Charlie Simpson has been writing his solo record since he was seven.

The ‘Down Down Down’ hitmaker has been stockpiling a number of songs for his first solo record since he first started to learn music and until he had enough “life experience” to do them justice.

The 26-year-old singer and guitarist told BANG Showbiz: “I’ve been writing a few of these songs since I first picked up an acoustic when I was seven.

“Songs of this nature I used to think it was right for me to hold off, because I think I’ve had a decent amount of life experience now and I think that lends itself well to the lyrics, and if I’d written this when I was 15 years old it would have been very different.

“I think I’m at the point in my life now where I was ready to write a record like this.”

Charlie – who is also the lead singer of metal band Fightstar, who are currently on a break – also said people shouldn’t be surprised by the new Americana inspired sound of the record, as the influences behind it have always been with him, just less apparent.

He added: “I’ve always loved Elliot Smith, Jeff Buckley and while I’ve been in a band I’ve never had an outlet to play it.

“I always knew that when I did my own record, a solo record, it would have a different sound, but this is stuff I’ve been listening to since I was 11 years old, I’ve just never had an outlet for it before.”

Charlie Simpson will take part in the Cadbury Spots v Stripes Minute To Win It festival tour at Boardmasters in Newquay on 12th August. The ITV2 game show Minute To Win IT, in association with Cadbury Spots v Stripes hits screens in the Autumn.