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Louis Tomlinson

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Louis Tomlinson
Louis Tomlinson November 2014.jpg
Tomlinson at the 2014 ARIA Awards
Born Louis Troy Austin
(1991-12-24) 24 December 1991 (age 26)
Doncaster, South Yorkshire, England
Nationality British
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • football player
  • actor
Partner(s) Eleanor Calder
Children 1
Musical career
Instruments Vocals
Years active 2010–present
Associated acts One Direction

Louis William Tomlinson (/ˈli ˈtɒmlɪnsən/;[1] born Louis Troy Austin; 24 December 1991)[2] is an English singer and songwriter. He is known as a member of the boy band One Direction. Tomlinson began his career as an actor, appearing in ITV drama film If I Had You and the BBC drama Waterloo Road. In 2010, he became a member of One Direction after being eliminated as a solo artist on the British music competition series The X Factor. One Direction has since released five albums, performed four worldwide tours, and won several awards. Tomlinson is one of the main songwriters of the group's repertoire.[3]

"Just Hold On" was released as Tomlinson's debut single as a solo artist in December 2016, it peaked at number two on the UK Singles Chart and was certified gold in both the UK and US. In 2017, Tomlinson released "Back to You" and "Miss You"; the singles will be included in his debut studio album, which will be released in 2018 by Epic Records.[4]

In 2013, Tomlinson was signed as a footballer by Doncaster Rovers of the Football League Championship on a non-contract basis. The same year he also formed his own record label, Triple Strings, as an imprint of One Direction's label Syco.[5] He appeared on Debrett's 2017 list of the most influential people in the UK.[5]

Early life

Tomlinson was born in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, to Johannah Poulston and Troy Austin,[6][7] who split up when he was young. He later took on his then stepfather Mark Tomlinson's name.[8] His mother died, after a short battle with leukaemia, in December 2016.[9]

Tomlinson was a sixth form student at Hall Cross School and is a former pupil of the Hayfield School.[10] He failed his first year of A levels at the Hayfield School and ended up going back to Hall Cross and starting A levels again.[10] He had a number of jobs, including at a Vue cinema and at Doncaster Rovers football stadium as a waiter in the hospitality suites.[10][11] At Hall Cross, Tomlinson appeared in several musical productions.[12][13] He admitted to not applying himself academically in school, but he thoroughly enjoyed being with his friends and being involved with musical productions.[14] Taking the lead role of Danny Zuko in the Hall Cross musical production of Grease motivated him to audition for The X Factor.[12][15]


Acting and The X Factor

Tomlinson, along with two of his siblings, had extra roles in Fat Friends.[10] After Fat Friends, he attended an acting school in Barnsley.[10] He had small parts in an ITV drama film If I Had You and BBC's Waterloo Road.[10] As a student at Hall Cross, Tomlinson appeared in several musical productions.[12][13] Being involved with musical productions at Hall Cross gave him a growing sense of ambition and determination.[16] Taking the lead role of Danny Zuko in the Hall Cross musical production of Grease motivated him to audition for The X Factor.[12][15] Tomlinson later said in a 2017 interview[17] that another motivation for him auditioning for the X-Factor was because the band he was in before One Direction, when he was just 14, kicked him out after a new boy came to the school and decided to replace him as their vocalist. "Then I was like, 'I'm going to go on The X Factor now and fuck you all!'" he said. Tomlinson auditioned for The X-Factor in 2009 where he failed to progress past the producer's audition, but this minor defeat only gave him the determination to return the following year.[18]

Tomlinson (right) with One Direction bandmates Harry Styles (left) and Liam Payne (center) in the X Factor Live Tour in Glasgow.

