After 20 years in the music industry, New Zealand-bound Irish singing sensation Ronan Keating has some advice for our Grammy queen Lorde.
The X Factor judge, who arrives in the country on February 15 with his new girlfriend Storm Uechtritz to perform at the Mission Estate concert, was blown away by Lorde’s double win at the Grammys.
Ronan, who himself began his career at an early age joining Boyzone at the age of 16, says he loves how “refreshingly” frank New Zealanders are and hopes Lorde doesn’t let the industry change her.
“Lorde is exceptional, talk about one song going global! We all want a song like that in our career and she’s gone from strength to strength,” says Ronan.
“My advice to her is protect yourself, and make sure you’ve got good people around you and good managers and remember, family are very important.
“It’s important to believe in what you are doing, stick by it and stand up for what you believe in – and she seems to be doing that anyway.”
Ronan, who has recently begun filming his fifth season on The X Factor Australia says unlike Lorde, many of the young people he meets on the show are over confident. Many contestants, he says, are not prepared to work hard to make it to the top of the industry.
“The contestants have a lot of confidence and seem far more brash and blasé about the industry. The world is a much smaller place thanks to technology, but when I started with Boyzone I had my eyes wide open in awe of it all.
“When I began, it was my dream and music was all I wanted to do, so to get into a studio and to work on a song, it was just amazing. I loved the opportunity and held on to it with both hands.
“My manager in the early days said, ‘Be nice to everybody on the way up because you will need them on the way back down. You’ve got to be gracious and humble’,” he adds.
Ronan, who has visited New Zealand several times, is a big fan of Kiwi music including the work of the Finn brothers, Gin Wigmore and Brooke Fraser.
“There’s a couple of New Zealand artists I’ve got my eye on. Brooke Fraser is an incredible talent – I think she’s brilliant. Her album Flags is one Storm and I listen to quite a bit.