List of The X Factor finalists (UK series 10)

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The tenth UK series of The X Factor began on ITV on 31 August 2013 and ended on 15 December 2013. The live shows started on 12 October 2013. The twelve chosen finalists were Sam Callahan, Luke Friend, Nicholas McDonald, Abi Alton, Hannah Barrett, Tamera Foster, Sam Bailey, Lorna Simpson, Shelley Smith, Kingsland Road, Miss Dynamix and Rough Copy.[1]

Nicole Scherzinger mentored the girls (Alton, Barrett and Foster), Louis Walsh mentored the boys (Callahan, Friend and McDonald), Gary Barlow mentored the groups (Kingsland Road, Miss Dynamix and Rough Copy) and Sharon Osbourne mentored the over 25s (Bailey, Simpson and Smith).[2][3]

The three finalists were McDonald, Friend and Bailey. Friend finished in third place on 14 December 2013,[4] and then Bailey was announced as the winner the following night, with McDonald as the runner-up.[5] Osbourne, who returned to the show after quitting in 2008, emerged as the winning mentor for the first time.[5]

Boys[edit]

The 'Boys' category was mentored by Louis Walsh. Contestants in this category are male soloists aged between 16-24. The six candidates at judges' houses were: Paul Akister, Sam Callahan, Luke Friend, Ryan Mathie, Nicholas McDonald, and Giles Potter. Walsh chose:

Sam Callahan[edit]

For the Serangoon Road character, see Sam Callaghan.
For the American professional wrestler, see Sami Callihan.

Sam Callahan (born 10 May 1994)[6] is a former barman from Essex.[7] He attended Sylvia Young Theatre School[8][9] with The Wanted's Nathan Sykes.[10] Before he auditioned for The X Factor, Callahan was part of mixed-gender group managed by Geri Halliwell, before leaving in June 2011 to go solo. He released his debut single "Runaway Train" in December 2012.[8] Callahan supported The X Factor bands District3 and Union J at gigs in Scotland.[7][11] He is a fan of Celtic F.C.,[12] having previously lived in Glasgow to work with Scottish music producer John McLaughlin (911, Westlife, Busted),[12] who produced "Runaway Train".[8] Callahan has also worked as a model.[13]

Callahan sang "You're Beautiful" in his room audition and "You Need Me, I Don't Need You" at his arena audition. He performed "Iris" at bootcamp and "We Are Young" and "Teenage Dream" at judges' houses.[14]

During the live shows, Callahan angered The X Factor bosses by selling his own merchandise, which is against the rules of the show.[15] He was eliminated in week 6, after Scherzinger, Barlow and Osbourne voted him off over Luke Friend, with Walsh refusing to send home either of his acts.[16]

Luke Friend[edit]

Main article: Luke Friend

Luke Friend (born 30 April 1996)[17] is a student from Teignmouth in Devon[7][18] He was born in Leeds and grew up in the Chapel Allerton area of the city.[19][20][21] He also used to live in Shipley, Bradford,[22] where he attended Beckfoot School,[22] before moving to Devon when he was 13.[23] He then attended Coombeshead Academy.[23] In July 2013, Friend won TeenStar 2013.[24]

Friend's room audition, in which he sang "Stand by Me", was the first audition of the series to be broadcast.[25] Walsh commented "You have your own style, your own finish, love your voice. You're different."[26] Friend's arena audition saw him sing "Too Much Love Will Kill You". He performed "Alone" at bootcamp, and then "Cannonball" and "Somewhere Only We Know" at judges' houses.[26]

In week 6, Friend was in the bottom two with Sam Callahan, but was saved after Walsh refused to vote and then Scherzinger, Barlow and Osbourne all voted to send Callahan home.[16] In week 8, he was again in the bottom two. Walsh and Osbourne backed him, and Scherzinger and Barlow chose to send him home, resulting in deadlock. Friend was saved by the public vote and progressed through to the semi-final. In the semi-final he was in the bottom two again, this time with Rough Copy. Walsh backed Friend as his own act, whilst Barlow did the same with Rough Copy. Scherzinger chose to send Rough Copy into the final, but Osbourne could not decide and so chose to send it to deadlock again. Friend was revealed to have received more votes and was sent through to the final.[27] In the final on 14 December, Friend performed a duet with Ellie Goulding and later finished in third place.[4]

On 19 January 2014, Friend won 'Rising Star of 2014' in the Best of 2013 awards. He signed a deal with RCA Records and on October 15 2014, a lyric video for his debut single "Take On The World" was posted on his official YouTube page.

