Harry Edward Styles, widely known as Harry Styles, was the person behind the choosing of the name One Direction when he was put together with Niall Horan, Liam Payne, Zayn Malik and Lois Tomlinson by Simon Cowell to form a singing group. He auditioned for the British show "The X Factor" in 2010, singing a rendition of Stevie Wonder's "Isn't She Lovely", but was sent home before finals. After that, he was re-called and placed in the new group act for the rest of the competition. The boys finished in the third place and were immediately signed to Syco music label which is owned by Simon Cowell.
Harry's journey to stardom began when he and fellow band mates released their first single "What Makes You Beautiful" in September 2011. The massive success of the song helped launch One Direction's fame worldwide. Their debut album "Up All Night", which was released later that year, successfully hit No. 1 on the charts in Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States. The band's sophomore album "Take Me Home" (2012) and its follow-up "Midnight Memories" (2013) were well received and sold out in the market. By that time, Harry and the rest of the band already established a name in the showbiz with numerous tour dates worldwide.
Born on February 1, 1994, Harry was the youngest in One Direction and often referred to as "the flirt." Being romantically linked to a number of famous ladies, he once dated much older TV presenter Caroline Flack, whom he met during "The X Factor". After that, he began dating a string of A-listers, ranging from Taylor Swift to Kendall Jenner. Being into singing since he was a kid, Harry credited Elvis Presley and The Beatles as his musical influences. During his school years, he used to serve as lead singer for band White Eskimo which he formed with some friends.
One Direction announced in March 2016 they're taking hiatus to pursue its members' solo careers. Styles later signed a record deal as a solo artist with Columbia Records in June 2016. Since then, he has been active writing songs, both for his own solo project and other artists like Ariana Grande and Michael Buble. Amid his preparation for his solo debut album, he filmed Christopher Nolan's action-thriller film "Dunkirk". The World War II-inspired film marked Styles' acting debut in which he played alongside renowned actors like Tom Hardy, Mark Rylance and Cillian Murphy.
In March 2017, Styles announced his debut solo single titled "Sign of the Times" along with its cover art on Instagram. The track was released on April 7. Styles then made his debut TV performance on April 15 by performing two songs "Sign of the Times" and "Ever Since New York" off his upcoming album on comedy sketch show "Saturday Night Live". Following his debut television performance, Styles revealed the track list and the cover art of the forthcoming project. The album features ten tracks and will be released on May 12, 2017.
Harry later announced that his debut solo album would be titled after his name, before finally releasing it on May 12 as promised. The album was both commercially and critically successful, as it debuted at No. 1 on Billboard 200 chart with 230,000 equivalent album units. It was also included in several publications' list of the best albums of 2017, and was certified platinum in several countries including the U.S., Australia and Canada.
Besides launching his solo music career, Harry also made his film debut through 2017's "Dunkirk", in which he played a British soldier named Alex who was a part of the Dunkirk evacuation in World War II. The singer was praised for his performance in the movie. Harry got even busier after that. While hitting the road in support of his self-titled album, he also appeared in BBC One's TV special "Harry Styles at the BBC" and guest hosted "The Late Late Show with James Corden" in December.
While Harry was kept busy with his tour, he still took the time to team up with Jack Antonoff and Ilsey Juber to co-write "Alfie's Song (Not So Typical Love Song)" for Bleachers. The song served as the soundtrack to "Love, Simon". Harry also served as an executive producer for sitcom "Happy Together" and showed his support to various causes and social movements. In 2018, he released T-shirts with the slogan "Treat People with Kindness" in a rainbow print to celebrate Pride Month, with all proceeds benefiting GLSEN, which works to end discrimination, harassment and bullying based on sexual orientation.
2018 also saw Harry wrapping his world tour "Harry Styles: Live on Tour" in July, before he began to focus on working on his sophomore album. Its first single, "Lights Up", was released in October 2019, sparking speculation that Harry might come out as bisexual due to its lyrics that read, "Lights up and they know who you are. I'm not ever going back." While the rumors has never been confirmed, the song itself debuted at No. 17 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart.