Former X Factor star Jay James says music agent asked him to fake wife having a miscarriage in bid to secure publicity

FORMER X Factor star Jay James has revealed that a music agent once asked him to fake his wife having a miscarriage in a bid to secure publicity.

Jay, who finished eighth on the ITV show in 2014 and went on to join vocal harmony group The Overtones, told how he ditched the representative after the callous suggestion.

But he told how it added to his and wife Victoria’s heartache years later when they did suffer a miscarriage, saying: “It was like a seed had been planted.”

Jay, who served in the Royal Navy, revealed after being voted off X Factor that he was told he should consider peddling false stories to boost his profile.

He revealed: “The music industry can be a horrible place.

"There was one moment when I was signing to an agent after The X Factor, and he said, ‘We need to boost your profile. Are there any stories we can talk about?’

“I said, ‘No, I’m just a regular guy.’ 

“Then he suggested that if my wife was pregnant, and then suddenly she wasn’t, that would give good headlines.

“Obviously I parted ways with them after that. But years later, it came true. Victoria did fall pregnant and miscarried.

“It was almost like a seed had been planted by that idiot. It was heartbreaking.” 

Singer and songwriter Jay, whose real name is Jay James Picton, now has children Nova, seven, and Franklin, two, with former glamour model Victoria.

And his career is back on the rise after joining Mike Crawshaw, Darren Everest and Mark Franks in platinum-selling group The Overtones in 2019.

But Jay, who was mentored by Simon Cowell on the talent show, admits he struggled to find his place in the  “cut-throat” music world.

And he gave his support to Rebecca Ferguson, who this year complained to police about “years of abuse” she suffered at the hands of music execs.

The X Factor 2010 runner-up claims she was targeted while working to build up her career.

Her complaint rocked the music industry, sparking speculation that the pop world could soon be facing its own #MeToo moment.

And Jay — who became close to Rebecca after supporting her on tour in 2012 — said: “It’s difficult to talk about someone’s experiences because you don’t really know what has happened, but she is unbelievably strong and very articulate.

“She has been really brave in speaking out and I hope she gets the chance to express everything she wants to.”

Jay went on: “When I was in the Navy I earned £50 a day and was happy, so when I say I didn’t go into music seeking fame and fortune,  that is real talk.

“But you have to drive for success, and you think you have to listen to people to succeed, which is difficult when everyone wants to have an input.

“There’s a battle between taking the good from people — I never thought that I knew it all — and becoming so diluted that you’re no longer you.

“I never fell victim to becoming someone I didn’t want to be. But I recognise that could have happened. It’s a very difficult, cut-throat industry.

“And there’s a lot of very hungry people who get caught up in all of that.

‘Very hungry people’

“What I feel so grateful for is that the lads from The Overtones are so authentic. 

“We are all exactly the same when we’re on stage as we are off it.”

The Overtones, whose new single Rose Tinted is out now, will release their latest album, called 10, on  July 30 to mark the band’s ten-year anniversary and will tour in November.

Jay said: “I feel privileged to be part of the band’s legacy.”

Rita drives fans crazy

RITA ORA gives fans a sneak peek  of her new music video as she smoulders at the wheel of a convertible car.

The singer posted the snap, with tousled hair, big shades and necklaces, on Instagram. She wrote: “Grateful. Happy. Can’t wait for you all to see the video.” Rita, who relocated Down Under to be a judge on The Voice Australia, seems to be having a blast out there while dating movie director Taika Waititi.

Hopefully we haven’t lost her permanently to the other side of the world.


HE’S covered rock, dance,rap and reggae – but Ed Sheeran may not be done with genre-hopping just yet.

The hitmaker is now thinking about moving into head-banging heavy metal.

He says: “I was really into death metal as a kid. I listened to Cradle of Filth and Slipknot and all that stuff. I’m not saying I could ever step into that world.

“I learnt all those riffs on guitar as a kid.

“That’s something I’ve never thought about doing – but something I would not be opposed to creating.”

Ed, we think you’d look great with black eye make-up and a spiked dog collar  . . . 