In 2010, Tomlinson auditioned for the seventh series of the singing competition The X Factor.[19] He failed to progress to the "Boys" category at judges' houses but, after a suggestion from Nicole Scherzinger, a guest judge,[19] during the bootcamp stage of the competition[20] at Wembley Arena, London in July 2010, he was put together with Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne and Harry Styles to form a five-piece boy band, thus qualifying for the "Groups" category. Subsequently, the group got together for two weeks to get to know each other and to practise.[21][22] Styles came up with the name One Direction.[22] For their qualifying song at judges' houses and their first song as a group One Direction sang an acoustic version of "Torn" by Natalie Imbruglia.[23] Simon Cowell later commented that the performance convinced him that the group "were confident, fun, like a gang of friends and kind of fearless as well."[24] Within the first four weeks of the live shows, they were Cowell's last act in the competition.[25] The group quickly gained popularity in the UK.[24]

One Direction finished in third place and immediately after the final their song "Forever Young", which would have been released if they had won The X Factor, was leaked onto the internet.[26] Shortly afterwards it was confirmed that One Direction had been signed by Cowell to a reported £2 million Syco Records record contract.[27]

One Direction

Propelled to international success by the power of social media, One Direction's first two albums, Up All Night and Take Me Home, released in 2011 and 2012 respectively, broke several records, topped the charts of most major markets, and generated hit singles, including "What Makes You Beautiful" and "Live While We're Young".

Often described as forming part of a new "British Invasion" in the United States, the group have sold over 35 million records worldwide, according to the band's management company, Modest! Management.[28] Their achievements include two BRIT Awards, two American Music Awards, and three MTV Video Music Awards. According to Nick Gatfield, the chairman and chief executive of Sony Music Entertainment UK, One Direction represented a $50 million business empire by June 2012. They were proclaimed 2012's "Top New Artist" by Billboard.[29] Tomlinson, along with his other band members, appeared in an episode of iCarly in spring 2012.

Tomlinson cites Robbie Williams as his biggest influence and idol.[30] In an interview with Now magazine, he said: "I've always loved Robbie. He's just so cheeky, he can get away with anything. His performances are unbelievable."[30] He also admires fellow British recording artist Ed Sheeran, describing him as "phenomenal".[31]

Solo projects and hiatus

Tomlinson appeared on The X Factor in 2015, serving as a guest judge alongside Simon Cowell.[32] Tomlinson has indicated he would be interested in becoming a permanent X Factor judge during the hiatus if he is asked.[33]

In 2015, Tomlinson created his own record label, Triple Strings Ltd, as an imprint of his current label Syco.[34] It was reported he was working with Simon Cowell to create a girl band and held auditions in 2015.[35]

One Direction has a planned hiatus starting in March 2016 to pursue individual projects.[36] During the hiatus, Tomlinson has plans to continue songwriting with fellow band member Liam Payne.[33] He is also busy mentoring and managing his currently nameless girl group.[37]

Tomlinson and American DJ Steve Aoki released their collaborative single "Just Hold On" on 10 December 2016.[38] Tomlinson and Aoki performed the song live for the first time on The X Factor UK season finale on the day of its release. Tomlinson dedicated the song and performance to his late mother.[39] In July 2017, Tomlinson released the single "Back to You" featuring Bebe Rexha and Digital Farm Animals, preceding his debut studio album via his own record label, Triple String.[40] Later, it was announced that Tomlinson had signed a record deal with Epic Records.[41] In an interview with BBC Music, Tomlinson said lyrically his debut album is inspired by Arctic Monkeys and Oasis. He declared:

My whole mission with this album is to not write these Hollywood-esque songs that talk about some unfathomable crazy love story. I'm so bored of that... Because I'm from up north, I grew up loving the likes of the Arctic Monkeys and Oasis. And the way they tell stories is such an effortless thing. It's real, it's honest and it's to the point, you know? Now, any of the Arctic Monkeys would be devastated to hear me talking like this, but there is a way of incorporating that conversational honesty into pop.[42]


Tomlinson with Phil Neville at Niall Horan Charity Football Challenge, 2014.
Tomlinson with Mark Wright at Niall Horan Charity Football Challenge, 2014.

