Leona Lewis has revealed she chose to leave Simon Cowell’s record label because he wanted her to do an album of covers.

The 30-year-old singer won The X Factor in 2006 and went on to release four albums with Syco. But they parted ways last year and it was reported that she had become the latest in a long line of X Factor winners to be dumped by Simon.

But Leona told Sirius XM host Larry Flick it was her decision.

Leona Lewis

Leona Lewis (Joe Giddens/PA)


She said: “I felt like I just needed to move on. We had differences. The label wanted me to do an album of covers, and I just felt like I had not gotten to the point where I wanted to do that.

“I’d already done a Christmas album and done a lot of covers and had so much fun with it, then I was ready to do my own album, a studio album again.

“That opportunity wasn’t there, so I decided to leave and do a record myself. I literally didn’t know what I was going to do, who I was going to get signed to, or what was going to happen.”

The Bleeding Love singer has collaborated on a new album of original songs with German music producer Toby Gad, who has worked with Beyonce, Fergie, Nicole Scherzinger and Selena Gomez. She has also signed a new record deal with Island Records in the UK and Def Jam in the US.

The album, called I Am, will be released globally in September.