Niall James Horan (born 13 September 1993) is an Irish singer and songwriter, best known as a member of the boy band One Direction. In 2010, Horan auditioned as a solo artist for the seventh series of the British televised singing competition The X Factor. He failed to progress to the "Boys" category at the "judges' houses", but after guest judge Nicole Scherzinger suggested that Niall join One Direction, with Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne and Louis Tomlinson, the group became a reality. The five-piece band made it to the final and finished in third place. Even though they did not win, One Direction was signed by Simon Cowell to a reported £2 million Syco record contract.
In his career as a member of One Direction, he has co-written many songs, beginning with "Taken", "Everything About You", "Same Mistakes", "Back for You" and "Summer Love" from their debut albums Up All Night and Take Me Home. In the latter, he also played guitar. He continued to co-write, including the songs "Don't Forget Where You Belong", "Why Don't We Go There" and "Story of My Life" for the album Midnight Memories; "Night Changes", "Fool's Gold" and "Change Your Ticket" for the album Four; and "Wolves", "A.M.", "Temporary Fix" and "Never Enough" for the band's fifth album Made in the A.M. He released his first single as a solo artist, "This Town", in 2016.
Niall James Horan was born on 13 September 1993 in Mullingar, Ireland. His parents, Bobby Horan and Maura Gallagher, divorced when he was five years old, so he and his brother Greg Horan had to live in both houses for some time. They later decided to move definitely with their father. He attended St. Kenny's National School primary school and, as a teen, Coláiste Mhuire, a Catholic boys school which are both located in or near Mullingar. Horan started playing guitar when his brother got one for Christmas but failed to play it, so Horan started to play with it and taught himself how to do it by playing it off YouTube. His aunt discovered his talent one day when she was in the car with Niall as he started singing. She originally thought the radio was on. As a teenager he performed at the Mullingar Arts Centre (in a fund-raiser for the local football team, the Shamrocks). He was also bagging a support slot with former X Factor contestant Lloyd Daniels at the famous Academy club in Dublin.