Nicholas McDonald[edit]

Main article: Nicholas McDonald

Nicholas McDonald (born 23 November 1996)[28] is a student from Wishaw in North Lanarkshire.[29] He lives with his parents Eileen and Derrick, and his older brother, younger brother and younger sister.[29] Nicholas suffers from the rare heart condition Long QT syndrome, and almost died when he was eight.[30] He attended St Aidan's High School in Wishaw, but missed Sixth Year due to The X Factor.[31]

In his room audition, McDonald sang "You Raise Me Up". Barlow said "I think in a year's time, you could be a finalist, so for that reason I'm going to say no." The other three judges, however, all said "yes" and McDonald went through to the arena,[32] where he sang "A Thousand Years".[33] At bootcamp, he was the final contestant in the boys category to perform. After singing "I Won't Give Up", Walsh said, "That was my favourite audition of the entire night.", and McDonald took the seat of Alejandro Fernandez-Holt.[34] At judges' houses he sang "If You're Not the One" and "Someone like You".[35]

On 8 December, along with Sam Bailey and Luke Friend, he made it to the final,[27] becoming the Scottish contestant to achieve this feat since Leon Jackson in 2007.[36] On 14 December, he duetted with former Westlife singer Shane Filan and was later announced as one of the final two, advancing along with Bailey.[4] With Sam Callahan having been eliminated in week 6, Friend's elimination in the first half of the final meant that McDonald became the last boy left in the competition.[4] After singing "Superman (It's Not Easy)" by Five for Fighting as his winner's song, he finished as runner-up to Bailey.[5] When the weekly voting statistics were revealed after the final, they showed that McDonald and Bailey had been the two most popular contestants every week; McDonald won three weeks and Bailey won the other seven.[37]

After the show, McDonald returned to school to say goodbye as he decided to concentrate on his singing career.[38] He has signed with RCA Records and is set to release his debut album on 30 March 2014.[39]

Girls[edit]

The 'Girls' category was mentored by Nicole Scherzinger. Contestants in this category were female soloists aged between 16-24. The six candidates at judges' houses were: Abi Alton, Hannah Barrett, Relley C, Tamera Foster, Melanie McCabe, and Jade Richards. Scherzinger chose:

Abi Alton[edit]

Abi Alton (born 26 August 1994)[40] is a worker in Morrisons from Guisborough in Teesside.[7] She studied at Laurence Jackson School[41] and then at Prior Pursglove College in her hometown where she studied English language, geography, photography and music.[42] She has been playing piano since she was eight and guitar since she was 15 and writes her own songs.[43]

Alton sang "Travelin' Soldier" in her room audition and performed an original composition called "Jigsaw" at the arena. She sang "I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)" at bootcamp and "Only You" and "Anything Could Happen" at judges' houses.[44]

On 20 October 2013, Alton suffered a back injury which led to her being taken to hospital, but was later discharged without permanent damage.[45] She was eliminated in week 5 after being voted into the bottom two with Hannah Barrett. Barlow and Osbourne voted to eliminate her, with Scherzinger refusing to vote, seeing as both girls were in her category.[46]

Hannah Barrett[edit]

Hannah Barrett (born 30 April 1996) is an 18-year-old student from South Norwood.[47] She was introduced to music by her father, who died when she was nine.[7] Her mother told her to leave their house after an argument when she was 10, and she moved into a social services' shelter.[48]

Barrett sang "Read All About It, Pt. III" in her room audition and "One Night Only" at her arena audition. She performed "I'd Rather Go Blind" at bootcamp and "A Change Is Gonna Come" and "Fighter" at judges' houses.[49]

