I’ll be the first to admit, when I first heard Lewis Capaldi singing Someone You Loved in his soulful, baritone voice, I wasn’t expecting the man behind the song to be a 22-year-old Glaswegian who has a whole Instagram highlight section dedicated to unclogging his toilet.
But to be honest, as soon as I learned that information, I liked him even more.
The singer has been a rising star over the past few months, with Someone You Loved reaching number one in the UK in March, and still continuing its streak in the top spot seven weeks later. He recently announced his UK arena tour, which will kick off in Manchester in March 2020 before heading to Glasgow, Dublin, Cardiff and London.
The official music video for his number one hit has 13,396,281 million views on YouTube at the time of writing (April 18), and Capaldi has racked up over a million followers on Instagram – but I think everyone with an Instagram account should let their feeds be blessed with his content.
You see, the 22-year-old’s approach to fame is extremely refreshing. It would be easy for me to say he’s ‘down to earth’ and ‘relatable’, but thanks to social media a lot of stars try to come across that way nowadays.
But Capaldi isn’t relatable because he likes pizza or goes to the shop with no make-up on – he’s relatable because he treats fame as if he’s not famous, and almost every celebrity-style thing that happens to him seems to genuinely take him by surprise.
He shows off about reaching certain milestones, and he’s unapologetic about being who he is. Often people tailor their social media to show off certain aspects of their life and hide the ones that won’t get as many likes.
But Capaldi has proved that even the version of you that sings into a hairbrush in front of the mirror is something to celebrate, and I think we could all learn a positive lesson from that.
People seem to like him even more because he shares whatever the hell he likes. They like him so much, in fact, that they came together to bestow upon Capaldi what could be considered the highest possible honour in the online world.
They turned him into a meme:
— Vanessa Diana (@Vanessa09720207) April 10, 2019
— betty (@nightinthepark) April 16, 2019
Any celebrity with a social media account will, as part of the job description, influence other people. Fans will look up to them, be inspired by them, and want to do what they do.
A lot of Instagram’s influencers, from one-time reality TV stars to big names like Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner, often show off unrealistic aspects of life.
Their profiles are made up of perfect figures, brand promotion and expensive events, and even if it’s not like that ‘behind the scenes’, having to see people living these glamorous lives can have a harmful affect on anyone who isn’t at their level, potentially making them feel less attractive, less successful, and less worthy on the whole.
Of course, there are some stars, like social media king Ryan Reynolds, who do take themselves less seriously, and that shouldn’t be overlooked. But as soon as Capaldi posted a series of videos documenting the exact day he became classed as a ‘celeb’, the 22-year-old proved he was on a whole other, much more accessible, level.
By sharing even the most grotesque and unfortunate details about his life, the singer is projecting a much healthier message. He promotes honesty, unapologetic confidence in being yourself, and loving what you do, and that’s the kind of influence everyone needs.
Because even celebrities sometimes have to use nasal decongestants:
Although, that’s not to say Capaldi doesn’t still go where the money is. He chose to follow in Kim K’s footsteps when it came to promoting his album, and I can’t say I blame him.
It’s a very good look:
However, while Capaldi is clearly more than happy to show his face in front of the camera, he’s proved he can step back when it counts.
The music video for Capaldi’s biggest hit could have been the perfect opportunity for him to show off on screen and have people put a face to a name, but the singer doesn’t even appear in Someone You Loved. Instead, the video tells a poignant and emotional story which promotes organ donation for the charity Live Life Give Life.
Starring Capaldi’s distant relative and former Doctor Who star Peter Capaldi, the music video depicts a connection between two families, who have been brought together through organ donation.
According to Celeb Mix, Lewis explained he decided to focus on organ donation after his mum told him about Live Life Give Life.
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Repost @lewiscapaldi “So proud to finally be able to show you all the video for Someone You Loved!! ❤️ Watch full video in bio! honour to work with Peter Capaldi & the incredible @livelifegivelifeuk & @save9lives who are doing incredible things to raise the awareness of just how important organ donation is, massive love to @jimlynskey who has been a fan of all of the tunes & is on the donor list himself, absolutely class boy & proper inspiration. v v proud of this! X” Thank you @lewiscapaldi for using your platform to raise awareness for organ donation and choosing to support our cause! Such a moving an incredible tribute. Special thanks to #PeterCapaldi for his amazing performance and @directorbeast for this beautiful work. We are so proud to be a part of it.
I wanted to do something a bit different to what I had before and try [to] take the opportunity to raise awareness for something that I thought was deserving.
