Published Wednesday, 27 August 2014
The X Factor judge Louis Walsh. (© ITV)
Simon may have tried to get rid of him back in 2007, but it wasn't long before the music mogul realised that was a big mistake and quickly returned the Irishman to the judges' desk where he belonged.
Louis has since survived every changing year of The X Factor panel, and he says this year's crop of judges - which include Cowell, Cheryl Ferndanez-Versini and Mel B - is just "perfect".
What are you most looking forward to this year?
Having Simon Cowell back. I think he's going to be different, I think he's going to be fun, I think there's going to be sparks between Simon, Cheryl and Mel B. That's the best thing about the show - Simon being back. There's good chemistry between all of us. Simon and Cheryl are very funny always annoying each other. Mel is just honest. This is the perfect X Factor panel, it really is.
In all of your years on the show, which of the show's alumni have made the biggest impression on you in their first auditions?
To be honest, I always remember JLS in their first audition. When they walked in they were the perfect group. Not just vocally, but mentally and the way they worked together. I loved working with a lot of other people - Shane Ward, Jedward for different reasons. But the most perfect act for me was JLS.
What is the biggest audition 'turn off' for you?
The biggest audition 'turn off' for me is when people talk themselves up. Why they're here, what they're going to do, everything, and then they don't deliver. They can't sing, they can't perform. There's no X Factor. That's the worst thing. I'm always looking for potential. Potential is the key word. If they're not a great singer - can they improve? And the likeability. We use that word a lot but likeability is so important.
In the past few series you've had a bit of a style makeover. What's your secret?
I'm getting older, as is Simon! I have to look after myself. I have a really good stylist called Caroline who looks after me, and I have a really good hair and make-up artist called Anna and she works her magic. So the secret? Anna and Caroline.
What are the toughest things about being an X Factor judge?
Telling people 'no, you're not good enough.' It's a very hard thing to say to people, because they come in and they think they've got it all. Then they perform and it's just ordinary. We get an awful lot of good people, and good people are the worst because they're not bad, they're just OK, and they don't have the star quality; they don't have the X Factor.
© UTV News