In week 3, Barrett was in the bottom two with Miss Dynamix and was saved after only Barlow opted to send her home.[50] In week 5, she was in the bottom two again, this time with Abi Alton. Scherzinger refused to vote as both acts were in her category, so it was left to a majority vote. Barlow and Osbourne both chose to send Alton home, and Barrett was saved (Walsh said he would have sent Alton home as well).[46] She was again in the bottom two for the third time in week 7 with Rough Copy and was sent home by the judges with only Scherzinger choosing to save her, therefore narrowly missing out for a place in the quarter-final and finishing in sixth place.[51]

Tamera Foster[edit]

Tamera Foster (born January 1997) is a student from Gravesend in Kent.[7] She originally auditioned as part of duo Silver Rock with a woman called Jerrie Bafundila, better known as Jerrie Dila,[52] whom she met just days before their audition, but the judges split them up into solo artists after rejecting them as a duo.[53] At the arena, Bafundila failed to reach bootcamp,[54] and, after forgetting one line whilst singing "I Have Nothing" and ran off the stage to ask what it was, Foster nearly did as well. However, she sang again and got through.[55] At bootcamp she sang "Stay" and at judges' houses she sang "Fallin'" and "No More Drama" (in front of original artist Mary J. Blige, who was Scherzinger's assistant).[55]

There were calls for Foster to be kicked off the show after it emerged that she had previously smoked marjuana,[56] and had beaten up a 15-year-old girl who refused to kiss Foster's shoes,[57] both in December 2012. Foster accepted a police caution for the latter and publically apologised, calling it "a really stupid move".[57] She said that she has since put these events behind her, saying, "I'm not an angry person anymore and the people who know me from before will know how much I've changed."[58] Foster was also criticised for accepting endorsement deals from the show without asking The X Factor bosses.[59]

In week 4, Foster was in the bottom two with Kingsland Road, but was saved by Walsh, Osbourne and Scherzinger.[60] Following the eliminations of Abi Alton in week 5 and Hannah Barrett in week 7, Foster became the last girl left in the competition. She was again in the bottom two in week 8 with Luke Friend and was eliminated by the public vote, losing out for a place in the semi-final, finishing in fifth place and becoming the last of Scherzinger's acts to leave the competition.[61]

On 20 January 2014, it was reported that Foster had signed a record deal with Sony Music.[62] On 15 March, she confirmed that she had been signed to Simon Cowell's record label Syco Music.[63]

Over 25s[edit]

The 'Over 25s' category was mentored by Sharon Osbourne. Contestants in this category are soloists aged 25 and over. The six candidates at judges' houses were: Sam Bailey, Zoe Devlin, Andrea Magee, Lorna Simpson, Shelley Smith, and Joseph Whelan. Osbourne chose:

Sam Bailey[edit]

Main article: Sam Bailey

Sam Bailey (born 15 October 1977) is a former prison officer from Leicester. She lives with her husband Craig Pearson[64] and their two children.[7][65] A report by The Sun claimed that Bailey had "misled the public" by claiming to have had no previous singing experience, when in fact she had been performing on cruise ships, in clubs and at music festivals for several years. Bailey defended herself in an interview with the Leicester Mercury, stating: "I have been totally honest that I have sang for 20 years but never made it. What's the problem with that?"[66]

Bailey sang "Listen" in her room audition and "Who's Loving You" in the arena. She again sang "Who's Loving You" with Shelley Smith and Katie Markham at the first stage of bootcamp and "Clown" at the second stage. She performed "I Have Nothing" and "Without You" at judges' houses.[67]

By week 3, Bailey was the last over 25 left in the competition, following the eliminations of Lorna Simpson in week 1 and Smith in week 2. On 8 December, she made it to the final—making her the first female over 25s contestant ever to achieve this feat—along with Nicholas McDonald and Luke Friend.[27] On 14 December, she duetted with X Factor judge Scherzinger and progressesed to the second stage of the final.[4] The following night, she sang "Skyscraper" by Demi Lovato and was later announced as the winner, having received 53.4% of the overall vote.[5] She was the second over 25 to win The X Factor and the first since Steve Brookstein in 2004.[5] When the weekly voting statistics were revealed after the final, they showed that Bailey and McDonald had been the two most popular contestants every week; McDonald won three weeks with Bailey second and Bailey won the other seven with McDonald second.[37]

