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Last Updated: Tuesday, 31 January 2006, 10:08 GMT
X Factor's Chico gets record deal
Chico lived in Morocco before moving to Crawley in West Sussex
Former X Factor contestant Chico Slimani has signed a record deal with Sony BMG.

The ex-goatherd and stripper will release his debut single It's Chico Time next month.

Slimani's dancing impressed X Factor judges but he failed to reach the final of the ITV talent show.

He is taking part in a nationwide X Factor tour, which begins in Newcastle next month. "The whole thing has been unbelievable," the 34-year-old said.

Dance troupe

Slimani lived in Morocco before moving to Crawley in West Sussex when he was 14.

He trained as a hairdresser and worked as an electrical engineer before joining exotic dance troupe Extreme Force, subsequently auditioning for The X Factor.

Despite Slimani's popularity with viewers he failed to become a finalist in the series, won by singer Shayne Ward in December.

Slimani had originally planned to release his single, which he performed during the talent show, before Christmas.

"I'm absolutely loving every minute of it, and looking forward to releasing the single at last," he added.

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