JAHMENE Douglas was mobbed by besotted fans on his first performance back in his hometown since taking second place on the X Factor, but only one woman mattered on stage – his mum.
The Asda worker, accompanied by a large contingent of family and friends, brought doting Mandy Thomas on stage for a soaring rendition of Robbie Williams’ Angels.
Female fans had bagged places at the front of the stage several hours before he turned up at Bushwackers and Sin nightclub dressed in a sharp black suit.
He kicked off with Etta James’ hit At Last, and made his way through songs including Whitney Houston’s My Love Is Your Love before performing the serenade.
Unlike other X Factor stars to perform at the town centre club, the 21-year-old passed by the chance to enjoy a few free beers and instead sipped herbal tea with manuka honey before his performance.
He said he was looking to the future after being signed by Sony – despite an exhausting and emotional ride on the ITV1 show, which ended with James Arthur taking the top spot.
“It feels like a blessing that I’m able to have this platform and to come back home and find people are behind me 100 per cent,” he said.
“Without the lows you can’t really appreciate the highs and I’ve left the show feeling happy. I’m actually happy I came second because it’s pushed me more.”
The former New College student enjoyed Christmas Day in Swindon, spending more on presents than he has done in the entire course of his life to date.
But despite enjoying the riches of fame, including being given a minder to accompany him on trips to the shops, he promised to stick to his principles.
“I’ve got a lot of things planned and there will definitely be an album,” he said.
“I’m going to stay true to myself and it will be about real music, not synthetic backing tracks and repetitive beats. “Children are brought up on music with swear words and what someone will to do to this or that woman. I was brought up on artists like Stevie Wonder and I want my music to be a positive, influential and inspirational movement.”
Jahmene also confirmed he was still single despite his army of female fans, who chanted his name and mobbed him for photos at the gig. “Love isn’t something you go chasing,” he said. “It’s something that finds you, and I’m waiting to be found.”
But in case he fancies jacking it all in there is still a place for him back on chilled produce at Asda. The supermarket giant confirmed yesterday he has until January 31 to make a decision on his career break at its store in Haydon.