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Niall Horan Reacts to ‘Flicker’ Debuting at No. 1 and Tying The Beatles’ Record: ‘It’s Hard to Put in Words’

Niall Horan spoke with Billboard's Kevan Kenney on the red carpet at last night's (Nov. 8) Country Music Association Awards in Nashville, Tenn.

Niall Horan attended the Country Music Association Awards Wednesday night (Nov. 8) to accompany Maren Morris on stage for their collaboration “Seeing Blind,” but before the performance, Billboard had to congratulate him for his latest major achievement: debuting at NO. 1 on the Billboard 200 with Flicker.

“Thank you very much,” the 24-year-old Irishman said on the red carpet. “That’s all you want to hear. When you write somethin’, you wanna hear No. 1 on the Billboard top 200, and that’s the news I got.”

Horan divulged that when he first heard that his debut solo album, Flicker (Oct. 20), had reached No. 1, he was in Philadelphia for his Flicker Sessions Tour, and about 45 minutes from going on stage.

“My manager just came up to me and said — he’s quite a relaxed guy — he just came up to me and was like, ‘It’s official,'” Horan remembered. “I knew that we were a little bit ahead, but it’s not over ’till it’s over,” Horan said. “But just pure excitement, and the show that night was just a different level because I was so excited about it.” 

With his No. 1 debut, Horan helped One Direction tie The Beatles as the only group with three members to go No. 1 as solo artists. “It’s a pretty cool stat to be able to read,” Horan said of the feat, between grins. “The Beatles are The Beatles. We just happen to be another band who had three members or whatever, but to read something like that, it’s unbelievable. It’s hard to really put into words how to even react to that.”

Horan’s excitement translated in his performance with Morris as they live debuted “Seeing Blind,” with the singer-songwriter also accompanying her on guitar for her latest single “I Could Use a Love Song.”

Watch Horan’s full red carpet interview above.