FEMALE Exclusive: Interview With Shane Filan

The prince of love songs, or as some of you might recognise as the front man of Westlife, was in Malaysia last week! And as a girl who still listens to My Love and Uptown Girl, of course I said YES to a chance to chat with Shane.

Shane came down to KL for a showcase and to promote his latest album ‘Love Always’.

You know what they say, some men just age like fine wine. This Irish pop star might already be 38 years old (IKR!), but if there’s one two things that hasn’t changed, it’s his boy band charm and his love for all things ballads. Truth be told, as big of a fan I am of Westlife, I’ve never had the chance to see them perform live. So I’m counting this opportunity to watch Shane sing as a better-late-than-never gift from the heavens above.

Following two successful solo albums and tours, Shane is back with his third album ‘Love Always’ and the 12 track album features some of Shane’s favourite ballads, like HeavenMake Me Feel My Love and Eternal Flame along with fan favourites, like Beautiful in White. 

FEMALE: So what made you decide to come back to Asia this year?

Shane: “Well obviously the album ‘Love Always’ has been released now in Asia. So I wanted to come to KL because I haven’t been here in awhile and I want to go to as many countries as I can to see my fans. Every country is important to me and Malaysia is no exception. There are so many memories that were made here with the guys, we used to come here a lot and we had a lot of success here.”

FUN FACT: The last time Shane was in KL, it was for Westlife’s Gravity Tour back in 2011 – which was also their fifth visit to the country as a band.

FEMALE: My favourite song of yours is Knee Deep In My Heart. What’s your favourite song to perform?

Shane: “Oh thank you! Knee Deep In My Heart is definitely a very important song for me. It’s a great upbeat song for a crowd. But from this new album, to perform, I’d say Heaven and Beautiful In White. This album is full of so many wonderful classic songs, and it’s wonderful to sing them because people know the words. I’m a fan of the song as much as the audience are fans of the songs, which is nice to share that with people.

FEMALE: What made you decide to revisit all these classic love songs for this album?

Shane: “I’ve been wanting to make an album full of love songs. Through my years with Westlife, we sang lots of great love songs and that was kind of our signature sound. So for me, in this solo world, it’s no different.”

FEMALE: Are any of the love songs you’ve written based on your own experience?

Shane: “Absolutely! Knee Deep In My Heart is about Gillian (my wife). That was when I found out I was in love with her. If I write a song, it’s usually a true story. I find it easier to write songs if their based on a real event, I don’t think I’ll be able to write songs about being heartbroken because my life isn’t falling apart. I’ll leave that to other people like Adele….or Taylor Swift!

FEMALE: So since you’re an expert with love songs, what do you think is the greatest gift for a guy? 

Shane: “Aftershave. I think it’s important for a girl to like the smell she smells on her man. It’s no point for a guy to like a scent but his girlfriend doesn’t. That’s not good. So go shopping, pick out five or six smells you like, let him choose his favourite and buy it for your boyfriend or husband. Then you’ll get to smell it everyday!”

FEMALE: You’ve been in the industry for so long. What do you think about music today?

Shane: “I think music is in one of the best places its ever been. There’s a huge market for artists who’ve been around for a long time (Elton John, U2, Rod Steward). They’re probably bigger now than they ever were. The world has become so advance with social media and new artists with younger markets can play stadiums. The industry is really healthy and there’s a great mix of music out there right now. With streaming services like Spotify and Apple Music, they’ve created a platform that probably saved the music industry.”

FEMALE: If you’re given a chance to collaborate with any of the new artists right now. Who would it be and why?

Shane: “An older artist would be Shania Twain and Bryan Adams. But for new artist right now, I’d probably say Ed Sheeran. He’s my favourite new artist at the moment. He’s a great singer and a great contemporary sound. So yeah, I’ll sing a song with him. Why not?”

FEMALE: Lastly, can you give me a five word love story?

Shane: “To cover a whole story? Well, I guess it’ll have to be…”

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