Liam Payne – Singer

by Kristine Bigcas

Liam Payne is an English music artist and songwriter. He is one of the original members of One Direction before he started pursuing his solo career during their long hiatus. His voice can be heard in their famous hits, such as What Makes You Beautiful and History. As an individual artist, his debut single Strip that Down was released on May 19, 2017. His first solo album is still in the works and is expected to come out soon.

Prior to his solo endeavor, Liam has worked on remixes of One Direction’s You and I and Steal My Girl. He used the nickname “Big Payno” and “Payno.” He also did the same for Cheryl Cole’s I Don’t Care. In his personal life, Liam now fathers one child while in a relationship with Cheryl.

Early Life

Liam was born Liam James Payne on August 29, 1993, in Wolverhampton, England, UK. He was born prematurely, precisely three weeks before the due date that resulted to his sickliness as a child. Doctors have noticed that his kidneys were scarred and dysfunctional when he was younger. Tests were constantly performed on him until he was four years old. Growing up, he had 32 injections throughout the day to ease the pain.

Despite that, he still became active in school, especially in the athletics department. In fact, he joined Wolverhampton and Bilston Athletics Club under the cross country running division. However, he was only placed on the reserved list of players after failing to become a member of the English National team that played in the 2012 Olympic games. He also learned boxing when he was 12 after suffering from bullying in secondary school.

He studied in St. Peter’s Collegiate School before he made his decision of taking up Music Technology at the Wolverhampton College’s Paget Road campus. Before that, at the age of 12, he already performed for the  Wolverhampton Wanderers football match. He also played the role of Tony Manero in Saturday Night Fever when he became the member of Pink Productions Theatre Company.

Family

His family remains to be private to this day but are often seen with him in pictures. His mother Karen Payne was a nurse while his father, Geoff Payne, was a fitter. Liam is the youngest of three. His older siblings are all girls, namely Nicola and Ruth.

Son

Last March 22, 2017, Liam and her girlfriend, Cheryl, announced the birth of their son. His son’s full name is Bear Grey Payne and is fondly called “Cub” by Liam and Cheryl. When asked about the name, he explained that she let her decide over it reasoning “I wasn’t going to fight her about it, she’s the one who’s done all the work, isn’t she?”

Personal Life

Liam saved many people from different harmful situations, be it at a party or in a live fire. In August 2013, he saved his friend Andy Samuels after Andy accidentally caught himself on fire while trying to fill the patio heater with gas. Andy even recalls Liam trying to put out the fire using nothing but his bare hands. The accident happened in Liam’s East London apartment while they were celebrating his 20th birthday. In May of the same year, Liam also came to the rescue of a waitress at a bar in London that caused a square up to him and one of the Tottenham Hotspur players. Following that are his rescue efforts for Calvin Harris when he was knocked out during the party of Miley Cyrus. He is also a philanthropist who supports UNICEF among other non-profit organizations. He is the ambassador for Trestock and Sustainable Development Goals.

Relationship

Danielle Peazer

Liam first dated Danielle in October 2010. She is a British dancer born on June 10, 1988 (a few years older than Liam). He was only sixteen when they started dating while Danielle was already 22 then. Through his representatives, Liam confirmed that they indeed broke up for good. The split had to do with them struggling to make things work with Danielle’s dancing and modeling career, and of Liam’s then-tour with One Direction.

Sophia Smith

Months after his split with Danielle, Liam then started dating his childhood friend Sophia Smith in May of 2013. It had been once revealed that Sophia rejected Liam for at least twenty two times before but he, nonetheless, continued to pursue her. They dated for two years and even had engagement rumors before they broke up in October 2015. According to an insider of Hollywoodlife, “Sophia felt that their relationship was at a point where they either made a decision to get married and settle down, or they go on and do something else and experience more of the world.” Sophia felt like they were still both too young to think about marriage and settling down so she decided to call it off with Liam.

