About Harry Styles
In a 2019 interview with Apple Music, Harry Styles shared a memory from the early days of One Direction. They were in the studio in Sweden working on “What Makes You Beautiful.” First single, the rollercoaster train just starting to climb the track. Someone comes into the room and says there are a couple of girls outside. Why? the band asks. They’re looking for you guys. For One Direction. “And we’re all just like, ‘But we’re in Sweden!’”
Ah, the old, “who…us?” routine. Harry! Incorrigibly charming, dreamboat for starry-eyed youth the world over. And, as it turns out, a legitimate force in pop, the kind of artist who could bridge contemporary appeal with classic values in ways that felt fresh but familiar, universal.
Part of what had made One Direction so great was that they never shied away from the pleasures of boy-band pop, but never patronized their audiences or fell back on gimmicks, either: Never mind the no-dancing policy; they were writing songs, exploring music as something beyond the show. In his solo career, Styles (born 1994, in Redditch, England) has done much the same, combining soul (“Watermelon Sugar”), confessional soft rock (“Sign of the Times”), and psychedelia (“Sunflower, Vol. 6”) with a modern touch, summarizing where pop has been while also pushing it forward. “I’m just trying to go through life being a little less worried about stuff,” he said. “Definitely with working. Because ultimately, it’ll be okay.” He had a busy five years there. But he’s got a lifetime ahead of him.
BORNFebruary 1, 1994