‘Toxic’ Love Isle Jake gaslighted me, says his ex

THE ex-girlfriend of Love Islander Jake has accused him of gaslighting her, and of “toxic” behaviour.

It comes as the blonde-loving water engineer has blown hot and cold with on-screen love interest Liberty.

Jake’s former flame – who he dated for four months last year before splitting with her in  January – took to social media when he claimed he’d been single throughout the pandemic.

She wrote: “Lonely and single for eight months? Have a day off.” 

And she added: “A note to those who have told me/ messaged me to ‘be kind’, I’m a good person with a good heart, hurt mine and I’ll hurt yours.”

She later revealed that she had been blindsided by him going on Love Island. 

In a post that has since been deleted she wrote: “I wasn’t aware he had applied or been accepted onto Love Island.

“I realise how my comment may be viewed as being damaging, but it’s damaging when you’re being gaslighted. Toxic behaviour, denying and making you question facts and feelings.

“Being angry doesn’t mean I’m being hateful it means I am loving myself enough to get upset at my own mistreatment.

“Those of you who want to form an opinion are more than welcome to and I can only blame myself for the response to my post. However, I am a human being who is hurting, angry and upset.

“I shouldn’t have to keep quiet about it along with anyone else who might feel the same way toward someone.

“Everyone is entitled to share their own, personal stories and that was mine.”

Gaslighting is a form of psychological abuse where a  person is made to question their sanity by another who manipulates them.

A source close to Jake said: “This bears no resemblance to the Jake we know and love, who we hope viewers are seeing for themselves on screen.”

A Love Island spokesperson said: “Jake has no means of defending himself from these labels, which are no doubt hurtful for his family and friends to read.”


HE’S usually cracking jokes, but comedian Johnny Vegas is seen getting tearful on new ITV show Cooking With The Stars.

Presenter Emma Willis tells us that putting on an apron means a lot to him as he wants to impress his six-year-old son, Tom.

Emma, who co-hosts with comic Tom Allen, said: “We didn’t anticipate how much emotion it would bring up in people – we see quite a lot of emotion from Johnny Vegas.

“Maybe this will be a surprise because he is the comedian – he says he’s perceived as the joker, but people don’t realise how much the show means to him. There were a few touching moments of tears, because he wants to cook  better for his son and get recipes to pass onto him.”

Johnny appears on the cooking contest, which kicks off on Tuesday, alongside Shirley Ballas, Naughty Boy and Catherine Tyldesley.

'Awful' show game slated

ITV has been slammed as “irresponsible” for an “awful” game in which Islanders were quizzed about what cosmetic procedures they have had.

On last Tuesday’s episode the girls – Sharon, Faye, Chloe, Liberty, Rachel and Kaz  – were asked to list their enhancements.

Ashton Collins,  the director of Save Face – the government-approved register for non-surgical cosmetic practitioners – branded the footage “toxic” and said it should have had a health warning.

Ashton blasted:  “The fact they orchestrated those questions is awful.  It perpetuates this expectation they’ve had work done and it normalises it to the point where young girls will think it’s expected of them.

“It’s so toxic for young girls watching this because it’s creating this perception that these treatments have to be done if they are to be considered attractive or be accepted. They aspire to look like these people and it’s just so unhealthy. 

“We’ve seen a 37 per cent rise in people searching for lip fillers on our website since Love Island began.”

It is believed the contestants are asked   if they have had any cosmetic procedures.

But Ashton adds: “To ask them in a game,  is very irresponsible.

 “ITV should  put out safety messages about some of the content the contestants talk about.”


FERNE MCCANN is being cheered up by Brit racing driver Luciano Bacheta following her break-up with boyfriend Jack Padgett.

A source said: “Ferne and Luciano have become friendly since she split with Jack, and they have followed each other on social media and swapped a few messages.”

Reality star Ferne has been commenting on the 2012 Formula 2  champ’s Instagram photos – including one where he adds a caption hinting at romance.

The snap  shows two orange supercars and  Luciano – who is also a stunt driver – posted: “The lack of backseats in my life is starting to cause a problem.”

Ferne playfully replied: “Why?” . . . alongside three orange emojis.

A source close to Ferne last night insisted the pair were not romantically involved. 

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