“Not The 1975”: Knox tried to shoot his shot and ended up with his first radio hit


After finding viral success in 2023 with his song “Sneakers,” singer/songwriter Knox has his first radio hit with “Not The 1975,” which describes a scenario in which a girl blows a guy off by telling him he’ll never be as good as that British band. Knox says the song was inspired by something a girl actually said to him in real life.

“Long story short, I was telling someone I had a record deal — basically, I was trying to be cooler than I am,” he tells ABC Audio. “And their exact quote was, ‘That’s awesome. But you’re never going to be Matty Healy‘” — Healy, of course, being the lead singer of The 1975.

Rather than being offended, Knox says, “I’m a huge 1975 fan. Like, huge. And, I thought that was absolutely hilarious. I thought that was so funny and such a way to get, y’know, turned down. And, the very next morning, I just woke up … and the one thing on my mind was just, “She said, ‘I like your confidence, but you’re not the 1975."”

So, Knox says he brought that line to his best friend and told him, “Whatever this is, could be a whole song.”  And that song, he explains, turned into “a super-exaggerated version of what actually happened.” They also threw in plenty of references to The 1975 songs, like “Oh Caroline,” “Chocolate” and “Looking for Somebody (To Love).”

Knox, who suspected the song could be a hit, even has the moment of the song’s creation preserved for posterity.

He laughs, “I still have the original video that I took that morning when I woke up … of me playing it on guitar when I came up with it, and it was stuck in my head ’cause I didn’t want to forget it!” 

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