Simon Cowell has gone from successful record executive to one of the world’s most famous TV personalities. He’s been the judge on X Factor and America’s Got Talent for many years, continually climbing the ladder of stardom.
But it hasn’t all been an easy ride. Fans of his will know he’s been through a battle of his own in recent times.
Cowell was rushed to the hospital last year with what turned out to be low blood sugar, and for the last 12 months, he’s been on a vegan diet. Now, he’s markedly gone down in weight, and the result is stunning!
I will always have the biggest respect for those people who dare to get up on stage. Hell, at one point it was my biggest dream as well, but the truth is I don’t think I’d ever be able to cope with the pressure.
Now imagine you get up on stage as an amateur musician or dancer, or with any other specific talent that lands you in America’s Got Talent, X-Factor or American Idol. Not only will you be on television, but you’ll be doing your thing in front of a live audience and a set of judges that includes the notoriously harsh Simon Cowell, among others.
Personally, I think Simon Cowell is a great judge, don’t get me wrong. At the same time, since he’s got so much experience from music business, he can be somewhat harsh and brutally honest towards the people auditioning. With that in mind, I will always tip my hat to those who get up on stage in front of him.
Simon Cowell might seem blunt, but in my opinion, that doesn’t make him a bad judge or person.
On the contrary, he’s a greatly respected man in the industry, and I think he’s a role model for many because of his sheer determination and self-belief. More, he’s not afraid of showing his feelings; we’ve seen him cry following several emotional auditions.
Simon Cowell went from working on music labels to becoming one of the world’s most influential music executives. These days, he’s a multi-million industry himself, and continues to do great things as a judge across multiple talent shows.
In recent times, he’s taken it upon himself to lead a very nutritious and healthy lifestyle, which has contributed to him losing more than 50 pounds over the last 12 months.
So how did he get here? This is the story of Simon Cowell.
Simon Cowell – childhood
Simon Cowell was born Oct 7, 1959 in the borough of Lambeth in London, England. He had a middle-class upbringing at his parents’ house in Elstree, a suburb which had a famous film and television studio. Simon grew up literally beside the show business world which he would conquer in later life.
Simon wasn’t overly fond when it came to school. He was sent to boarding school in Dover, England, but he never liked it, and the teachers wouldn’t tolerate his behavior at all.
At 16, he got suspended and left the school. Later in life, during an appearance on a British TV show, he was handed one of the letters he sent home to his parents at the time.
“Dear Mum and Dad, I hope you’re happy to have finally got rid of me”, Cowell wrote according to Daily Star.
“I also hope you’re happy in your centrally heated warm house and you have a lot to eat, because I’m lying in a dormitory which has icicles on the inside, and there is nothing to eat. I’m freezing cold and hungry. I hope you’re finally satisfied. Simon.”
Today, Cowell can laugh about the whole experience of attending boarding school.
“I’m glad I went through it. I was bored, I kind of knew I’d learnt everything I needed to learn; I could add up, I could read English, I could write, whatever,” he said.
“Every time I was sitting in chemistry lessons with stupid Bunsen burners and stuff, I thought, ‘I’m not going to do that when I’m 30.’ I’d get bored and I’d get frustrated and I couldn’t wait to leave.”
First job in the music business
Well, safe to say that he wasn’t doing that when he turned 30.
Cowell’s father was on the board of directors for the famous record label EMI, where he was in charge of the company’s property division.
Following Simon dropping out of school, he needed a job. His mother Julie saw an ad for a job in the EMI mail room, and he later got the job. His father was then able to re-hire him as an assistant, where his responsibilities were to find new talents and develop artists.
Simon Cowell continued moving up the ladder and eventually left EMI in the late 1980s. He started his own, independent, music label E&S Music, but it wasn’t successful at all and he had to shut it down. In 1985, however, he decided to give it another try and formed Fanfare Records. This time, things turned out differently.
At least for a while.
He signed and found success with several artists, but four years later, the show was over. Cowell was left bankrupt and deeply in debt by the time he had to close the company down.
Simon Cowell – music label career
He moved back home to live with his parents; something that could’ve broken anyone. For Simon Cowell, though, it was a “relief”.
“Everything went – my house, my Porsche, all the things I thought were important,” he explained. “I had nice food every night at home. I was quite happy, really.”
Simon never abandoned his dream of working in the music industry. Next up, he founded S Records Label, and signed boybands like 5ive and Westlife. He also signed artist Jerome, who recorded the Righteous Brothers’ hit Unchained Melody in 1995, which turned out to be a top-selling single.
He later founded another label, signing classic groups like Il Divo, but it was the talent shows that would take him to the next level.
“My talent is for creating things the public will like,” he explained. “I’m interested only in making money, for myself, and the people I work for. I mean, that’s absolutely the only criterion I attach.”
In 2001, the world of entertainment would witness the birth of a new entity. Together with Spice Girls manager Simon Fuller, Simon Cowell created the program Pop Idol, on which he starred as a judge. The show became a smash-hit among the viewers, and Simon a mega-celebrity overnight.
