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‘X Factor’ Winner James Arthur Performs New Song ‘Emily’ for His Future Child

Jill O'Rourke

Jill O'Rourke

James ArthurYouTube/Vevo

The X Factor UK winner James Arthur stopped by Today to perform his new single “Emily” and talk about the emotional meaning behind the song. Arthur, who won Season 9 of the talent show in 2012, wrote the song about his future daughter. The singer doesn’t have a child right now, but he hopes to one day be a father.


James Arthur Performs Meaningful New Song ‘Emily’

Arthur recently released his fourth studio album, titled It’ll All Make Sense in the End. One of the album’s tracks is called “Emily.” The singer told the Today hosts what the song means to him, saying that having a child “was a very realistic possibility” at the time he wrote it.

“Sadly, it didn’t work out,” Arthur shared. “But it provided me with a lot of interesting things to think about. What would I be like as a dad, and all that kind of stuff. So I’m very proud to have written the song, and hopefully one day Emily will be a real thing.”

Arthur taped an intimate performance of the song for Today. While strumming the guitar, he sings, “Dear Emily, I really wanna write this carefully.” He goes on to tell Emily that he used to be “a rolling stone” with an “empty soul,” but he was “living in a different world” then.


In the song, Arthur also sings about asking Emily’s mom to marry him. In real life, the singer split from his longtime girlfriend Jessica Grist earlier this year. Grist was a backup dancer on The X Factor when Arthur competed.

SEE ALSO: ‘X FACTOR’ WINNER JAMES ARTHUR SHUTS DOWN BODY-SHAMERS AFTER CHARITY SOCCER MATCH

What’s the Meaning Behind Arthur’s New Album Title?

Arthur also told the Today hosts about his new album It’ll All Make Sense in the End. The cover art depicts him and a younger version of himself in a post-apocalyptic setting. Arthur explained that he was in therapy while he wrote the album, and the title became a sort of mantra.


He shared that a lot of the problems he’s faced “stemmed from my childhood.” Arthur said he wanted to depict “the noise and the confusion in the background” contrasted with a “quiet moment” between his older and younger selves.

Arthur is heading out on tour next year. Check out his website for dates.

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About the Author

Jill O'Rourke

Jill O’Rourke is a contributor at Talent Recap, writing news stories and recaps for shows like ‘AGT,’ ‘The Voice,’ and ‘American Idol.’ She graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in English and Film Studies, and has been writing about pop culture since 2012, with previous bylines at Crushable and A Plus. Jill spends her free time binge-watching sitcoms and daydreaming about life as a hobbit

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