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What's new Elly? Knocknagree singer shines on Voice UK


Anyone who has seen London-based Knocknagree native Elly O'Keeffe perform live on the stage will know what a truly talented singer and songwriter she is.

They will also not be surprised at the manner in which she wowed judges and the watching public when she performed her version of Leon Bridges' song 'River'  in last Saturday nights 'blind audition' on The Voice UK - in fact, to them it was most definitely not unusual.

Prior to the audition the 31-year-old teacher posted on social media asking her followers to "wish me luck" adding "I hope I get a turn!!". 

As she walked onto the stage Elly could be heard over the audience saying "I'm very excited about being given the opportunity to go out and sing this great song, to do the best version I can do, just to get that turn."

As it turned out she need not have worried, with three of the judges, Tom Jones, Olly Murs and Meghan Trainor, clearly impressed with Elly's spellbinding performance, pressing their red buttons and swivelling around to face her.

They then went toe-to-toe for the right to become her mentor for the remainder of the series. 

The veteran Welsh warbler, who has been lined up to play Live at the Marquee in Cork during the summer, led the judges pitches after Elly was given a rousing reception by the studio audience that brought tears to her father's eyes as he watched on from the side of the stage, with her mother Joan and sister Joanne.

"We all think that you've something special and we love what you do and you're coming through loud and clear," said Sir Tom. 

"If you came with me I would do the best that I can for you," he added. 

Clearly flattered by the attention of the three judges, Elly decided to go with Jones. 

"Honestly, sticking to the gut, I'm going to go with Tom," she said. 

Rising from his seat to hug Elly the 79-year-old promised her "we're going to have a great time." 

Elly took to Facebook on Sunday evening to thank people for all the messages of support she had received. "I can't begin to express how privileged I feel to have such an amazing group of people around me. The messages, the comments, well wishes, I mean... I can't cope! It's all so surreal. Thank you from the bottom of my heart everyone." 

Elly is no stranger to the music business, having started her career singing with the family band around Cork and in 2006 started writing her own material music, performing it at venues across the city and county. 

She released her debut album 'When We Live' to widespread critical acclaim in 2014, with her stunning vocals and stirring lyrics being compared to such legendary chanteuses as Janis Joplin and Eva Cassidy.  

She decided to move to London to pursue her solo musical career and since then has been a regular on the city's vibrant pub scene, also playing with the band Contraband. 

She regularly returns back to home turf to play, most notably around Christmas time when she teams up with brother Dan for gigs at Coughlan's in the city.  

Elly and he many fans will no doubt be hoping that the Voice UK turns out to be the break she has been looking for that will catapult to international fame and stardom.