Tomlinson, whose previous football experience had been to play and run his own pub team called Three Horseshoes, had agreed to play in a charity game at the Keepmoat Stadium in his home town of Doncaster to raise money for the Bluebell Wood Charity and was offered a deal by professional football club Doncaster Rovers to join the club on non-contract terms after impressing in the game.[43] The deal was brokered for Tomlinson to be a development player and to participate in reserve games, working around his music commitments with One Direction. He was given the squad number 28 for the 2013–14 season. Tomlinson said of the move: "It's unbelievable really. I have been a massive football fan for a long time and growing up in Doncaster, I've been to plenty of games at the Keepmoat. To be part of the club is incredible." Rovers manager Paul Dickov joked, "He's missed pre-season training and he's having a holiday in America, so we'd better get him over here pretty soon.".[44]

On 3 September 2013, it was announced that Tomlinson would make his debut for Doncaster's Reserve team in their Central League fixture against the Scunthorpe United reserve team on 18 September. Doncaster announced that despite the fixture being a reserve game they would be setting up a special ticket line for the match.[45] On 8 September, Tomlinson played for Celtic in another charity match for Stiliyan Petrov. During the game Tomlinson was injured following a tackle by Aston Villa and England striker Gabriel Agbonlahor and was substituted straight away. The tackle consequently caused Agbonlahor to receive abuse from One Direction fans on his Twitter account, and brought an apology from the player.[46] As a result of injuries sustained in the match, Tomlinson was then forced to pull out of the Scunthorpe match, relegating himself to the bench, but promising that the match would be rescheduled.[47]

His rescheduled debut for Doncaster's reserve side in the Central League came as a 65th-minute substitute in a 0–0 game against Rotherham United on 26 February 2014, a charity match in aid of Bluebell Wood Children's Hospice attended by a crowd in excess of 4,000.[48] Tomlinson later participated in bandmate Niall Horan's Charity Football Challenge on 26 May 2014, at the King Power Stadium.[49]

On 19 June 2014, Tomlinson and former chairman John Ryan confirmed they had taken over as joint-owners of Doncaster Rovers.[50] It was later announced the takeover had fallen through, though Tomlinson continues to be involved with the club.[51]

Tomlinson returned to Celtic Park on 7 September 2014, to take part in the MAESTRIO Charity Match, having been recruited to play for Rio Ferdinand's All-Stars against Paul McStay's Maestros.[52][53] The match was attended by a crowd of around 25,000 with proceeds benefiting several charities including UNICEF, War Child, the Celtic Foundation and the Rio Ferdinand Foundation.[54]


Whilst One Direction has put forth group efforts towards charity work, Tomlinson himself has also been involved in charity work outside the band. He, along with band member Payne, co-hosted a charity ball held in honour of Believe in Magic, an organisation that supports terminally ill children.[55] Both Tomlinson and Payne got in a bidding war at the charity ball which resulted in Tomlinson donating £10,000 for Payne's face to be painted. He personally donated £2 million to Believe in Magic, while collectively he and Payne donated over £5 million.[55][56] Fellow band members Niall Horan and Harry Styles could not attend the event, but also donated items to be auctioned off for Believe in Magic.

Tomlinson has been involved with charity work for several years. He has been thoroughly involved with Bluebell Wood Children's Hospice and is one their patrons.[57] Tomlinson tends to get active social media to help boost support and awareness for his charity work. For his 23rd birthday, One Direction fans established a donation drive for Bluebell Wood Children's Hospice and set the bar high for the donation target.[58] Tomlinson also turned to social media along with some of his family members for the charity Niamh's Next Step. This gained the charity several hundred followers on their Twitter account which drew in more awareness to the cause.[59] During One Direction's hiatus, Tomlinson wants to increase his charity work with his newly found free time. He says about the charity work: "Being my age and being able to be in a position where I can help people out and give opportunities to other people is the most exciting thing to me."[33]

In April 2016, Tomlinson was announced to be joining the Soccer Aid 2016 star line-up, an biennial fundraiser for the children's organisation UNICEF. He played for the England squad alongside Robbie Williams, Olly Murs, Paddy McGuinness, Jack Whitehall, Marvin Humes, John Bishop and others on 5 June 2016.[citation needed] Tomlinson played against his bandmate Niall Horan, who appeared for the Rest of the World team.[60]

