Harry Styles has revealed in a new interview with Variety where he was named Hitmaker of the Year that being a part of the multi-million dollar-grossing boy band One Direction created some of his fondest career memories. He said that he learned so much as a member of the quintet — which included Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, and Louis Tomlinson — and shared that he believed everyone “loved” being part of the experience.
After selling 42 million albums worldwide, One Direction went on an extended hiatus in 2015 after five years together. The group was created by Simon Cowell from five solo performers who attempted to win the U.K. competition series The X Factor. While they didn’t win the competition, One Direction rocketed into superstardom with the hit song “What Makes You Beautiful.”
“I learned so much,” he said to Variety of his years in One Direction, where he learned the craft of songwriting alongside music makers such as Ryan Tedder and Teddy Geiger.
He revealed that while a member of the band, he used to try and write with as many different people as he could and continues to practice putting words to music.
Harry then noted that while being a part of the worldwide phenomenon might have had its downsides, there were many positives to the experience, including the chance to continue to evolve as a writer and performer as he grew older and more secure in his talents.
“When you look at the history of people coming out of bands and starting solo careers, they feel this need to apologize… ‘Don’t worry, everyone, that wasn’t me! Now I get to do what I really want to do.’ But we loved being in the band,” he said in the interview.
“I think there’s a wont to pit people against each other. And I think it’s never been about that for us. It’s about the next step in evolution. The fact that we’ve all achieved different things says a lot about how hard we worked in it,” Harry continued.
Since One Direction’s split, all of its members have released their own music, but none have been as successful as Harry, who has two albums under his belt — his eponymous first record in 2017 and 2019’s Fine Line. The latter has garnered him three Grammy Award nominations, including nods for Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Pop Solo Performance for “Watermelon Sugar,” and Best Music Video for “Adore You,” reported Entertainment Tonight. The Grammy Awards will air on January 31, 2021.