is sitting cosily in the corner of a plush London hotel sofa, looking at me with those huge Bambi eyes and explaining exactly how she finally reached a stage in her life where she gives zero fucks.
“You get to an age where you’ve been through so much crap that you feel like things are not so important any more,” she says. “I just don’t care. It’s actually nice to feel that relief when you’ve cared so much for so long. I’m a really sensitive person so I care deeply about things. So when that’s gone – and this is on whatever subject, by the way – it’s a nice feeling.”
It’s fair to say that Cheryl is back, and more confident than we’ve ever seen her.
Take the video for her new song, aptly titled “I Don’t Care,” for example. Filmed on a beach, with the star in minimal make-up and an oversized jumper, laughing at the camera and miming the words “Zero. Fucks. Given”, it’s arguably the best she’s ever looked and sounded.
It seems the main reason for this new display of confidence is her two-year hiatus, during which she secretly married Jean-Bernard Fernandez-Versini and recuperated after a solid 10 years in the public eye.
“Since the age of 19 to 29 I didn’t stop,” she says. “I went from being known for singing pop songs and having a great time with my friends to being a judge on The X Factor. And until you experience that, you have no idea what it feels like. My life and career went on a whole new level. A lot happened. I needed a break.”
During that break, she drew up a “bucket list” of sorts, which she called her Fuck It list. Perhaps the most famous item on that list was to “get a big tattoo”.
A photo of that tattoo, which begins midway down her back and extends to the top of her thighs, was shared on Instagram by the tattoo artist, Nikko Hurtado. Within hours it had gone viral online, before appearing on the front pages of the national press.
Did she know Hurtado was going to post that image?
“It was a long, painful day and I don’t think any of us were in the right frame of mind,” Fernandez-Versini says. “It doesn’t look anything like it did then. That was when it was brand, brand new. I love it. It wasn’t for anyone else. And Nikko is an actual artist. He is seriously talented.”
Between painful tattoo sessions, she ticked “swimming with dolphins” off the list, and says the experience was by far the most liberating thing she has ever done.
“There was about 200 of them circling round and showing off,” she says. “One will backflip and the other one will backflip higher. They’re playing. They’re the most human-like mammals you can find. The lady who took us on the tour said they can sense good and bad energy, and not to worry if they don’t come near you – it might just be because you’re nervous.
“But I had one dolphin that just swam round and round me and he was looking at us with one eye. He’d swim towards us, like, ‘Are you going to duck? Or are you playing? Can we play?’ He was doing tricks all around us, and if I looked below there were schools of them swimming around in formations. It was magical.”
Cheryl and Mel B made an appearance on The Jonathan Ross Show this weekend to promote The X Factor and to talk a little bit about ‘I Don’t Care’. Check out the interview below in full and the stills from the show in HQ.
Richard Arnold catches up with Cheryl Cole about her new book, saying goodbye to Girls Aloud and her style.
She also touches upon her love life, admitting she’s ‘very happy’.
Cheryl on This Morning
Cheryl talks to her former Kilimanjaro climbing partner Denise Van Outen about her Tom Daley crush, favourite sweets and the next Girls Aloud get together.
Plus Denise puts some of your questions to the Geordie pop princess, so to find out what Cheryl’s dream job would be, watch the video above…
Cheryl on The Jonathan Ross Show
Click above to watch Cheryl’s interview on The Jonathan Ross Show, also with mini performances of Call My Name and an epic big performance of the new single Under The Sun.
Capital FM interview with James Barr
Cheryl and will.i.am in ES Magazine
Photo Shoots > 2012 > Ram Shirgill :
Cheryl Cole is now known as Cheryl. She gave up her first surname, Tweedy, when she married the footballer Ashley Cole in 2006.
Then he was allegedly unfaithful, and then there was some boomeranging back and forth, with rings coming off fingers and newer, bigger rings that seemed to bellow ‘FORGIVE ME’ back on fingers, and then he was allegedly unfaithful again and then that was that, because Cheryl-Tweedy-Cole-Cheryl may be a bad picker but she is nobody’s fool.
So, of course, it makes sense that you may not, aged 29, relish the prospect of lugging someone else’s surname around with you for the rest of your life. But Tweedy was never going to re-stick. I mean, who is Victoria Adams? And so, for her third album, A Million Lights, she’s just Cheryl, thanks very much. I suspect her manager Will.i.am had a flickering, busy old hand in this branding, because that’s what he does, essentially. He spins and rinses and brands. And she, wisely, listens.
‘He’s a genius,’ she says. ‘He has a genius mind. Just to listen to him…’ It’s a compelling partnership, this self-proclaimed Queen of Chavs and the slightly space-age Black Eyed Peas frontman, solo artist, super-producer, actor, designer and techno-guru from the LA ghetto. It seems clear from the start that one of the reasons they rub along so well is because he talks and she listens.
And, my word, does he talk. He is monosyllabic, dry, locked-in and seems to be battling a stammer until the verbal flood-gates fly open and all of a sudden he’s on a manifesto-centric roll, holding forth, twitchy, lyrical, cheeky. It’s overstimulating stuff. Contrarily, one of the first things apparent in Cheryl is that she is difficult to overstimulate. She is, these days, calm and powerful. She radiates resolve.
We are on the ES shoot in St John’s Wood on a balmy Saturday morning. Cheryl pitches up punctually in a Phillip Lim top, tight jeans and soaring Burberry heels. She is quiet, obliging, self-contained and, as we all know, absurdly pretty. Even Rihanna recently declared the Geordie girl ‘the most beautiful woman I have ever seen’. Because Cheryl is so serene, the entire crew are super-tranquil. Not so when Will slides in two hours late, puncturing the zen with his studded Louboutin slippers, off-kilter energy and wonky humour. Suddenly everything is a bit weird and overexcited; suddenly everyone is a bit gaspy and fizzy. Everyone, that is, except our Cheryl.
The pair met four years ago when, in her first musical expedition outside Girls Aloud, she featured on his solo single ‘Heartbreaker’. Everyone assumed that if they weren’t in love, then he, at least, was. ‘Of course that’s the natural thing people go to,’ she says. ‘Heaven forbid you should have any other kind of relationship with someone from the opposite sex.’ And then, faintly scandalised: ‘I was still married then, too.’ Ashley may be the faithless kind; his ex-wife is not. ‘I had always thought Will was quirky and out there and just ridiculously talented, and he is all those things. He’s amazing and we just clicked straight away.’
Will — who has produced for U2, Britney Spears, Michael Jackson, Rihanna, Justin Bieber and Nicki Minaj — took her seriously as a musical force. He persuaded her to go solo. Commercial and delightful though she clearly is, it is perhaps challenging to identify the trigger for his extreme enthusiasm and commitment. I don’t think it’s as simple as a bloody great crush. He’s too odd for that. So what inspired him, in an early studio session with Cheryl, to compare her lyrical delivery to that of Michael Jackson? ‘Her personality,’ he says baldly. ‘Charming, approachable, adorable, sweet, broken, fragile, strong.’ Fine, I can believe all of those things — but, for once, Will, answer the damn question. ‘So, what is music?’ he asks instead. ‘Music is channelling, collaboration, rinsing. Music is harmonious, it’s tolerant, it’s compromise. Music is about going through shit. And thinking about shit. Shit is the shit. Shit is the only thing that is f***ing nasty but that can grow grass. Shit is f***ing dope.’ His mother is also dope, the house we are shooting the pictures in is dope, my dress is dope, Prince Charles is dope. (more…)