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Who Is Niall Horan? Look Back at The Voice Coach's Incredible Career

The multitalented Irish singer-songwriter won The Voice in Seasons 23 and 24.

By Jessica White

Many talented musicians have joined The Voice's panel during its 24 seasons, but two-time Coach Niall Horan's red chair reign has been nothing short of incredible.  

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Watch The Voice on NBC and Peacock. 

The "Heaven" singer has been crushing it, winning The Voice during his debut season as a Coach with his Team Niall Artist Gina Miles and scoring a second consecutive win during his red chair return in Season 24 with soul-rocker Huntley.

RELATED:The Awards Niall Horan Won For His Solo Work and with One Direction 

Horan experienced a meteoric rise to fame as part of his own singing competition in 2011 and has since had both a prolific group and solo career. Following his 2016 solo debut, Horan has emerged as one of the most talented singer-songwriters in the industry, making his expertise invaluable as he helps Artists achieve success on The Voice. 

Below, relive Horan's illustrious music stardom to witness his journey from reality competition fame to The Voice's red chair. 

Niall Horan sits at his coaches chair on The Voice Episode 2418

What singing competition was Niall Horan on? 

Horan skyrocketed to fame in 2011 after auditioning for The X Factor in the U.K. at 16 years old. Horan auditioned for Simon Cowell, currently and America's Got Talent producer and Judge , who saw magic in the making.

Instead of competing as a solo artist, Horan was encouraged to combine talents with four fellow solo vocalists who had blown the crowd away. That's when Horan met the group of other powerhouse performers who'd change his life forever. 

Zayn Malik, Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson and Niall Horan posing for photos holding awards.

What pop group was Niall Horan in? 

After combining their voices on The X Factor, Horan, Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, Zayn Malik, and Liam Payne formed the smash boy band One Direction.

One Direction won third place during The X Factor but achieved massive global success following their time on the show. Cowell signed One Direction, leading the band to become an international sensation with the release of their debut 2011 single "What Makes You Beautiful."

With the release of their 2011 debut album Up All Night, One Direction would soon become one of the most celebrated boy bands of all time. 

RELATED: Which One Direction Songs Did Niall Horan Write? 

One Direction's second album, Take Me Home, was also praised, delivering fans the hits "Live While We're Young" and "Little Things" — which spent 18 weeks on Billboard's Hot 100. By the time One Direction released their third album, 2013's Midnight Memories, they'd achieved even more fame and success, with its singles "Best Song Ever" and "Story of My Life" becoming some of One Direction's most timeless hits. 

One Direction's fourth studio album, 2014's Four, extended their winning streak with hits like "Night Changes" and "Steal My Girl." In 2015, One Direction graced fans with their final album to date, Made in the A.M., release following the exit of Malik.

After five blockbuster studio albums and several international tours, One Direction went their separate ways in 2015. 

Niall Horan's Solo Career

Niall Horan posing at the 2017 MuchMusic Video Awards carpet.

Horan launched his solo career with his debut single "This Town," which peaked at No. 20 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2016. Horan's angelic vocals and vulnerable lyricism were instantly applauded, and his solo career picked up further momentum with the 2017 release of his fan-favorite single "Slow Hands," which peaked at No. 11 on the Hot 100. 

Both chart-climbers ended up on Horan's solo album debut, Flicker. The album was well-received, dominating the radio waves in the U.S. and Ireland, boasting an eclectic folksy verve that deviated from One Direction's pop sound. Horan's creative process for the album was chronicled in the short documentary On the Record: Flicker

Niall Horan released his sophomore album, Heartbreak Weather in 2020. The album produced singles like "No Judgement," "Nice to Meet Ya," and "Put a Little Love on Me."

Horan graced fans with new music in February 2023 with the release of "Heaven," his lead single from what would become his third studio album, The Show. In April 2023, Horan released The Show's second single, "Meltdown" to hype listeners up for the release.  

RELATED: Niall Horan & John Legend Sing "The Show" in a Duet 

During a March 2023 chat with NBC Insider, Horan opened up about his creative process for constructing The Show. 

“I would say for the new stuff, there is some experimentation going on," Horan revealed. "Yes, just stuff I've gathered over the years, you know, like ideas that I've had, things that I've learned influenced me, I'm starting to hear them all already come through my music." 