After winning, "Skyscraper" was released as Bailey's debut single.[68] On 22 December 2013, after selling 149,000 copies in its first week, the song debuted atop the UK Singles Chart and became the Christmas number one,[69] making Bailey the first X Factor winner to achieve the Christmas number one spot since Matt Cardle in 2010.[70] Bailey's debut album The Power of Love was released on 24 March 2014 and debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart.[71] This marked the first time in five years that any X Factor winner had had a number-one album.[71]

Lorna Simpson[edit]

Lorna Simpson is a 26-year-old university student from South Norwood, London.[7][65] She was brought up by her parents Charmaine and Peter in Croydon.[72] In 2010, Simpson took part in a talent show in Jamaica called Tasty Talent and won a prize of £8,000.[73] She appeared naked in the online gangster film Hood Loyalty.[74] She also used to be married to Jamaican convicted cocaine dealer, Errol Gordon.[72]

In her room audition, Simpson sang "I Have Nothing" and Barlow told her afterwards, "It feels like you've been singing for 50 years".[75] After performing "A Moment Like This" at her arena audition, Osbourne said "I do feel this is your time."[75] At bootcamp she sang "I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)" and Barlow said, "That was the surprise performance of the night for me, that was sensational."[76] With Osbourne having already chosen her top six, Simpson took the place of Sabrina Ramikie.[76] At judges' houses she sang "If I Were a Boy" and "One Moment in Time".[75]

Simpson sang "So Emotional" in the first live show and was eliminated by majority vote the following night after going up against fellow over 25s contestant Shelley Smith. Scherzinger and Walsh voted to eliminate Simpson, while Barlow voted to eliminate Smith and Osbourne abstained, so Simpson was eliminated.[77]

Shelley Smith[edit]

Shelley Smith (née Lewis;[78] born 19 October 1978)[79] is a van driver from Farringdon, Devon. She has been a van driver for 15 years. She has a seven-year old daughter called Madeline.[80] Smith split from her fiancé in 2012, and then reformed her image by losing weight, changing her hairstyle and ditching her glasses.[7] She previously made it to bootcamp in 2008 and 2012.[7][65]

Smith performed "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" in her room audition and "Feeling Good" for her arena audition. She sang "Who's Loving You" with Shelley Smith and Katie Markham at the first stage of bootcamp and "Respect" at the second stage. At judges' houses she sang "Girl on Fire" and "Alone".[80]

Smith lost the first flash vote of the series and ended up in the bottom two, but was saved by the judges after her mentor Osbourne couldn't decide between two of her acts.[77] She was eliminated the following week, however, after landing in the sing-off with Kingsland Road and only Osbourne voting to save her.[81]

Groups[edit]

The 'Groups' category was mentored by Gary Barlow. Contestants in this category are either duos or vocal harmony groups, all aged 16 and over. The six candidates at judges' houses were: Brick City, Code 4, Kingsland Road, Miss Dynamix, Rough Copy, and Xyra. Barlow chose:

Kingsland Road[edit]

Kingsland Road (originally Kingsland) are a five-piece boy band from East London, made up of Josh Zaré[82] from Maidstone,[83] Joe "Connor" Conaboy from Rugby,[84] Jon James "JJ" Thompson from Coventry (known by his surname),[84][85] Matt Cahill[86] and Jay Scott (originally from Wolverhampton).[7][87] Zaré and Conaboy knew each other from college, and invited Scott, Thompson and Cahill to form a band after seeing them on YouTube.[88] They named themselves "Kingsland" as they all hailed from the street Kingsland Road.

In their room audition they sang "Don't You Worry Child", then "Treasure" at the arena. They performed "For Once in My Life" at bootcamp and at judges' houses they sang "Dance with Me Tonight" (in front of original artist Olly Murs) and "A Thousand Years".[89]

On 1 October 2013, a week before the live shows, it was announced that Kingsland had been forced to change their name as there was a band in Canada also called Kingsland,[89] so they became Kingsland Road.[89][90] Kingsland Road lost the flash vote in week 2 and were in the bottom two, but were saved by the judges.[81] They were in the bottom two again in week 4, where they were up against Tamera Foster. This time they were voted out when Scherzinger, Osbourne and Walsh all voted to save Foster.[60]

Kingsland Road are funding their debut album through PledgeMusic.

