Niall Horan Reveals What Blake Shelton Said to Him Immediately After Winning ‘The Voice’ (Exclusive)

Niall Horan Reveals What Blake Shelton Said to Him Immediately After Winning ‘The Voice’ (Exclusive)

Niall Horan opened up to PEOPLE about his friendship with Blake Shelton and how his time on The X Factor helped make him a better coach on The Voice

Niall Horan, Blake Shelton

Niall Horan and Blake Shelton. Photo:Trae Patton/NBC/Getty

With Team Niall besting Team Blake on season 23 of The Voice, it seems Niall Horan has secured eternal bragging rights over the country star.


The “Heaven” singer, 29, opened up to PEOPLE ahead of his intimate Spotify gig in New York City about his time as a coach on The Voice, and revealed the hilarious quip Blake Shelton made immediately after Horan and Gina Miles’ victory.

“When we left the seat, they announced the winner and I stood up, and then he came for a big hug,” Horan recalled with a laugh. “I gave him a big hug, and he said, ‘I taught you everything you know.’ That’s all he said, not congratulations or anything.”

Still, the One Direction alum knows he’s made a friend for life in Shelton, 46, whose 23rd season on the NBC competition series was his last.

Spotify Celebrates Niall Horan's "The Show" Album Release with fans

Niall Horan.Noam Galai/Getty Images for Spotify


“I’m going to miss him. He is not one of those famous friends, in my eyes. I think if I had met him outside of The Voice, I would have probably been friends with him anyway,” Horan said. “Weirdly enough, we’ve got a lot in common, we’re quite similar people. Though not in dress sense.”

Horan is set to return for season 24 next year, and will compete alongside Reba McEntire, John Legend and Shelton’s wife Gwen Stefani.

“I’m going to miss [Blake], but I get to work with the other half of that marriage,” he says. “I met Gwen at the afterparty for this season’s Voice. She came and surprised Blake on the last night, and she was so funny and so cool, so I’m excited.”

As he coached Miles to a win, Horan said he was able to look to his own past as a contestant on a similar show, The X Factor. The Irish star entered the British competition series in 2010 as a solo artist, and eventually placed third as a member of One Direction.

Spotify Celebrates Niall Horan's "The Show" Album Release with fans


Niall Horan.Noam Galai/Getty Images for Spotify

“[The X Factor] did come into play more than I thought it would, or more than I thought I would allow it to,” he said. “Being there with the contestants every week, picking songs, keeping them calm — because it’s crazy how talented these young kids are, and with that level of talent comes a level of seriousness, and I was always trying to get them to enjoy it.”

He continued: “Having come from a show like that, it felt normal to be doing The Voice to me. If I was just a singer and I hadn’t been on a show like that before, I’m sure I would have been a bit more deer in the headlights, but I knew what I was getting myself into, and I think it was helpful.”

Horan is currently gearing up for the release of his third album, The Show, which will hit shelves on Friday.


He gave a select number of fans a sneak preview of the album on Tuesday at an intimate gig in New York, where he played hits both old (“Slow Hands,” “This Town”) and new (“Meltdown,” “You Could Start a Cult”).

“I’ve tried different sounds, but the record doesn’t feel like it’s anyone else’s record, it still feels like a Niall Horan record, which is a good thing,” he told PEOPLE. “I’ve been able to develop, but not scare too many people away I don’t think. Although the album’s not out yet, so we’ll find out!”



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