“Thailand’s Got Talent”, a knock-off version of America’s Got Talent, may have found its Susan Boyle.

Bell Nuntita Thailand's Susan Boyle

Bell Nuntita, aka  Nuntrita “Bell” Khampriranon, wowed judges and the audience with her feminine alto voice with her rendition of a sappy Thai pop tune. About 64 seconds into the silky smooth number, to the crowd’s amazement, she suddenly switched up her pipes and then stunned them again when she lowered her pitch to an ultra-masculine bass.

Pretty ladyboy Bell Nuntita

Nuntrita Bell Khampriranon

Bell was born male but has “evolved” into an extremely beautiful female. Hearing Bell croon like a guy got squeals from the audience. By the song’s end, the judges appeared stunned and the audience erupted with wild cheers and rapturous applause.

Bell....sorry guys, she's got a bf!

Bell’s voice was excellent as both genders in her solo duet. She, of course, got the thumbs up from all three judges, receiving a lingering hug from the male hosts.

Said one of the judges after her song: “Initially, I was certain that you were a transexual, but once you began singing, I was fooled to think that you were female. After you started the male verse, I should have trusted my gut feeling.”

Bell’s appearance is not unusual in Thailand where thousands of young men take female hormones and dress as females in a culture called Katoey, or Ladyboy. It seems that Bell has a boyfriend so guys, you are out of luck.

Pretty, isn't he?

Pretty, isn't "she'?

The video of Bell’s performance has gone viral. The feel-good vibes come to an abrupt halt around 4:30 on the video, when Bell recounts her dark family history.

“I’ve been ridiculed a lot, like, ‘you fag’ or stuff like that. But I’ve had to keep it inside the whole time,” she said in a later interview, telling of her transgender journey. “And my dad would not accept me, to the point where he hits me so I could change back from being a transsexual to being ‘normal’.”

“I just want to tell my dad that I love him so much and I can do this.”

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An Internet video of a homeless panhandling man showing off his self-described “God-given gift of voice” has landed him a spot on a local radio show, a dream job with the Cleveland Cavaliers and a house.

Left homeless after his life and career were ruined by drugs and alcohol, Ted Williams has been offered a job by the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers. He and his compelling tale became an online sensation after The Columbus Dispatch posted a video clip of Williams demonstrating his voice-over skills by the side of the road.

Doral Chenoweth III, a reporter from the Columbus Dispatch, came across Williams while he was panhandling near Interstate 71 recently, holding a sign that touted his “God-given gift of voice” and explained that he was a former radio announcer who had fallen on hard times.

“Any help will be gratefully appreciated,” the sign also read.

Homeless Williams panhandling with a sign touting his God-given gift of voice

Chenoweth was taken aback because Williams actually sounded better than the NPR news announcers and that he was not exaggerating when he said he had a great voice.

His delivery is as smooth as that of announcers heard on radio or television. People are now saying that Williams sounds like Don LaFontaine but better.

“This has been totally, totally amazing,” Williams said Wednesday, his voice choking with emotion. “I’m just so thankful. I’m getting a second chance. Amazing.”

“The Cleveland Cavaliers just offered me a full-time job and a house! A house! A house!” Ted Williams said while appearing on a morning radio show in Columbus, Ohio, called “ Dave and Jimmy.”

The Cavaliers offered the 53-year-old Williams a two-year contract, including living expenses, for a job that could include announcing work at the team’s arena. In court records, his address is listed as “Streets of Columbus.”

“I can’t believe what’s going on,” said Williams, a father of nine, adding he feels like Susan Boyle, the Scottish singing sensation who became an overnight star. “God gave me a million-dollar voice, and I just hope I can do right by him.”

The Homeless Man With Golden Voice with his new look

Williams was flying to New York Wednesday night for an appearance on the “Today Show” and a reunion with his 92-year-old mother, who lives in Bedford-Stuyvesant and whom he has not seen for years. Earlier, the website TMZ reported that airport officials would not let him board a plane because he didn’t have proper identification

Williams said he grew up in Brooklyn, and at 14 took a field trip to a radio station. While there, he was struck by the fact that one of the on-air announcers did not sound as good as him.

Williams was hooked. It took him years to develop his voice, and he also went to school for training.

