Mark Feehily is a huge fan of the new format of "The X Factor" because Simon Cowell has found a way to make more than one star.
The 37-year-old singer's former group Westlife were signed by Cowell to his Syco record label and managed by "X Factor" judge Louis Walsh and he and the other guys - Shane Filan, Nicky Byrne and Kian Egan - were regular performers on the ITV talent show when they were together.
Mark has been watching the current series every week and thinks the changes implemented, such as the weekly prizes for the acts with the most votes, and the focus on original songs from finalists Rak-Su and Grace Davies has given the programme a real boost and he believes many acts will have chart success rather than just this weekend's winner.
Speaking exclusively to BANG Showbiz, he said: "One of the things I've loved about this season is that Simon has really embraced original songs and he's now using "The X Factor" to not just create one big star at the end of the show but allowing "The X Factor" to act as promotion for these talented acts which will get them in the charts. I think that's a really clever move and I really like that dynamic.
"I also really like the fact they've had prizes each week, there was a feeling that if you got kicked out when you were fourth or fifth it was a bit like, "See you later guys." Whereas now the fact that you've made the final gives you rewards, which is great for those guys."
Mark has returned to the music scene with his new festive album, which is titled "Christmas" and features a collection of classic Yule Tide favourites such as "Merry Christmas Baby", "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" and "Miss You Most (at Christmas Time)".
The Irish pop star sent Louis, 65, a copy of the LP when he finished it and he was delighted when the music mogul called him to tell him how much he loved it.
Mark said: "I sent Louis a copy of my album and he was on the phone to me telling me how great it is and how he'd forgotten how good I was and that was really nice to hear. He was all fired up about it, which is so nice because he's still powerful in the business and he still wants to help me."
Mark's new album "Christmas" is out now and "The X Factor" winner will be crowned this Sunday (03.12.17).