"I haven't released music since I was 25 or 26, and to be closing in on 30, I think you just gather more information as you go," Horan continued. "So I'm starting to hear all of that stuff [in] my music. And what I'm saying is a bit more grown up I guess. And I wanted the sound of that to match what I'm saying. So I think it's my favorite stuff. And the best stuff that I've made." 

The Show was released as an album in June 2023, and Horan is taking it on the road for The Show world tour in 2024. Horan's tour kicks off in Belfast in February before making its way to the U.S. in May 2024. Tickets can be purchased on Horan's website

In a December 2023 interview with Good Morning America, Horan teased details of the energizing tour, which will include a lineup of mystery special guests.

"I don't really know how much I want to give away because I've been putting this show together since I was about 10..." Horan revealed. "The stage is already being built, there are tests going on and other tricks that we're trying as we speak."  

"The setlist will be a combination of all the albums that I've made, some hidden surprises here and there, and maybe some special guests along the way I'd imagine," Horan concluded. "But apart from that, I'm not telling you anything!" 

Niall Horan's Collaborations with Taylor Swift and Lewis Capaldi 

Split of Taylor Swift and The Voice coaches

As one of the biggest superstars in pop music, Horan has worked with several legends in the music industry, Taylor Swift included. Swift hit up Horan for help performing at Wembley Stadium for her 2018 Reputation tour, where they both sang "Slow Hands."  

Later, in 2019, Horan and Lewis Capaldi became friends online and hit it off so well that they decided to collaborate on some projects, leading Horan to join Capaldi on stage for several of his performances. 

RELATED: All About Niall Horan's Epic Irish Road Trip With His Best Friend, Lewis Capaldi 

The two then took their talents on the road for the documentary, Niall Horan's Homecoming: The Road to Mullingar with Lewis Capaldi. The film centers around Capaldi and Horan's friendship as the two young men venture off on an epic road trip throughout Ireland. 

What is Niall Horan's nationality?  

Horan — the only member of One Direction who isn't British — is Irish.

Currently, splitting time between his home in Mullingar and his Laurel Canyon residence in southern California, Horan had the honor of performing at the White House for their 2023 St. Patrick's Day celebration. 

"It’s an honor to be invited and represent my country," Horan posted on X (formerly Twitter) ahead of the performance. "Looking forward to performing and celebrating St. Patrick’s Day at the White House tomorrow." 

Niall Horan playing the guitar

Niall Horan on The Voice 

Niall Horan on The Voice 2301

Niall Horan became a Coach on The Voice in Season 23, joining the panel alongside Coaches Kelly ClarksonChance the Rapper, and Blake Shelton

"I’m excited to be joining this season of The Voice as a Coach," Horan said in a statement. "I’m looking forward to meeting and mentoring the new crop of talent while we battle it out with the other teams!” 

Horan hit the ground running in his debut season, plucking whatever powerhouse singer-songwriters he witnessed during the intense Blind Auditions. As Shelton's final season in the red chair, he quickly teased Horan was replacing him, developing a wholesome father-son dynamic within the competition.  

RELATED: An Official Recap of Team Niall on The Voice Season 24 

Not many debut Coaches can seize the victory, but Horan's team was exceptional, resulting in his Season 23 win with Gina Miles.

Niall Horan sits in his chair

Horan returned as a Coach for Season 24 alongside newbie Coach Reba McEntire and red chair veterans John Legend and Gwen Stefani. Season 24's Team Niall proved to have star power, with Horan's soul-rocker Huntley emerging as a frontrunner and winning the competition. With two consecutive wins under his belt, Horan has been an incredible Coach on The Voice.  

What awards has Niall Horan won?

Horan achieved astronomical fame before he was even 18, so he's collected quite an impressive roster of awards and accolades throughout his sprawling career.

In 2017, Horan scored a People's Choice Award for Favorite Breakout Artist after dropping his debut album, Flicker. The same year, he won the Artist of the Year award at the American Music Awards. I

n 2018, Horan won two iHeartRadio Music Awards for Best New Pop Artist and Best Lyrics for his sultry track "Slow Hands."

Of course, these honors don't scratch the surface of the awards Horan has received as a member of One Direction: The group took home four VMAs, six Billboard Music Awards, three People's Choice Awards, and seven American Music Awards throughout their six-year tenure. 

Niall Horan accepting an award on stage during the 2017 American Music Awards.

Originally published Apr 26, 2023.