“Alcohol and drugs — and a few other things — became my life,” Williams admitted, but added that he has “been two years clean.

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Susan Boyle has become the first solo artist to reach No 1 in the UK and US album charts at the same time twice in a year.

SuBo made history yesterday when her latest album, The Gift, topped the charts on both sides of the Atlantic.

Susan Boyle's second album The Gift

Her first album, I Dreamed A Dream, achieved the same success a year ago.

Simon Cowell, who signed Susan to his label Syco, calls The Britain’s Got Talent runner-up his “superwoman.”

“I’m thrilled for Susan, she has once again defied the odds,” says Simon, 51.

Only The Beatles and The Monkees have equalled single 49-year-old Susan’s incredible feat.

Her popularity exceeds Madonna and even Elvis Presley.

“I’ve never felt happier in my life,” says Susan. “This is an amazing result and one I never expected.”

Boyle released  “The Gift” (Syco/Sony) in the United States on Nov. 9 and a day earlier in the United Kingdom, with Sony Music Entertainment planning an initial U.S. shipment of 1.2 million units. First-week U.S. sales is projected to be about 300,000 units, less than half the 701,000 that her debut, “I Dreamed a Dream,” sold during Thanksgiving week last year, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

The continued slump in recorded-music sales means that it may be impossible for “The Gift” to match the phenomenal sales of “I Dreamed a Dream,” which benefited from the YouTube-fueled frenzy over Boyle’s April 2009 debut appearance on “Britain’s Got Talent.”

The debut album has sold 3.8 million units in the United States and 1.8 million in the United Kingdom, according to SoundScan and the Official Charts Co. (OCC), respectively. Sony says “I Dreamed a Dream” has sold 9 million units worldwide, and IFPI cited the album as the global best seller of 2009.

Boyle will also be making a flurry of U.S. TV appearances. She appeared on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” Oct. 19, with further appearances to follow on “Today,” “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” TNT’s “Christmas in Washington” special and more, although international appearances will be more limited than on the last campaign.

“American TV plays to her strengths,” says Shack, who cites Australia, Canada and Japan as priority international markets. “She’s not that comfortable engaging with European chat show presenters.”

“The Gift” contains 10 tracks, a mixture of seasonal standards like “O Holy Night” and “O Come All Ye Faithful” and covers of Lou Reed’s “Perfect Day,” Crowded House’s “Don’t Dream It’s Over” and Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”

Performing for the Pope was a huge accomplishment for Susan Boyle, but on yesterday’s (Oct. 19) episode of “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” the singer gave what Oprah called the biggest performance the show has ever seen.

Boyle took over Oprah’s stage with a 60-person choir to perform the Crowded House hit “Don’t Dream It’s Over,” which appears on her second album “The Gift,” for Winfrey’s “The Next Big Thing” episode. All of the guests, including Boyle, 10-year-old “America’s Got Talent” sensation Jackie Evancho, and “You Light Up My Life” singer Debby Boone, were named as the “next big thing” when they first took the spotlight.

Boyle was 47 when she catapulted to fame in 2009 after her audition on “Britain’s Got Talent” went viral and paved the way for her debut album “I Dreamed A Dream” to start at  No. 1 on the Billboard 200 a little under a year ago with 701,000 and spent six weeks at the top. The album became the world’s top selling album last year.

You can also read more about The Gift at this earlier post of mine.

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A musician who lost both arms in a childhood accident and plays the piano with his toes has won the first series of “China’s Got Talent,” performing his version of James Blunt’s wistful love song “You’re Beautiful” to a packed audience at the Shanghai Stadium. He thrilled the judges and live audience with his performance and was accorded a standing ovation after his performance.

All three judges on the show Sunday praised 23-year-old Liu Wei for his determination, urging him to keep on pursuing his dreams, and the Beijing native said he would try, quipping, “At least I have a pair of perfect legs.”

For winning the Chinese version of the show that helped make Britain’s Susan Boyle a superstar, Liu is reportedly set to receive a contract with Fremantle Media and Sony Music Entertainment.

At the award ceremony, Liu was invited by Taiwan singer Jolin Tsai to be a guest performer on her world tour, which gives him the chance to perform in Las Vegas for three months.

