Entertainment Music

Tuesday 2 September 2014

I can’t get into clubs says little rapper with big Voice dreams

Singer Jamie Hartigan, who stands at 4ft 11”, hopes his luck will change after he appears on The Voice of Ireland this weekend

By Ken Sweeney Entertainment Editor

Published 10/01/2014 | 07:13

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Rapper Jamie Hartigan with Kathryn Thomas and pals  Roisin Prendergast (hat) and Samantha Kelly.
Rapper Jamie Hartigan with Kathryn Thomas and pals Roisin Prendergast (hat) and Samantha Kelly.

HE is the little man with the big Voice.

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But singer Jamie Hartigan has said he cannot get into nightclubs in his home city of Limerick due to his size.

The 23-year-old – who stands at 4' 11” – hopes all that will change after he appears on The Voice Of Ireland this weekend.

“I've only been in a nightclub four times in my whole life because they think I look underage,” Jamie said.

“I can't get in anywhere even though I have got a passport. It's got that bad, I have gone to solicitors about it.”

His small stature is a result of a number of serious illnesses including Silver Russell Syndrome, pulmonary hypertension and dwarfism.

And Jamie said that he has suffered discrimination because of his size.

“The minute these bouncers see me in the queue they start laughing. By the time I get to the door, they come out with all sorts of excuses, telling me I'm too drunk or I'm not a member,” he said.

“It just means I don't have a social life.”

The brave Munster man is also awaiting a heart and lung operation due to a hole in his heart. “I attended the Harefield Hospital in the UK, twice a year, for the first 15 years of my life,” he said.

“It may seem like a lot to deal with but I've been pretty lucky in terms of my health.”

However, he has vowed this won't stop him pursuing his dream of becoming a rapper, releasing videos on his own YouTube channel.

And he decided The Voice of Ireland with its blind audition process offered him the best hope of launching a rapping career.

“I can't tell you what happened when I auditioned for The Voice Of Ireland but the nerves and wave of emotion that went through me before my turn came was incredible. I really felt it was my only chance,” he said.

“I might not be able to get into any nightclubs but the streets of Limerick are full of friends and they're great people,” he added.

Auditions

He was joined at auditions by friends Roisin Prendergast and Samantha Kelly.

Jamie, who finished joint third in the Mr Limerick competition in 2008, said he doesn't want pity but a chance to pursue his music career.

The Voice of Ireland Blind Auditions is on Sunday at 6.30pm on RTE One.

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