Emeli Sande splits from record label after struggling to live up to success of 2012 album Our Version Of Events

EMELI SANDE ruled the roost when her debut album went on to become 2012’s best-selling record.

But almost a decade on from Our Version Of Events hitting No1, the Scot has split from her record label after struggling to live up to its monumental success.

I have learned she has parted with EMI in a bid to escape the pressures of releasing music through a major label.

A music insider said: “Emeli and her label have decided to go their separate ways after ten years together.

“She had a great time and with their support she became a massive success story thanks to Our Version of Events.

“But her two follow-up albums haven’t had the same sales figures and it has been difficult for her.

“Emeli sat down with the label and decided now was the right time to do her own thing.

“She is hard at work on a new album. This has allowed her to take the pressure off and she is feeling very relaxed.”

I told last week how Westlife had also split from EMI.

Our Version Of Events spent ten weeks at No1 and 67 consecutive weeks in the Top Ten, a record for a female artist.

Announcing a hiatus from social media in December, she said: “I’m taking a break offline now to focus fully on finishing the next album and to prepare for when I can perform live for you again.

“I’ll see you on the other side with a whole new chapter of life, love and music to share!”

I hope this gives her the new lease of life she needs.

Aston: It's nuts being wrap star

With his backflips, snake hips and topless calendar pics, Aston Merrygold of JLS was the ultimate Noughties boy band heart-throb, never shy of stripping off while performing alongside bandmates Marvin Humes, Oritse Williams and JB Gill.

No surprise then that he says the weirdest part about becoming Robin on the wackiest show on the box, The Masked Singer, was that he was forced to cover up.

Aston, who finished third in Saturday’s final, told me: “I’ve been on stage my whole life trying to take clothes off, not clamp outfits on. It’s a bit nuts.

“But it was nice not tensing my abs all the time.”

Panellists Rita Ora, Mo Gilligan, Davina McCall and guest judge Nicola Roberts guessed Robin was Aston, despite him changing his stride to one like fighter Conor McGregor to try to throw the judges off the scent.

Aston said: “I was really kind of Conor McGregor, you know, swagger. It was outland-ish. It was fun.

“It took a lot of mental strain on you as well be- cause you need to really think about this character. You kind of get a bit paranoid because I needed to be ruffling the feathers a little bit.

“Anyone who could have tapped into my brain at that point would be like, ‘This guy’s f***ing nuts’, because just the thought processes were so out there.”

His bandmates weren’t fooled either, and Aston had to ignore their texts asking if it was him in the costume.

The singer, who has relaunched his solo career off the back of the show and has just released the single Overboard, added: “They did obviously message a few times and I was just like, ‘What you talking about? Like, guys, I don’t have time for this, the kids are running around’. I just kept batting it away.

“They would kind of go, ‘OK Ast, all right mate. Nice one. OK’.

“You can’t be working with people for ten-plus years and be friends for longer, then expect them not to know exactly what I sound like. They’ve heard it flippin’ every day.

“Who am I kidding? I just thought I was being     clever!”

Ashley a people person

Ashley Roberts is part of the hottest girl group there is, but even she didn’t stand a chance when it came to telly hunk Paul Mescal.

The Pussycat Dolls singer slid into his DMs last year after seeing him in TV’s Normal People.

Ashley, pictured heading for work at Heart radio in London yesterday, explained: “I did message him. I know this sounds silly and wasn’t for any intention than to admire his work.

“After Normal People first aired I messaged him, ‘Wow that was amazing’.

“And he was like, ‘Oh thank you’. He was sweet. This was in the early days.

“I feel like he’s blown up too much now, I don’t think he’d respond. I think I was one of the first ones to get into the show.”

Katy is all heart

Love was in the air on Valentine’s Day with Katy Perry becoming the Queen Of Hearts.

The I Kissed A Girl singer, engaged to actor Orlando Bloom, dressed up as the Alice In Wonderland character for her appearance on reality show American Idol.

Rapper Cardi B appeared to recreate her wedding, posting a snap of her in a white dress and her rapper husband Offset, commenting: “Let’s make it last forever.”

Shawn Mendes kissed girlfriend Camila Cabello’s feet in his playful tribute, while Kendall Jenner went public with her new boyfriend, basketball player Devin Booker.

Single Lizzo showed what men who don’t want her can kiss . . .

Killer surgery

Killers frontman Brandon Flowers needs surgery before he can perform again after a horror bike crash.

He said: “I went over the handlebars. I have a torn right shoulder so I am going under the knife in a couple of weeks to get that taken care off. Maybe one day I will play golf again. I will be in a sling for six weeks.”

In a new chat the Mr Brightside singer told his Instagram followers how he feared for the band’s May gig in Doncaster. He said: “We hope May happens. It’s not looking great.”

But there is new music on the way. He went on: “I have a seven-minute song about a slot technician with a gambling problem. It’s good. One day you will hear it.

“Making music has become a part of our life now as this is what we get to do. You look at people who have lasted. We are on our seventh record.

“We will be back live as soon as we can.”

Everybody Dance

Peter Andre, Rick Astley and Love Islander Dr Alex are among the 30,000 who have taken on the TikTok challenge to boogie to a new version of Chic’s Everybody Dance.

That's a wrap darling!

Harry Styles and Florence Pugh’s new film Don’t Worry Darling has finished filming and the cast look pretty happy.

The former 1D singer cosied up to his new girlfriend, the movie’s director Olivia Wilde, as they wore matching hoodies.

Harry and Florence, the leads in the psychological thriller set in the Fifties, gave the crew presents and flowers as a thank you.

I told you how Harry and Olivia’s ex Jason Sudeikis are to film in the same studio in the UK later this year.

Wonder if it will be all smiles after that?

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