Asian superstar Jolin Tsai

The award ceremony also featured winners and finalists from the popular “Got Talent” series in Britain and the United States, including British singer Paul Potts and dance group Diversity.

At age 18, he decided to pursue a career in music, using his feet to play the piano, much as he uses them to navigate on the computer, eat, dress and brush his teeth.

Armless pianist Liu Wei

“China’s Got Talent,” a weekly program shown on local channel Dragon TV, has helped draw attention to the hopes and challenges of disabled and otherwise disadvantaged Chinese.

The program is part of British music mogul Simon Cowell’s “Got Talent” franchise, which now has versions broadcasting in more than 30 countries. Simon Cowell, best known as the former acerbic judge on “American Idol,” developed the TV format of “Got Talent” in Britain, the United States and Europe. He has become one of the most powerful entrepreneurs in reality TV. The British version of the show catapulted the dowdy Scottish singer Susan Boyle to international stardom last year.

Liu Wei defeated 7-year-old standup comedian Zhang Fengxi at the final on Sunday at the Shanghai Stadium, the Shanghai Daily reported. Cai Xiuqing, 23, a college student from Shantou in Guangdong province, won third place for singing “Boundless Oceans Vast Skies,” a hit for Hong Kong rock back Beyond.

The show’s director, Jin Lei, told the newspaper that the success of the show ensured it would continue next year.

“China has so much untapped grassroots talent, and we believe the show will maintain its nationwide vitality and popularity for three or five years,” said Jin.

Gong xi ni (which means congratulations to you in Chinese), Liu Wei! You have touched the lives of countless people worldwide and you are a true inspiration to the entire world!

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Susan Boyle’s second album, due for release in US on November 9 on the SYCO/Columbia Records label, has topped the US charts on pre-orders six weeks before its official release. The official UK release date is November 8.

The Gift is number one on Amazon’s US music chart just one day after being made available to order. Boyle’s album topped the chart, beating new releases from Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Robert Plant, Neil Young and Taylor Swift.

Susan Boyle's second album "The Gift"

Amazon declared this “the season of Susan” and said the interest in the Britain’s Got Talent sensation was unprecedented. “She has done phenomenally well going to the top of the chart in the US based on one day of pre-orders alone and she’s racing up the charts in the UK as well,” an Amazon spokesperson said. “She has really captured the hearts of the nation, both here and in the States.”

Susan Boyle’s debut album, “I Dreamed A Dream”, was a 9 times platinum record-breaking debut in 2009 to become the largest global CD pre-order in history; it went on to sell nine million copies and was the biggest selling album of that year. Judging by the buzz around the singer’s new release, she may just top that.

The album features ten tracks including Christmas classics “The First Noel”, “Away In A Manger”, “O Holy Night”, “Make Me A Channel For Your Peace,” “Auld Lang Syne,” and “O Come All Ye Faithful,”alongside covers of pop hits such as Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”, Lou Reed’s “Perfect Day” and Crowded House’s “Don’t Dream It’s Over.”

The first single from the album is a cover of “Perfect Day”, a song originally written and performed by Lou Reed in 1972. SuBo was to perform “Perfect Day” on “America’s Got Talent” earlier this month but was prevented from singing it, leading to accusations that Lou Reed himself had refused her permission for the song. Representatives for Lou Reed said the song had been cleared for British television but not for the United States before the “America’s Got Talent” broadcast. Evidently SuBo and Lou Reed have buried the hatchet.

Susan launched an online talent competition called Susan’s Search to search for a duet partner where wannabe singers were invited to upload videos of themselves performing “Silent Night.” The competition was one of YouTube’s most successful, getting one entry every six minutes after its launch last July. Susan picked given ambulance medic, Amber Stassi, a shot at fame by selecting her for a duet on her forthcoming album. Susan Boyle’s “The Gift” presents the debut of Amber Stassi, singing a transcendent duet with Susan on “Do You Hear What I Hear?”

Amber Stassi

Amber Stassi

Susan said in a press release: “When making this album, I really wanted the songs to touch hearts. Music has always been a companion to me, particularly on special occasions. I wanted there to be a mix of songs that would flow with all our moods this holiday season. As much as the season is a time for reflection, it is also a time for fun and enjoyment with those closest to us.”

