HITS Daily Double


One Direction alumnus and fresh Capitol signing Niall Horan has dropped his first solo single, “This Town,” on all major digital providers, including iTunes, Apple Music and Spotify. He’s also premiered a live “1 Mic 1 Take” video performance captured at the storied Capitol Studios; you can see the clip, which bowed on Vevo this morning, below. The single is set to debut on Ryan Seacrest’s syndicated show at presstime as well.

It's already flown to #1 at iTunes.

Greg Kurstin produced the string-accented acoustic ballad, which Horan wrote with Jamie Scott, Mike Needle and Daniel Bryer.

Coming just after UMG’s A&R meetings in Hampshire, U.K., Horan’s release is the first offering from a very important worldwide signing for the company and one of the top records of the meetings, according to many of the attendees.

Horan has an enormous social footprint, with 21m+ Twitter followers, 17.2m Instagram followers and 10m Facebook likes.

He’s managed, as he was in 1D, by Modest! chief Richard Griffiths, whose relationship with Capitol chief Steve Barnett goes back several decades; the pair have most recently worked closely on the lad band 5 Seconds of Summer, who were touted as having been discovered by 1D.

In case you needed reminding about the reach of Niall’s former group, One Direction earned $125m in 2015 alone, the majority coming from their 74-date world tour, which earned seven-figure grosses at each stop. Albums Up All Night (2011) and Take Me Home (2012) have sold 2m+ RTD, while 2013’s Midnight Memories moved 1.5m+ and Four (2014) sold more than 1m. Singles “What Makes You Beautiful” (2011, 4.9m) and “Story of My Life’ (2013, 2.9m) are their top-selling tracks. The lads initially announced their hiatus in August, three months before they released Made in the A.M., the last album under their SYCO/Columbia deal, which has sold 860k RTD.

"Thank you to all the One Direction fans for your love and support as always," reads a message from Horan to his admirers. "I'm looking forward to the next part of this journey together."