Jay-Z keen on signing Arthur to label
Jay-Z wants to sign James Arthur to his management company Roc Nation.
While the 24-year-old singer – who won 'The X Factor' on Sunday - is contracted to Simon Cowell's Syco label to make his first album, the '99 Problems' hitmaker is prepared to fork out millions to get him out of his contract because he believes the 'Impossible' star can crack the US.
A source told the Daily Star newspaper: “Jay-Z is a keen spotter of British talent and is already involved with Rita Ora, K Koke and worked with Tinchy Stryder and Sugababes too.
“He is convinced James can follow One Direction’s lead and break into the American market.
“Jay knows what kind of music James should be making and that’s gritty and edgy.
“He feels his team could master an album of worldwide hits.”
But James was delighted to receive a phone call from Simon yesterday when the music mogul rang to congratulate him on his 'X Factor' triumph, even if the Middlesbrough-born star initially thought it was his friends playing a trick on him.
He told MailOnline: "I spoke to Simon Cowell today. I thought it was a prank originally. He said I was a credit to the show and he really respects what I do and that he'd love me to stay true to myself and carry on doing what I'm doing.
"I'd love Simon Cowell to have an input in my album, he's the biggest person in the music industry and I value his input and opinions. But I will ultimately be the person who decides what goes out there and I'll have to be proud of it."
James – who is contracted to Quest management, which looks after the 'X Factor' acts – looks set to sell more copies of his debut single 'Impossible', which is available to buy on CD today, than any other winner in the ITV1 show's history after shipping 187,000 copies in just 24 hours.
Last year's winners Little Mix had only sold 69,000 copies of their debut single 'Cannonball' at the same stage of its opening week.