List of The X Factor finalists (UK series 1)

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The first series of The X Factor was broadcast on ITV from 4 September to 11 December 2004. It was won by Steve Brookstein, who went on to have some chart success, with runners-up G4 achieving two platinum albums before splitting up in 2007.[1][2] Simon Cowell was the winning mentor.

Although Brookstein won the series, Cowell later admitted that G4 – mentored by Louis Walsh – were the real winners of the show.[3] Brookstein and Cowell reportedly fell out over Cowell's insistence that he record covers versions, rather than self-penned material, leading to him being dropped from Sony BMG, and his name being little-mentioned in subsequent series of the show.[4]


Sharon Osbourne was in charge of the 16–24s.

Tabby Callaghan[edit]

Trevor John "Tabby" O'Callaghan (born 22 April 1981 in Sligo, Ireland) is an Irish rock singer who had previously sung with future Westlife members Kian Egan and Mark Feehily. He was also with Petronella before joining DZ5, who auditioned for The X Factor, unaware that the show's willingness to accept bands only applied to vocal groups.[5] The judges advised Callaghan to audition as a solo singer, and he was selected by Sharon Osbourne to be one of her acts at the live finals, finishing in third place overall.[6]

Callaghan later revealed that he had been advised by the show's producers to drop the 'O' in his surname to make it sound more commercial and less Irish.[7][8] In 2006 he supported Rod Stewart on tour,[9] toured with new band The Tsars,[10] and released the single "Take A Swing".[11]

Cassie Compton[edit]

Cassie Compton was the youngest contestant on Series One of The X Factor. On the night she was eliminated, the seventeen-year-old's rendition of "All By Myself" failed to impress either the judges, particularly Cowell, who believed she was more of a West End singer.[12]

Compton has indeed performed in West End musicals since, including Les Miserables, Dirty Dancing, and Wicked.[13][14]

Roberta Howett[edit]

Roberta Howett is a former credit controller from Dublin who was constantly praised by the judges for relying on her talent instead of her looks.[15] Despite an impressive performance of The Carpenters "Superstar", she was eliminated in the first week of the competition when Cowell used his casting vote against her, claiming that she "should be working in a hotel".[16]

On 26 February 2010, her debut single "Beautiful Lies" was released in Ireland.[17] On 4 March 2010, it debuted at number 23 in the Irish Singles Chart.[citation needed]


Simon Cowell was in charge of the 25-and-overs.

Steve Brookstein[edit]

Stephen Desmond "Steve" Brookstein (born 10 November 1968, London) is a singer who had previously competed in ITV's The Big Big Talent Show whilst performing in pubs and clubs across the country.[18] In 2004 he auditioned for the first series of The X Factor, but failed to impress two of the judges – Osbourne and Walsh – who both thought he lacked the motivation and confidence to succeed, but Cowell asked Brookstein to return the following day. At his second audition, Brookstein managed to impress everyone and soon reached the live shows as one of three contestants in Cowell's category. Despite a controversial outburst against him from Osbourne, who now despised him and branded him "crap" and a "fake", he beat operatic boyband G4 to win the series during the final.[19]

Although Brookstein enjoyed fleeting success with both his debut album and single both reaching number one – Heart and Soul and "Against All Odds" respectively – he was dropped by Cowell's management after the latter was accused of refusing Brookstein creative freedom.[20]

Verity Keays[edit]

Verity Keays is a music teacher from Grimsby, Lincolnshire. She had previously been part of a double act with her ex-husband Simon Keays, touring America. She had been noticed by several music executives including Suzanne de Passe, and was offered record deals in the past but was forced to turn them down by her jealous ex-husband, and regretted letting the opportunity pass her by.[21][22] During her audition in which she sang "When I Fall in Love", Cowell compared her to Olivia Newton-John,[23] but she was eliminated after Osbourne's casting vote saved 2 to Go.[24]

Keays continues to teach music at schools in Grimsby whilst working as a vocal coach. She is a distant relative of Ella Henderson, who competed in series nine of The X Factor.[25]

Rowetta Satchell[edit]

Rowetta Satchell impressed the judges with her rendition of "Lady Marmalade", but Cowell described her as "Amazing but, barking bloody mad". Her soulful, powerful voice proved to be a hit with audiences, although she was criticised for competing as an established singer against amateurs. The producers defended her, stating that the show was open to anybody. Her performances on the show earned her rave reviews[citation needed] and she made the final 4 and was the last woman in the competition, never having to compete in a sing-off.


