Pre-interview, the Star Observer overheard UK pop singer Olly Murs regale the previous journalist with his favourite joke: “What does a gay horse eat? Haaaaay…” (trust us, it’s funnier when he says it).
Post-interview, Murs spied this writer’s iPhone and asked if I used Grindr (looking rather disappointed when I sheepishly informed him I didn’t).
As for the interview itself? Murs, incorrigible flirt that he is, almost gave a hovering publicist a heart attack when he told the Star Observer he’s been assured he has perfect “blow job lips”.
Murs, you see, is from that distinctly British stable of male pop stars: those secure enough in their own sexuality to play up to their gay fans.
“I’m very comfortable with my sexuality. I’m a straight guy and I date women, but I get on really well with gay guys.
“The weirdest thing for me is when straight guys get really freaked out by gay guys. It’s almost like they’re insecure in their own sexuality.
“For me, I can be in a room full of gay men and have fun,” he enthused.
‘Having fun’ for Murs includes stripping down to a G-string on stage at British gay institution GAY, baring his bum cheeks for a room full of hollering gay men as he did in March 2011.
“The B-side from one of my first singles was called This One’s For The Girls, so I changed it to This One’s For The Boys when I played at GAY, and they loved it.
“The funniest thing is, I’m used to hearing high-pitched girl screaming after I play, and when I play to gay crowds it’s more like [drops 10 octaves] ‘YEAHHHH!’” he laughed.
“It’s like performing to the cast of the film 300.”
The 20009 X Factor runner-up first visited Australia a few years ago as a cash-strapped British backpacker, but returned in more comfortable style last month, having already delivered his record company two multi-platinum albums in his homeland.
“A lot of [TV talent show] people do come and go — one song or album, then they’re gone.
“I’ve had three number ones and two successful albums at this point, which is so much more than I ever dreamed of. Even if the next single or the next album isn’t as successful, I think I’ll be OK with it, because I feel like I’ve already had a good run.”
That may be a wise attitude, given reports have been circulating that Murs is planning on tackling white-boy rap on his next album.
“Nooo!” he cackled. “I said that as a joke in an interview once, and now it’s followed me around. I do rap a little verse on tour, filling in for a guy who raps on my album, but I’d never do a rap album.
“I think I can get away with a sneaky verse, but trust me — that’s all.”
INFO: Olly Murs’ album In Case You Didn’t Know (Sony) out now.