Cheryl

Following his relationship with Sophia is his relationship with Cheryl Cole. She was born Cheryl Ann Tweedy on June 30, 1983. She is 10 years older than Liam. They have been dating since December 2015. They both had their first child in March 2017. Cheryl’s pregnancy was kept on the down low and the only picture of their baby they have shared so far was during the announcement of their first born’s birth.

Music Career

Although he has performed a handful of times during his younger years, Liam’s career started in the UK version of The X-Factor. He first auditioned in 2008, singing Fly Me to the Moon but did not make it to the Bootcamp stage. With a changed mind, judge Simon Cowell asked him to sing again at the judge’s house where he was officially cut off from the competition. He was told to come back in two years and indeed, he auditioned again in 2010. This time, he sang Cry Me a River and got all four yeses from the judges and a standing ovation from Simon Cowell.

He didn’t excel much in the Boys category at the judge’s house. This led him to be put in a group with four other contestants: Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, and Louis Tomlinson. Their group was called One Direction. They won the 3rd place in The X-Factor, singing the song Forever Young in their final performance.

One Direction

After the competition ended, One Direction was signed by Syco, the music label of Simon Cowell, for a 2-million Pound contract. While recording their debut album, they released their book One Direction: Forever Young (Our Official X Factor Story) on February of 2011. They also joined other contestants in the X Factor Live Tour until its last leg in April 2011.  Their first single What Makes You Beautiful was released on September 2011 and received massive support from fans. It became the number one song in the UK Singles Chart and is the most pre-ordered single in the history of Sony Music Entertainment.

For their North American label, he and the rest of One Direction signed a contract with Columbia Records. They became the opening act of Big Time Rush before they started their own worldwide tour. The release of their debut album Up All Night finally happened in the late months of 2011 and globally in early 2012. It was positively reviewed by a lot of fans and has skyrocketed the group to the top position in the US Single Charts. That was the first time that a British band has topped the US Single Charts.

Liam continued performing for One Direction and released their second album Take Me Home in November 2012. It became the top 4 best-selling album of 2012 with their previous album bagging the third spot. Together with his group, he then performed in the Royal Variety Performance of 2012 singing Little Things in front of the Queen Elizabeth II. They also performed in the Madison Square Garden on December 03, 2012.

His success continued to grow as One Director got even more famous. In 24 hours, their lead single Best Song Ever for their 3rd album immediately had 10.9 million views in total. He also joined 1D for the “1D Day” on November 23, 2013. Their third album was globally released on November 23, 2013. December of the same year, they released the 3-D concert film This Is Us. However, in 2015, his band member, Zayn Malik departed their group in the midst of their promotional tour for Four, their fourth album. First to part ways with them was their tour manager on November 22, 2014, then Zayn himself on March 25, 2015.

Despite Zayne’s departure, Liam stayed in the band and released their fifth and final album before their hiatus Made in the A.M. Despite the hiatus, they still received the 2017 Brit Award for their song History that was personally received by Liam on behalf of Harry, Louis, and Niall.

Solo Project

During the hiatus of One Direction, Liam, like the rest of the other band members, has worked on his solo career. He became a remix producer under his nicknames “Big Payno” and “Payno.” He also created his publishing company, Hampton Music Limited. He is also one of the directors of One Mode Productions Limited. Furthermore, Liam also has collaborated with multiple artists including his musical influence, Pharell Williams.

He signed a recording contract with Capitol Records on July 22, 2016, and released his first solo artist single Strip That Down on May 19, 2017. He is also working on songs like Bedroom Floor and his collaborative work with Zedd Get Low. Although unreleased just yet, Liam teased fans describing his album to be “very eclectic. It’s more like my playlist album; my favorite playlist of songs that I have made over the past year. So, some slow jams, there’s a couple of dance songs on there, with some R&B stuff. So there’s a lot — it’s a lot of different stuff.”

 

Net Worth

Liam was recognized as the Sexiest Man of the Year in 2015 by Attitude, a gay lifestyle magazine. With all the success of One Direction plus his own ventures as a solo artist, Liam has a net worth of 54 million Pounds or above $70 million in US currency.