It has now reached the point where One Direction’s popularity is greater in the U.S. than in England. If the sold out concerts, number one album, and mobs of fans following the boys’ every move doesn’t point to this – perhaps the media’s coverage of Harry Styles’ relationship with Taylor Swift does.
“It’s all good. We get it,” explained Liam Payne during a phone interview to “The Ralphie Show” regarding Harry’s sudden popularity in the press. “We know how it works.”
Styles’ new-found attention is the cause of a little joking amongst the boys though.
“Every so often,” Payne said. “He gets a little nudge and we try to rib at him for some things.”
It’s easy for the band to joke about such things after the past year. In March, One Direction released Up All Night in the States. It debuted at number one. Last month, the boy band’s follow-up LP, Take Me Home also topped the charts in its first week. 1D played sold out amphitheaters all summer and will return to play sold out arenas in 2013.
The result is an empire expected to grow to a $100 million business by the end of next year. Oh, and legions of fans who follow them everywhere.
“It’s difficult to move around, because there’s already loads of people,” explained Payne of the band’s attempts, sometimes failed, to travel in Manhattan. “I got out of the car the other day from driving to the hotel. I was followed by two bikes, a guy with a video camera, fans… we were just going to the shops to buy myself something for the show. It’s so crazy to think, you know, you’re in New York, the place you dreamed about coming to since you were a little kid, and not only are you in New York but you’re being followed by loads of people.”
The “loads of people” aren’t just for them exclusively. Even the band’s parents can cause a scene in public.
“I think they were down at some point. That was probably them causing a bit of a riot,” noted Payne of an incident Monday at “1D World” – a pop-up shop outside of Madison Square Garden. NYPD were on the scene after a mob formed when Payne’s parents decided to visit the store. The Payne’s were not with their son. “My dad’s more famous than me,” he joked.
Of course, there was already a lot of buzz outside of The World’s Most Famous Arena on Monday without Payne’s family there. One Direction would play a sold-out MSG that night, some what of a victory lap for the past year of success.
“The show couldn’t have gone anymore perfect,” said Payne. “I mean, we were well-nervous before we went out but… we couldn’t ask for more really.”
With two number one albums and two sold out tours in one year – what more could there be to ask for anyways?