Talent show success
His tight T-shirt and now classic catchphrase, “I don’t mean to be rude but,” became a trademark, and just a year later, Fox picked up the show. Now it was headed for the US, and Simon all of a sudden became a celebrity across the Atlantic.
The first season finale – which Kelly Clarkson won – attracted more than 26 million viewers, and Simon quickly understood that there was a huge amount of money to be made.
He decided to release special American Idol-themed records, with Simon Fuller owning and being in charge of the show, as well as managing the winners.
Simon became a multi-millionaire in just a couple of years. The talent shows including X Factor and America’s Got Talent generated huge amounts of money for him, as well as other record companies, and in 2006, he got a new deal.
Cowell remained a judge on American Idol, for which he got around $36 million dollars per series for another five years. At the same time, he also signed a three-year “golden handcuffs” deal with ITV worth around $35 million.
In more recent times, though he still works hard with several of his businesses, Simon has become a family man as well.
Simon Cowell – hospital visit
In 2013, he and his girlfriend Lauren Silverman announced that they were expecting their first child. On Valentine’s Day of 2014, they welcomed their son, Eric.
“Meeting Lauren and becoming a dad was the most fantastic thing to happen in my life,” Cowell, then 54 years old, said.
“It’s hard when you have kids at my age but it’s amazing. When you work as hard as I do, you think, ‘What’s it all going to be for at the end?’ Then somebody like him comes along and it’s all worthwhile.”
Of course, though working hard and having a family are admirable things, it’s important to also stop for a second and make sure that your body’s doing OK. That became abundantly clear to Simon when, in October of 2017, he was rushed to the hospital after fainting and falling down the stairs.
His representative described it as “a scary morning”, and it was later determined that the fall was due to low blood pressure.
“I’d gone to get some hot milk because I felt ropey. On the way back upstairs, I just remember feeling really dizzy,” said Cowell. “Next thing I know someone was putting a neck brace on me and I had a terrible headache, which must have been from me hitting the stairs. I was worried at first that I’d done some real damage.”
It was a huge shock for Simon, who was lucky to escape without any serious injuries.
Start of a new healthy life
Following the accident, he met with a doctor who told him he had to change his diet and not consume red meat, wheat, dairy, gluten or sugar.
“I’m thinking, what about alcohol? That’s all I care about,” Cowell recalled in an interview with Extra. “And he said, ‘Maybe not quite as much as you had before’.”
Within 24 hours of meeting the doctor, Cowell had adapted to his new diet. It wasn’t as hard as he thought, and it has had a huge impact on his life.
“I can eat certain fruits, but not all fruits. You have to be careful because some fruit can have more sugar than a can of Coke,” Cowell told The Sun. “Once you get into a pattern I’ve found it quite enjoyable. It has helped me sleep and I wake up feeling less tired. I noticed a massive difference in how I felt in about a week.”
Sometimes, however, it’s been tough for Cowell to keep himself away from food he shouldn’t eat, especially when he’s with his son Eric, now six years old.
“The only difficult thing is when Eric orders a pizza. That’s the number one thing I miss,” Cowell said.
Simon Cowell – weight loss
Simon Cowell’s undergone an incredible health journey over the last couple of years. And the result is nothing less than incredible!
In just 12 months, Simon’s lost 56 pounds. And the COVID-19 pandemic – and its accompanying lockdown – hasn’t given him any excuse to pile the weight on again.
“I think I have dropped, since I started this diet a year ago, 60 pounds. I’m doing a bit of cooking. I’m exercising,” he told Extra, according to Hello Magazine. “Funny enough, more during this time as well, sticking to the diet.”
Simon Cowell was also sure to give some tips for others as to how to best stick to a healthy routine during the pandemic.
“Most importantly, occupy your mind,” he said. “You have to stick to a routine. Fortunately, with things like with Zoom, you stay in touch with the world, keep motivated, come up with ideas … I never get this time, normally.”
With the pandemic in full swing across the globe, people haven’t seen their family or been able to do all the fun things that they could before.
Simon Cowell – son Eric
In the end, it’s for the best, regardless of how boring it may seem. We all have to take care of ourselves in order to take care of others, especially those in at-risk groups.
Simon Cowell has been able to work from home, but more importantly, he’s been able to spend plenty of time with his son Eric and partner Lauren Silverman.
Even though times are tough, Eric’s been coping with the pandemic way better than Cowell expected.
“I was concerned how Eric was going to cope with all of this,” he told Extra. “He has been absolutely amazing. He is still able to do schoolwork, and now we are camping on the weekends in the garden.”
Simon Cowell has taken on a new healthy lifestyle and loves spending time with his family. Even though you can see him being harsh on the talent shows he’s in, we know he’s a wonderful person and family-man.
We wish him and his family all the luck in the future. Please, share this story on Facebook with friends and family!