X Factor winner James Arthur is ready to take on the music industry once more after re-signing to Simon Cowell's Syco label. Arthur, 28, was released from the Sony imprint in 2014, but with a buzz currently surrounding his latest single Say You Won't Let Go, Cowell has quickly snapped up one of his most talented X Factor winners. Will Arthur's second go at the music industry result in success?
The Middlesbrough-born singer won the nation over during the ninth series of ITV's X Factor in 2012 before being crowned the winner. Arthur's winner's single Impossible, a cover of Shontelle's ballad, stormed the charts and became the fastest-selling song from an X Factor champ after shifting 187,000 copies in less than 24 hours.
Arthur's momentum held strong for his second single You're Nobody 'Til Somebody Loves You, which peaked at number two on the UK charts in October 2013. One month later in November, Arthur's eponymously-titled debut album arrived and narrowly missed out on the top spot, beaten to #1 by Eminem.
However, Arthur's chart placings fell into an immediate tailspin, with third single Recovery managing a number 19 and the next, Get Down, barely scraping into the top 100.
Simultaneously, Arthur's personal life and outspoken nature hit the headlines and for all the wrong reasons. The singer was criticised for publicly slamming the likes of One Direction and Rita Ora, but his career really crashed when he was accused of making homophobic remarks.
Shortly before he was dropped from Syco, Cowell said of Arthur's behaviour in an interview: "I think him and I need to sit down and have a conversation, to be honest. I haven't phoned him but I'm going to have to sit down with him. Apart from anything else, this silly 'You said this, I said this...', it's all nonsense. He's just got to calm down a bit."
It seems Arthur has clearly calmed down enough for Cowell to offer him another record contract. The X Factor judge parted ways from Arthur in June 2014 as a mutual agreement but two years later, he is back in the fold. A source told The Sun of Arthur's new deal: "Over the last few years James has kept in touch with Simon. Simon has always thought James is a real talent but as soon as he heard the record he made up his mind to re-sign him. James has grown up a lot and realises he made mistakes in the past. Simon knows this."
Listen to James Arthur's Say You Won't Let Go:
Arthur appears to be firmly focused on his new music. After releasing Say You Won't Let Go on 9 September, the track soared to the top of the iTunes chart and even surpassed Lady Gaga's comeback single Perfect Illusion, which trailed behind at number 19 at one point. It is no surprise Arthur has hit the ground running as the new single perfectly showcases his sheer talent with emotive songwriting to the catchy melody.
Fans seem to be won over too with one commenting: "Is @JamesArthur23 at number 1 yet? A song in the charts that actually has feeling and means something. Deserves number 1, easily," while another said: "in love with @JamesArthur23's new song!" One particularly honest listener admitted: "James Arthur might be a complete bellend but he's got some serious talent."
There was clearly a reason why Arthur won The X Factor almost four years ago and if he continues to put the music before drama, there will always be space for his talent in the industry.
James Arthur's second album, aptly-titled Back From The Edge, is set for release on 4 November 2016.