Personal life

Tomlinson's parents, Troy Austin and Johannah Poulston, split when he was a toddler. He is estranged from his father.[61] He has four half-sisters from his mother's second marriage to Mark Tomlinson: Charlotte "Lottie", Félicité "Fizzy", and identical twins Daisy and Phoebe, who had roles as babies in the television series Fat Friends alongside their brother. Mark and Johannah divorced while Louis was competing on The X Factor. Tomlinson has another half-sister, Georgia, from his father's second marriage.[62] It was announced in October 2013 that his mother Poulston was expecting twins with her fiancé, Daniel Deakin. She gave birth to a set of fraternal twins, Ernest and Doris, on 12 February 2014.[63] Poulston married Deakin on 20 July 2014.[64] On 7 December 2016, his mother died at the age of 43, after battling leukemia for more than a year.[65]

In July 2015, it was reported that Tomlinson was expecting a baby with 23-year-old former stylist, Briana Jungwirth.[66] On 4 August 2015, on Good Morning America, he confirmed the reports.[67][68][69][70][71][72][73] Their son Freddie Reign was born in January 2016.[74][75][76][77] Tomlinson has stated in numerous interviews that he enjoys fatherhood and is looking forward to having more children in the future.[78]

On 4 March 2017, Tomlinson was arrested for battery after attacking a paparazzo at Los Angeles International Airport. He was booked and subsequently released on $20,000 bail; he was later due in court on 29 March 2017.[79][80]



Year Title Role Notes
2013 One Direction: This Is Us Himself Documentary concert film
2014 Where We Are – The Concert Film Himself Concert film


Year Title Role Notes
2006 If I Had You Boy Finding Body Television film
2010 The X Factor Contestant Singing Competition
2012 iCarly Himself Episode: "iGo One Direction"
2016 Family Guy Himself Episode: "Run, Chris, Run"



Title Year Peak chart positions Certifications Album
"Just Hold On"
(with Steve Aoki)
2016 2 20 8 40 7 25 17 34 15 52 TBA
"Back to You"
(featuring Bebe Rexha and Digital Farm Animals)
2017 8 11 21 33 11 52 12 12 38 40
"Miss You" 39 66 53 92 [A] [B] [C]
"—" denotes a single that did not chart or was not released.

Promotional singles

List of promotional singles, showing year released and album name
Title Year Peak chart positions Album
"Just Like You"[103] 2017 99 94 TBA

Awards and nominations

Year Award Category Result
2017 Teen Choice Awards[104] Choice Music: Collaboration – "Just Hold On" Won
2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards[105] Best Solo Breakout Won


  1. ^ "Miss You" did not enter the NZ Top 40 Singles Chart, but peaked at number four on the NZ Heatseeker Singles Chart.[100]
  2. ^ "Miss You" did not enter the Sverigetopplistan singles chart, but peaked at number 13 on the Sverigetopplistan Heatseeker chart.[101]
  3. ^ "Miss You" did not enter the Billboard Hot 100, but peaked at number six on the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart, which acts as an extension to the Hot 100.[102]


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  101. ^ "Veckolista Heatseeker – Vecka 49, 8 December 2017". Sverigetopplistan. Retrieved 9 December 2017. 
  102. ^ "Louis Tomlinson Chart History: Bubbling Under Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved 12 December 2017. 
  103. ^ Louis Tomlinson [@Louis_Tomlinson] (11 October 2017). "My next single will be a bit later this year but I wanted to share this with you now. This is for you lot ! #JustLikeYou" (Tweet) – via Twitter. 
  104. ^ Ramos, Dino-Ray (August 13, 2017). "Teen Choice Awards 2017 Winners: 'Wonder Woman', 'Beauty And The Beast', 'Riverdale' Among Honorees". Penske Business Media, LLC. Retrieved August 14, 2017. 
  105. ^ iHeartRadio [@iHeartRadio] (March 11, 2018). "Millions and millions of votes, and you decided that the wonderful and talented @Louis_Tomlinson is the winner for #BestSoloBreakout" (Tweet) – via Twitter. 

External links

  • Official website
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