Coincidentally, while working on the video, I received a message from a fan of my music, Jim, who is currently on the organ transplant list himself. For me, this solidified how important it is to try and raise awareness for this subject in order to help Jim and the many others just like him.
Although he was still in the process of securing his success, Capaldi turned the attention away from himself and used the platform available to him to to help others. Admittedly, not all of us will be able to produce a number one hit song and literally promote saving lives, but the act of choosing others over himself is in itself an inspirational move.
The fact his mum told him about the charity suggests he was happy to collaborate off his own back, and in comparison to some influencers out there, who only promote brands when they’ve been sent an abundance of free products, Capaldi has proven himself an incredible role model in terms of helping others.
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SOMEONE YOU LOVED IS NUMBER 3 IN THE UK CHARTS 😭❤️ To celebrate I thought it’d be funny to take some pictures sitting on my seat backwards cause I thought oh this will be silly and funny but I didn’t mean to absolutely SMOKE THE CAMERA🔥 if anyone is selling a camera pls get in touch cause my photographers camera caught fire immediately after these were taken 📸 ALSO GOT A GOLD DISC FOR SOMEONE YOU LOVED IN NORWAY LOVE YA 🇳🇴 ❤️x
The announcement of his tour only served to emphasise that point, as the singer introduced a unique fan initiative called LIVELIVE, which is set up for those who experience anxiety, panic or further emotional difficulties and have concerns about attending the shows.
All proceeds from an additional 50p charge for each ticket sale goes solely towards providing a dedicated team at each venue who are expertly trained and qualified in assisting fans with panic, anxiety or any other concerns they may have.
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ACTUALLY CAN’T BELIEVE I’M SAYING THIS!… I’M DOING A UK & IRELAND ARENA TOUR!!!! 😭🕺🏻to be putting these size of shows on sale before my album is even out is genuinely something i can’t comprehend! thank u all so much for make this possible!! If ya pre-order the album now on CD, Vinyl or Cassette (or have done already) from the official shop (link in bio) before 4PM on Tuesday you’ll get a special pre-sale code on Tues night to use for the limited pre-sale on Weds morning!!!!! ❤️ WHO IS COMING? Going to be the best week of my life! X also v v excited to announce something I’ve been working on for a while… LIVELIVE… get lots of messages from some of u who would love to come to shows but might not feel able to because of anxiety or perhaps afraid of a panic attack during the show. i really wanted to put something in place to help all of u that might feel like that, feel comfortable and offer as much support as I can so u don’t have to miss out, you’ve all made this happen & don’t want anyone to have to miss out! swipe left to read more ❤️🕺🏻 XOX
Speaking about the initiative, Capaldi said:
I always get tonnes of messages from people online who have said they want to come to my shows but can’t because they’re struggling massively with anxiety or are just generally afraid they will have a panic attack during the show.
I really wanted to put something in place to help those people feel comfortable and offer them support to allow them to experience the shows.
I hate to feel that anyone’s anxiety is making them miss out on anything they want to do and LIVELIVE is my attempt at helping make these shows enjoyable for as many of those people who have been supporting this journey for me!
The LIVELIVE plan shows the singer’s concern and care for his fans; he wants to make sure everyone enjoys the experience equally, projecting a good message about being adaptable and considerate of others.
I think it helps that he’s still relatively new in the world of fame; before too long he might get wrapped up in a more selfish, glamorous world, where his agent stops him sharing videos about his pubes for publicity reasons. The Somebody You Loved singer even admitted himself things would change when he got to a million followers.
In a lengthy Instagram story, he described some of the things he’d do when he reached the milestone, saying:
The first thing I’m gonna do when I hit a million followers is buy a G Wagon. That’s it, no more cutting about in my mum’s Ford Fiesta. I’m gonna buy a G Wagon and that’s that.
Unfortunately, Capaldi quickly realised G Wagons are expensive, ‘even on finance’, and decided to go for a Golf instead. I imagine a lot of optimistic teens eagerly awaiting their first paycheck can relate to that one.
He openly stated he’d no longer be ‘regular’ when he hit a million followers, but we’re now at 1.2 million, and he’s still getting excited over billboards of himself and sharing pictures of his extensive range of glasses.
Hopefully the fame will never get to his head, because right now, I think Capaldi is the best celebrity out there. I highly encourage everyone to realise there’s not that much worth in a well-filtered selfie or perfectly timed boomerangs, because the singer has proved people will still love you, possibly even more than before, when you share the more honest parts of life.
That’s not to say all your posts now have to be about clogging the toilet, but you do you, and do it proudly!
If you have a story you want to tell, send it to [email protected]
Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.