On another note, Susan Boyle recently moved into her new Ł300,000 house which she bought in March this year. The house is lovely, but modest by celebrity standards.

Susan Boyle's new house

It had been reported by Susan’s brother, Gerry Boyle, that she could not afford to furnish the home, as despite amassing Ł10,000,000 in royalties from the sale of her albums, the money was said to be “ring fenced” and Susan was reportedly living on just Ł500 per week.

With Christmas just three months away, Susan Boyle’s “The Gift” will be the perfect gift.

“The Gift”…..Susan Boyle’s gift to the world!

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A new singing sensation is causing such a stir on the Internet that a lot of people are asking if he’s the next Susan Boyle. He is Taiwan’s Lin Yu Chun.

Lin, repeatedly referred to “xiao pang” or “little fatty” on the show and whose name means “educate the masses”, gave a stirring performance of “Amazing Grace”  in the first round of the Taiwanese singing talent show “Super Star Avenue” to advance to the second round.

In the second round, the 23-year old Lin blew away the judges and the audience with his soaring rendition of Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You”.  The YouTube video of him performing this song has become a runaway hit, spreading like wildfire with almost a million views right now as I am writing this. And the video clip was released only two days ago!

The song was first written and performed by Dolly Parton but it became a monster hit for Whitney Houston when she covered the song for “The Bodyguard” soundtrack.. The immense online buzz surrounding Lin’s YouTube video is due to Lin’s pitch-perfect rendition of Whitney Houston’s version. Lin’s feat has received massive coverage even in the United States in prestigious media such as  Billboard.com, CBSnews.com, Chicago Tribune.com. TMZ.com, Huffington Post, etc.

If Lin Yu Chun wins the competition, he will reportedly earn $1 million and the chance to release his own album.  Go for it, Xiao Pang!

Click on the video below to see his jaw-dropping performance:

Now compare it with Whitney Houston’s performance:

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On April 1 1961 (yes, April Fool Day), a Scottish girl was born to a couple who already had nine children. At her birth, her mother was 47 and during the difficult childbirth, the girl was briefly deprived of oxygen and was later diagnosed as having learning difficulties. She was often bullied as a child and was nicknamed “Susie Simple” at school.

After leaving school with few qualifications, she took singing and acting lessons. In 1995 her audition for Michael Barrymore’s “My Kind of People” was filmed. The amateur video shows Barrymore was apparently more interested in mocking her than in her singing ability.

After winning several local singing competitions, she was urged by her mother to enter Britain’s Got Talent. She almost abandoned her plan to enter the show as she believed she was too old and that it was a young person’s game. Her mother’s death motivated her to go on Britain’s Got Talent as a tribute to her mother.

In August 2008 she applied for an audition for the third series of Britain’s Got Talent and was accepted after a preliminary audition in Glasgow. She sang “I Dreamed A Dream” from Les Miserables in the first round. When she first took to the stage, the initially cynical attitude of the audience and the judges was obvious….she was “prejudged”  because of her appearance. This cynicism was transformed into a standing ovation when she finished her rendition of “I Dreamed A Dream”. Her initial demeanour and homely appearance caused the judges and the audience to be “waiting for her to squawk like a duck”.

A new superstar was born and the world came to know about this Scottish lady Susan Boyle. Boyle’s first album “I Dreamed A Dream” was released on November 23 2009 and has enjoyed phenomenal success worldwide, racking up sales of a few million copies so far! Her album raced to the top of the charts in US, UK and many countries worldwide.

Boyle’s story is a like a fairy tale about overcoming adversity and prejudice and a rebuke to people’s tendency to judge others based on their physical appearance. Her performance is a victory for talent and artistry in a culture obsessed with physical attractiveness and presentation.

I bought Susan Boyle’s “I Dreamed A Dream” last week and have been enjoying her renditions of  “I Dreamed A Dream”, “Wild Horses”, “Cry Me A River”, “How Great Thou Art”, “You’ll See”, “Daydream Believer”, “Up To The Mountain”, “Amazing Grace”, “Who I Was Born To Be”, “Proud”, “The End Of The World” and “Silent Night”. You can find the album at Speedy Video in Miri……go buy it and enjoy the music!

I Dreamed A Dream by Susan Boyle

I Dreamed A Dream by Susan Boyle

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