by Alicea Alford – Staff Writer
Since their hiatus, the members of One Direction have been finding success in their solo careers. Niall Horan, member of One Direction, is aware of the mass level of success One Direction had, and how as a solo act that height is unreachable. He said to Billboard, “Nothing I do will be as big as One Direction, but I have to try at least to get somewhere near it.”
Horan released his debut album, Flicker, on Oct. 20. The album debuted #1 on the iTunes charts, and has since rocketed to #1 throughout the U.S. Sonically, his album was influenced by the music that stuck out to him as a child with, “classic American-rock with that country/Americana feel”. He spoke about in his “About the Album” with Applemusic. Horan’s promotional singles for the album (This Town, Slow Hands, and Too Much to Ask) gave a good sense of his ideal sound for the rest of the album.
To promote Flicker, Horan is heading on the Flicker Sessions 2017-2018 World Tour. Being solo, Horan is reminiscing on his tours with One Direction, “With One Direction, the screaming didn’t stop. We’d all run around and there was always some explosion going off or prop coming on. Now, I just stand there thanking God for my guitar. When I put that down, I haven’t a clue what to do with my hands” Horan said to The Sunday Times Culture magazine.
Harry Styles, another member of One Direction, released his self-titled debut album on May 12. Harry Styles not only debuted at the top of the iTunes charts in multiple countries, but the Billboard top 200 albums chart as well. His first single from the album, Sign of the Times, topped the charts when it was released. Sign of the Times debuting no.1 made Styles the third member of One Direction to release a song and have it debut #1, along with This Town by Horan and Pillowtalk by Zayn Malik.
Styles’ world tour to promote his album has him currently on the European leg of his 2017-2018 tour. As of now, his success post-One Direction is the only one to span out of music and into movies. Styles was an actor in Christopher Nolan’s Dunkirk as Alex. In the World War II movie, Styles proves he didn’t get the part because of his star-power from One Direction.
Liam Payne, honey-voiced vocalist, has been busy in the studio. Payne has released Strip That Down, Get Low, and Bedroom Floor all with no hard information on the full album to be released. Strip That Down has got the most air-time of all his singles, reaching the top 10 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. Liam is spending time promoting his singles with BBCR1 Teen Awards and X-Factor live performances.
Louis Tomlinson is not only releasing music himself, but he’s taking on more responsibility behind the scenes by creating his own record label, Triple String, and managing a girl band, Did Alice Call. His release of Back to You landed him #40 on the
Billboard Hot 100. The single won him a People’s Choice Award for “Solo Pop Star Will Rule Summer of 2017”. He is the only member of One Direction to have his solo single hit no. 1 without a radio or label single campaign. Although he’s doing his own thing and loves it, he is still waiting for the band to get back together he said he would, “wait the two years, five years, whatever it be until One Direction reformed” (theguardian.com).
Although he left One Direction before they officially disbanded for hiatus, Malik released his solo album, Mind of Mine, in 2016. Now, he’s been doing more collaborations than he was when he first left the band. He’s had hits of I Don’t Wanna Live Forever with Taylor Swift and Dusk Till Dawn with Sia. He’s been busier with his movie soundtrack songs, while he’s working on his second album with what he said to US Weekly has more, “soulful R&B, club, and pop influences”.
Overall, through their solo careers and releasing their own music, their influence on One Direction is blatant sonically and lyrically. They all had their own piece that fit into the band. One Direction will always be a part of each of them, and Horan is always ready for the reunion, he said “If it comes tomorrow, I have my bag packed. If I have to wait till I’m 60, so be it. I’m serious. We’ll be like Eagles and never stop.”