McFly star Danny Jones backs Sam Fender and Harry Styles for Mercury prize

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McFly star Danny Jones has backed Sam Fender and Harry Styles to take home his year’s Mercury prize following the announcement of the shortlist.

Singer-songwriter Fender has been nominated for his number one album Seventeen Going Under while former One Direction star turned solo artist Styles has received a nod for his third solo studio album Harry’s House.

The singers are among 10 of the 12 acts in the running for the prestigious award, which recognises the best British album of the year, who are first-time nominees.

Speaking on BBC’s The One Show, McFly singer and guitarist Jones said he hopes Fender’s chances of winning are “pretty high”.

He added: “He’s done some amazing things recently. And for me, representing guitar music in a commercial kind of environment is really good for us as well, he’s helping us out.

“I speak to him on social sometimes and just big him up and I believed in him from the start and it’s just so nice to see him do so well and play huge shows.”

He recalled how Fender brought his Brit award for best rock alternative act back to his local pub to celebrate, which he said “resonated” with him as he also started in pubs and open-mic nights.

Following the shortlist announcement, Fender told BBC Radio 6 that he was “chuffed” and “absolutely freaking out” after securing his first Mercury Prize nomination.

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Sam Fender (Jane Barlow/PA)

Jones, who is also a coach on The Voice Kids, said that he also loved Styles as well, adding: “I’ve worked with Harry in the past and he’s a great guy so any of those two I’d be.”

Styles’ album Harry’s House has already enjoyed a string of success since its release in May, having just earned its sixth week at number one on the UK album charts and now boasts more weeks atop the chart than all of One Direction’s albums combined.

Also among the nominees are Leeds-based rock group Yard Act for their debut studio album The Overload and Isle of Wight band Wet Leg have also been nominated for their self-titled number one album.

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Harry Styles (Ian West/PA)

Little Simz, who won best new artist at the Brit awards, secured another Mercury prize nomination this year for Sometimes I Might Be Introvert – having featured in the 2019 shortlist for her album Grey Area.

Bafta-nominated actress Jessie Buckley, who recently won an Olivier award for best actress following her role as Sally Bowles in Cabaret, also features on the list for her debut album For All Our Days That Tear The Heart with Bernard Butler.

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