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Fifth Harmony to Syco/Epic

WILL LIGHTNING STRIKE TWICE? Fifth Harmony has become the third X Factor act from the show’s recently completed second season to snag a record deal, following winner Tate Stevens (Syco/RCA Nashville; see 1/15 item and photo)  and fourth-place finisher Emblem3 (Syco/Columbia). The five-member girl group, which was put together during boot camp (like Syco/Columbia's One Direction) and finished third (also like 1D), will be on Syco/Epic. The L.A. Times points out that the girls struggled to find their footing and were often criticized by the judges, including L.A. Reid, who said that despite their name there was no harmony within them. But the Epic leader has obviously come around, as the group quickly evolved under Simon Cowell’s tutelage. “I knew from the girls’ first performance at judges’ homes in Miami that we’d done the right thing. The chemistry between the Fifth Harmony girls both on and off stage is fantastic," Simon said in a statement. "They are really great girls, who have become best friends. They’re great fun to be around and most importantly, they are all incredibly talented.” Fifth Harmony’s debut album will be executive produced by Julian Bunetta, whose discography includes Flo Rida, Natasha Bedingfield, Leona Lewis and, yup, One Direction. (1/18a)

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