But after the Out of Control Tour came X Factor and then Record company folk began asking if she was interested in Will.I.Am’s offer and so she decided to take some time out to work with him in the studio. ‘The way we work with Girls Aloud is that we’ll go into the vocal booth and do our lines on a track that’s already almost completed. With Will I was seeing music being made right from the ground up. He’d ask my opinion on the beats and the words. He’d send me off to write hooks.’
The recording process gathered momentum after Will and Cheryl had alighted on the gob-stopping robo-pop R&B duet 3 Words that will form the centrepiece of Cheryl Cole, solo. ‘I still can’t quite believe that that song is mine,’ says Cheryl now, justifiably chuffed with the results; a lean sound that straddles an imaginary dancefloor somewhere between Ibiza and South Beach, Miami and welds it to a lyric that sounds as if it were crafted from the finer end of a Geordie text message.'
She says, ‘Right from the start with this I knew what I wouldn’t sing. If I heard a thumping dance beat or a phrase I wouldn’t use, it’d go. If I was going to make a solo record it had to be a record that I’d play in the house. I love what the Girls do. I love the quirkiness and I love that it is our sound. But this time it had to be personal.’