Radio Facts: Simon Cowell is a well-known name in the music industry, and not only because he acts as a judge on popular television shows like X Factor and Britain’s Got Talent. Cowell is also a music producer and has his own label, Syco, which usually signs talented artists discovered by means of the two shows. As such, Cowell believes he single handedly managed to save the industry from ruin, he says in a new interview with NME.
Things were looking pretty grim before he started with the two shows, Cowell says and the fact that he managed to get such high ratings on TV boosted interest in the music the contenders on the show made. One thing lead to another, and more and more people started going into music stores to buy music, which would not have happened otherwise, the star says.
“The music industry was in a huge decline. What I would argue in my defense is that shows like Britain’s Got Talent and The X Factor have actually got people more interested in music again and are sending more people into record stores. We haven’t seen this kind of uplift in years,” Cowell tells NME. In making this statement, he also comes to contradict other stars who claim that these two shows only bring out the worst in the industry, in that they artificially promote manufactured pop stars who have no staying power – this, despite the fact that some of those who appeared on the show have gone to sell millions of albums all over the world, like Leona Lewis and Susan Boyle.
Still, Cowell is not passionate about music, he goes on to say. As he was growing up, he learned to see music as “fun” and a “luxury,” which means he doesn’t take it too seriously. Granted, he believes in real talent and in the singers he is promoting, but that’s not to say that he can’t admit that what he considers extraordinary can be seen by another as nothing spectacular, common or even downright bad.
“I always equated music with having a good time. I wasn’t someone who if I split up with someone would just play morbid dark songs to make me feel worse. It used to make me happy. Yes [I am passionate about music]. Er, but like I say, in a way which I don’t take it too seriously because I think it’s enjoyment, it’s a luxury. I’ve always said there is no such thing as good or bad taste. It’s true!” Simon Cowell adds.