In a recent interview with Billboard, Cowell opened up about how he's thrilled to see the members — Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, Niall Horan, Liam Payne, and Zayn Malik — doing so well in their individual careers after helping them become a massive pop sensation on The X Factor UK in 2010. Though he said he keeps in touch with most of the group, Cowell noted that he is closest with Tomlinson, whose "Back To You" debut single dropped in July.
"Louis and I, you know, we've got this very close bond," he told Billboard. "When we heard about this current record, I remember calling him and going, 'Louis, this record is special' — and I could not be happier. Actually, with all the boys, if I'm being honest with you. They've worked for this. But yeah, you do feel a little bit like a proud dad when you see all five of them doing well now."
This isn't the first time we've seen Cowell flaunt his sweeter side this summer. In June, Cowell released a powerful rendition of Simon & Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Water" to benefit the victims of the horrible fire that killed at least 79 people at Grenfell Tower. Within a day, the single raised over $220,000 and broke a record for having the largest opening day with 120,000 sales.
The track featured performances from over 5o artists, including Payne, Tomlinson, The Who's Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrev, Queen's Brian May, Rita Ora, and James Blunt. You can watch the moving music video below.
It seems that good will is in the air lately. Earlier this month, Tomlinson announced that he and Malik were finally friends again after the band's rough falling out.
"You know, we got back in touch with each other and kind of cleared the air and talked everything through, so we're mates again, I suppose," Tomlinson said during a radio interview with Andy Cohen. "It takes time, but it was nice that we had an opportunity to clear the air and be adults about it."
Here's hoping that the rest of the 1D men can bury the hatchet.