Miss Dynamix[edit]

Miss Dynamix were a three-piece girl group consisting of full-time mother Shereece[91] "SeSe" Foster from Upper Norwood in London,[92] student Riélle Carrington from Manchester[92] and beauty consultant Jeanette Akua from South Africa.[7][92] SeSe has been with her boyfriend Chavez for nine years and is mother to four-year old Nymiah.[93] Rielle has 18 brothers and sisters.[94] Her father was Vernon Carrington, also known as Prophet Gadman, who founded the Twelve Tribes of Israel branch of the Rastafari movement in 1968.[94]

Akua and Carrington originally auditioned as soloists, while Foster auditioned as part of the three-piece group Dynamix along with two men called Kyle and Luke. They sang "Let's Get It Started", but the judges said that there were better groups in the competition. Barlow asked Foster if she would continue as a soloist, but she refused. Dynamix were put through to bootcamp, but they failed to make it past the first challenge. Akua and Carrington also failed to make it past the first bootcamp challenge, but before the second challenge, Barlow decided to put them and Foster together to form a new girl group.[95] He said that he believed they could be "the next Destiny's Child".[95] It was initially reported that the group would be called "Stop, Look, Listen",[95] but it was later revealed that their name would be Miss Dynamix, based on the name of Foster's original group. Their first performance together was during the second bootcamp challenge, where they sang "We Found Love". With all six of Barlow's seats already taken, they took the place of Tenors of Rock.[92] At judges' houses, they sang "Pure Shores" and "I Knew You Were Trouble".[96]

On 7 October 2013, Foster announced that she was five months pregnant, and that the baby will be due in January 2014. The closeness of the due date to The X Factor live shows, especially the semi-final and final, worried The X Factor bosses, but they allowed Foster to continue in the competition and a spokesman confirmed that they will "ensure medical staff will be on-site at the ITV London studios. She's being well looked after and her rehearsals are being scheduled carefully to ensure she has plenty of time to rest".[91] On the day of the second live show, Foster was taken ill and was unable to perform,[97] though she has since insisted that it was due to a panic attack and had nothing to do with her being pregnant.[98] Akua and Carrington were reluctant to perform without her as they did not have enough time to learn Foster's parts of the song, and Miss Dynamix received a bye through to week 3 without facing the public vote.[97] They lost the flash vote in week 3 and were sent home after losing the sing-off to Hannah Barrett, with Walsh, Osbourne and Scherzinger opting to send them home.[50] Afterwards, Syco record label boss Simon Cowell, who signs the winner of the show every year, tweeted: "I would have kept miss dynamix. I don't get that decision."[99]

On 17 January 2014, Akua confirmed via the group's official Twitter page that they had disbanded.[100][101][102][103][104] On 3 February, it was announced that Carrington has signed a solo deal with Refelxtion Records.[105]

Rough Copy[edit]

Main article: Rough Copy

Rough Copy are a three-member group from Croydon in London, consisting of carpenter[106] Kazeem "Kaz" Ajobe, who put the group together,[107] support worker[106] Sterling Ramsey and electrical engineer[106] Joseph "Joey" James.[7] They originally auditioned in 2012 and got to Walsh's judges' house in Las Vegas, but had to back out as Nigerian-born Ajobe was unable to obtain a visa in time, which would have made it almost impossible for him to re-enter the UK.[106][108]

Rough Copy re-auditioned for this series and sang "Do It Like a Dude" in their room audition and "Little Things" in the arena. After getting to bootcamp, it became apparent that Ajobe, yet again, was unable to obtain a visa in time for judges' houses, so Ramsey and James decided to continue on without him.[109] They performed "Stop Crying Your Heart Out" at bootcamp[109] and "Boyfriend" and "I Can't Make You Love Me" at judges' houses.[110] After putting them through, Barlow said he would do whatever he could to get Ajobe back into the band, and they reunited as a trio for the live shows.[111]

Following the eliminations of Miss Dynamix in week 3 and Kingsland Road in week 4, Rough Copy were the last group left in the competition. In week 7, they were in the bottom two with Hannah Barrett, but were saved when only Scherzinger voted to send them home.[51] Rough Copy were sent home in the semi-final after ending up in the sing-off with Luke Friend, just missing out on a place in the final.[27]

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