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Union J’s Josh Cuthbert talks about his radio dreams and dolphin wishes

And reveals his secret love of the Spice Girls


Our beloved Union J bae, Josh, is ready to spread his wings and branch out beyond the band. BUT DON’T THROW YOUR PHONE AT AN OWL IN DESPAIR!

Josh is still very much part of Union J, but he is starting his own side project. He’s going to be presenting his very own radio show on Heat Radio starting this Sunday!

We chatted to the budding radio host about his decision to go rogue:

Hi Josh! How’re you today? 

JC: Good thanks. A little bit ill but apart from that I’m all good.

We share that pain. So is this a symptom of balancing music, modelling and now radio?

JC: Well, I haven’t been ill for months and months but I’m at the end of Union J’s UK tour so I’m just a bit run down.

How do you manage to balance everything with so many commitments?

JC: The good thing is that we all have our individual things that we do outside of the band and this radio gig is going to be mine. We always try our best to work around each others schedules. It’s about making the best of the days and planning.

Planning? Don’t know the word.

JC: I’ve got quite a few friends in radio on quite a few different radio shows. I love being on the end of the mic getting interviewed, but I also really wanted to host my own show. I’m excited to get out there on 26th.

Do you have a particular moment which first sparked your interest in radio?

JC: I always remember listening to Kiss in the car with my mum on the way to school. I remember passing my driving test and I was listening to Rickie, Melvin and Charlie. The type of music that Kiss plays is the type I love – it’s a bit Urban, a bit R&B/pop. I just love radio in general and I think there’s nothing better than listening to a radio show and feeling like you know the host and their personality.

QUIZ: Which boyband member will you marry based on your taste in wedding dresses?

Are you excited for the audience to get to know you better on your show? 

JC: Yeah obviously when you’re in a band it’s more difficult to get your personality across because there are three other people, so I’m very excited to properly be myself. I hope people like the real me haha.

We’re sure they will! So what type of music will you be playing? 

JC: I’ll be playing a load of different stuff. Heat covers such a wide spectrum of music and I constantly listen to it in my car. You get new music and loads of old classics. Of course, I’ll be playing cool R&B but also some classics like Spice Girls and Blue.

What would you say to people that think that streaming services have killed radio?

JC: There’s that song isn’t there? *Sings ‘Video Killed the Radio Star’ to the tune of ‘Elvis Isn’t Dead’.* Oh wait I’m singing it wrong.

You tried and that’s the main thing.

JC: I think the day that radio dies will be a sad day and I hope that it never happens. I think that radio is so much more than just playing music, it’s a real show. It’s about games, interviews. On my show I’ll be doing a boyband special every week. I’ll be throwing back to boybands from the last 20 years.

Who would be your dream cohost? 

JC: Melvin from Kiss Breakfast. I’ve met him a couple of times and we’ve done a few TV shows with him. When I met him we just got on like a house on fire and he’s a very funny guy.

And your dream guest? 

JC: I’d love to meet David Beckham. I’m a big football fan and I think he’d be a really interesting guy. He’s done a lot in his life.

What would be the one question you would have to ask him?

JC: How do you look so cool all the time? How have you managed to stay looking that good for such a long time?

It’s called black magic. 

JC: He’s Mr. Cool. The only guy who can wear a beanie and still look cool.

You have described Union J’s upcoming album as ‘Bieber in a Band’. Could you explain? 

JC: I think Justin really set the tone for music when he came out with tunes like ‘What Do You Mean?’, ‘Sorry’ and ‘Where R U Now?’. I absolutely love it and I know the rest of the boys in the band do as well. We found that that type of music really suits us as well. It’s perfect for a band, as well as a solo artist, and it’s great for harmonies.

QUIZ: How well do you know Union J?

Sounds like it’s going to be very different to your other stuff. Will it be a shock for fans?

JC: It’s gonna be a huge difference. We’ve been on tour for the last couple of weeks and I wrote a few new songs. They’re so different to our old stuff that it’s kinda funny hearing them in the same set, but the reaction so far has been great and we haven’t even played our best ones yet. The sound is a lot more credible.

You also recently got into a bathtub with your bandmates to protest against the treatment of orcas in Sea World.

What do you think people can do to help the cause? 

JC: The first thing that people can do is obviously not go to Sea World and I advise everyone to watch the documentary ‘Blackfish’. which was a real eye-opener for me.

JC: It led me to watch a load more documentaries which highlighted to me how wrong the treatment of orcas and beautiful sea creatures is. It’s only when you see how intelligent these animals are you just think how on earth can us humans treat them like that. This planet we live on is so incredible. Why would you try to ruin it? It makes no sense to me.

Would you ever channel your political views into your music? 

JC: I mean I could write a song about dolphins and orcas haha.

We’d listen to it. Maybe you could call it…

JC: I could certainly channel the passion I have for that into music without mentioning the word orca.

Perfect for tropical house. 

JC: I’m sure it would be PETA’s anthem.

What is one piece of wisdom you would offer to your 14 year old self?

JC: Life is too short to worry about the small things in life and surround yourself with good people. If you’re around bad people, get rid of them. Amen sister.

Amen indeed. Thanks Josh! 

Catch Josh on Heat Radio from this Sunday 26th between 12-2pm.

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Written by David Farrell

David is the Head of Content at Maximum Pop!

Having studied Russian and Spanish at the University of Leeds, David moved to Moscow to work in the education sector. Upon returning to UK soil, David initially immersed himself in the wonderful world of MP! as a music writer.

Now head of all things content, David takes being a music fanboy to a whole new level, and can often be found dancing like there’s nobody watching to ‘Shout Out To My Ex’, obsessing over Lauren Jauregui and defending Taylor Swift’s honour.

David once appeared on TV in Armenia. Apparently, “it was awesome”.

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