Aston Merrygold on settling down, crazy fans and dream duets

Former JLS heartthrob Aston Merrygold is going it alone leaving his boy band days far behind. Now caught up with the cheeky singer, 27, to talk future plans 
and all things X Factor…

Hi Aston! What’s it like working without your JLS bandmates?
‘It’s obviously really different, but it’s good. Change is always good. 
I get to do everything I did with the band again and relive it.’
Do you still see them much?
‘People assume that because we don’t speak on Twitter we don’t talk any more. Literally, they were all at mine the other night!’
Ooh, boys’ night in?
‘No, it was a couples’ evening. We never used to sit and just take in what we did, but now we’re like: ‘Holy shit, we actually did loads of stuff and it lasted for ages.’’
Is there any rivalry now?
‘Not really, but we’re all pretty competitive so I’m sure if we all released music on the same day we’d all be like: ‘I want to win this.’ But we’d just turn it into a banter-fest!’
Do you still get crazy fans?
‘They know where I live – fans knock on my door all the time. They like to write on stones and leave them where my gate is.’
Not undies, then?
‘I do get that, but only on stage!’
You’ve been with your girlfriend Sarah Richards, 31, for a while now. Could we be hearing wedding bells?
‘I don’t like to jump the gun. We’re really good now so you don’t want to force anything. She’s a dancer so she tours as well – I only end up seeing her a few times a week.’
Does seeing Marvin and Rochelle Humes with their two-year-old Alaia-Mai make you feel broody?
‘Not broody – it makes me proud. She’s a gorgeous little girl – so bubbly.’
Would you like kids, too?
‘I dunno. It’s nice that I can be an uncle to these lovely kids, then be like: ‘Here you go, take them back!’’
What do you think of the new X Factor judging panel?
‘I’m pro! Rita Ora does everything – films, endorsements. She’s worldwide. And Nick Grimshaw’s on one of the biggest radio shows.’
Which star would you most 
love to work with?
‘Beyoncé would be incredible – she’s a powerhouse, so it would be interesting to go for it vocally

QUICK QUESTIONS…

What would you say is your most overused phrase?
‘I’ll go for the clean one! Probably ‘like’ – I say that all the time.’
What did you have for dinner last night?
‘Pizza. Don’t judge me, but it was actually a tuna pizza.’
Do you sing in the shower?
‘Yeah [laughs]. I make up a whole load of shit!’
What’s the worst date you’ve ever been on?
‘One where I forgot her name. I was cool, though. I was just 
like: ‘Yeah, babe.’’
Get Stupid is out NOW. Aston’s album Show Stopper will be out in October