Louis Walsh was in charge of the groups.

2 to Go[edit]

2 to Go are a duo consisting of best friends Peter Jones and Emma Paine. Since their elimination in week 3, they have been performing gigs in working men's clubs.[14]


G4 consisted of students Jonathan Ansell, Matthew Stiff, Mike Christie, and Ben Thapa who were all students of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, from which the name of their group, standing for "Guildhall 4", derives. They performed as buskers during their free time to earn money for themselves, and stood out from the rest of the competition due to their operatic delivery of modern pop songs.[26][27] They reached the final of the competition where they finished as runners-up to Brookstein, but went on to outsell Brookstein following the release of their debut album G4, and Cowell later admitted that G4 and Walsh were the real winners of the competition.[28]

In 2007, after three albums and several national tours, G4 announced that they would be splitting due to disagreements within the band,[1] but seven years later stated that they would be reuniting - bar Matthew - to embark on a nationwide tour to commemorate their 10-year anniversary.[29]

Voices with Soul[edit]

Voices with Soul are a trio consisting of Hilda Campbell, her mother Grace and her aunt Corene. In week 1, they sang "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" and were later in the bottom two with Roberta Howett, but were saved when Cowell opted to save them over Howett. In week 2 they sang "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" and were safe for the first and only time.

In week 3 they sang "Bridge over Troubled Water" and were in the bottom two again, this time with fellow group 2 to Go. Walsh was torn between two of his own acts but decided to send 2 to Go home. In week 4, Voices with Soul sang "Lady Marmalade", during which they kissed Cowell, and were in the bottom two for the third time. Walsh finally sent them home instead of eventual runners-up G4.

After their elimination, they supported G4 on tour.[14] Corene was one of the single women on Take Me Out in 2011.[30]

All three members are often seen in the audience on Big Brother's Bit on the Side.

In 2014, Grace & Corene appeared as contestants on the 11th series of Coach Trip


  1. ^ a b "Classical band G4 announce split". BBC News. 6 April 2007. 
  2. ^ "G4 splitting over 'boiling frustrations'". Evening Standard. 
  3. ^ "The X Factor – News – Cowell: G4 'won' first 'X Factor'". Digital Spy. 15 August 2005. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Cowell Slates Boyband". 
  6. ^ "Tabby Callaghan, 23". Daily Mail. DMG Media. 29 October 2004. 
  7. ^ "SHOWBLITZ: O yes! Tabby's a changed man". 14 August 2005. 
  8. ^ "Mother Knows Best". 
  9. ^ "Tabby'S Factor Fades". 
  10. ^ "Tabby Using Up His Lives". 2 July 2006. 
  11. ^ "Where are they now". 30 September 2006. 
  12. ^ "Cassie gets boot from TV X Factor". 
  13. ^ "INTERVIEW: 10 Minutes with Cassie Compton". 14 March 2012. 
  14. ^ a b c "Where are they now? What happened to the 57 X Factor finalists?". Daily Mirror. Trinity Mirror. 20 August 2009. Retrieved 6 October 2009. 
  15. ^ "Roberta: My tears over X Factor exit". 25 October 2004. 
  16. ^ "Roberta is knifed by Mr Nasty". 24 October 2004. 
  17. ^ "I now know How I'll reach the stars". 
  18. ^ "Bushell on the box: ITV'S RECYCLED TALENT". 12 December 2004. 
  19. ^ "STEVIE WONDER; FACTOR RESULT Pub crooner beats rivals G4 and claims pounds 10m album deal". 
  20. ^ "the Razz: THE XTRAS FACTOR; Exclusive Steve: Simon turned me into a sad TV wannabe". 
  21. ^ "'I will keep singing for as long as my voice will let me'". 5 March 2011. 
  22. ^ "I lived for 26 years under the thumb of a jealous husband; EXCLUSIVE: X-FACTOR'S VERITY TELLS ALL". 
  23. ^ "The man X-Factor Verity blames for crushing her chance of fame". 
  24. ^ "Wannabe Verity fails to show off the X-Factor". 1 November 2004. 
  25. ^ "Singing Teacher Verity Keays". 16 November 2012. 
  26. ^ "X Factor Exclusive: Mailfile: The Final 10". 
  27. ^ Wyse, Pascal (16 December 2005). "We're Jammin'". The Guardian. 
  28. ^ "X Factor Series 1", Sunday Express, 1 March 2007
  29. ^ G4 announce 10 year anniversary show
  30. ^ "Take Me Out". 13 February 2011. 

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