Irish Voice UK star Sharon Murphy reveals painful childhood behind beautiful voice
Sharon Murphy blew the coaches and audience away on Saturday night's 'The Voice UK' when she gave a haunting rendition of 'Forever Young'.
The 52 year old singer/songwriter moved Tom Jones to tears and both he and Ricky Wilson turned their chairs to get her on their teams.
On the show Tom commented, "I think there is something that happens when you get older and experience from life. If you can express it through your voice then you need to have lived a while and that is what I am getting from you. I don’t think a young girl could sing like you sing. They haven’t lived long enough.”
Prior to her performance Sharon had revealed that she had grown up in an orphanage in Clifden, Co Galway and that her childhood was a difficult one.
“It was quite a painful place. Not knowing who my family is made me feel isolated ad lonely. As a black Irish I did experience at times being treated differently. It was scary but it was family and it was home. It’s what I knew.
"As a singer songwriter I use my personal experience through music and it has been a real solace for me. It has been a healer.”
Speaking to the Irish Sun, she further described her time at the orphanage as "intense" and said, "It was not a nice place. The ones that were in charge of us were very cruel."
"I came up against problems because I was black; someone else came up against problems because they were fat. There were always issues. Whatever made you different was used to hurt."
Sharon revealed she took comfort in the fact that she spent the first 11 months of her life with her birth mother before she was given up for adoption.
"I was about 11 months old, which was unusual for a black child with a white mother. There was usually a stigma, even more so if the child was black."
She said she had tried to trace her birth mother but was met with "closed doors" and has never met her sister who she says is five years older than her.
Sharon revealed she was very nervous before her performance on Saturday night's show, "Oh yeah. Shocking. I was nervous, very very nervous - I was surprised that it hit me that hard."
Both Tom Jones, who had been moved to tears, and Ricky Wilson turned their chairs for her and she ultimately went to Team Tom.
"I was relieved I moved somebody to be honest. That someone turned."
Will.i.am said she had a "magical gift", adding "I'm so happy this show has someone as wonderful as you are."
Rita Ora said, "Before I let them two fight over you I have to say I was truly mesmerised. It was like you put a spell on me. I think you have a lot to give!”
Tom Jones said, "You touched me. You came through to me. You hit me in the heart. It cuts right through to my heart. You just did that for me."
He continued, "I think there is something that happens when you get older and experience from life. If you can express it through your voice then you need to have lived a while and that is what I am getting from you. I don’t think a young girl could sing like you sing. They haven’t lived long enough.”
Ricky said her performance was "marvellous and incredible" but Sharon chose to join Team Tom. Ricky conceded it was the right decision for Sharon.