Congratulations to young York singing star Beth McCarthy who wowed the judges as BBC1 talent show The Voice returned to our screens.
Beth’s stunning version of LMFAO track Sexy And I Know It enraptured the audience at the Manchester studios. New judge Ricky Wilson, lead singer of Leeds band Kaiser Chiefs, was the first to hit the button to swing round and back Beth.
Fellow judge Kylie Minogue then asked the audience “What do you think?” And on the last beat of the song she hit the button to join Ricky in voting for Beth.
The question then was: which of the two would she pick as her mentor. A clue came early on when she revealed her home town. “Oh, York!” said Ricky with a big Yorkshire grin.
So what else did we learn from Saturday’s show?
1. Beth’s a pub veteran
Kylie was stunned by her age: “Wait a minute, you’re 16? How long have you been singing for?”
“I started gigging when I was 13,” said Beth, impressing the panel, which also included will.i.am and Sir Tom Jones. “In pubs and clubs.”
“Pubs!” said will.i.am. The very thought that someone so young might have crossed the threshold of a licensed premises left the man raised in the LA housing projects utterly shocked.
The judges were relieved to her that she wasn’t frequenting such dens of iniquity alone. “The driving force behind my music is my dad. He’s my biggest fan – and my roadie! He carries my guitar everywhere,” Beth told The Voice in the build up to her performance.
2. God hails from Pontypridd
“When he talks he sounds a bit like God,” Beth said of Sir Tom. “Can you imagine though, if God was talking to you, you’d be the voice.”
To which the omnipresent Tom, who is only 72 years old, had no response.
3. There is a knack to flushing the loo
“We do have something else in common though,” Beth told fellow Yorkshire resident Ricky. “I was looking at your Twitter. I looked down the comments and you were like, ‘There’s a knack to my toilet flush’. Well I have a knack to my toilet flush as well!”
This apparently involves pushing it “with just the right amount of force”. While Ricky prefers “one blast”, flush fans.
4. Will.i.am has a flash bog
Astonishingly, this new York loo talk continued, as Beth quizzed world renowned musician and producer will.i.am on his waste disposal techniques. His secret? “Automatic flushes. All you gotta do is get up and it flushes on its own.”
“We don’t all live in space!” Ricky pointed out, adding: “This isn’t going where I wanted it to go…”
5. Ricky’s never been this far away from home
“I’m not going to make a big deal about the fact you’re 16,” said Ricky, once the Internal Plumbing Conference had finished. “Apart from the fact that I don’t think I was even allowed on the train into Leeds when I was 16.”
So when he sang “Oh my god I can’t believe it, I’ve never been this far away from home” he must have been talking about a day trip to Harewood House.
6. Yorkshire blood is thicker than watter
There was another thing Ricky wasn’t making a big deal of – “the fact that you’re from York, which I can relate to. Because that’s just cheating.”
But he said this with a grin as cheesy as the biggest slice of Wensleydale, and we all know that Yorkshire folk stick together. “I’ll go with Ricky,” said Beth.
And Beth’s back off the telly…
“I’m busking in York today and sharing the pitch with the hugely talented 16 year old singer songwriter Beth McCarthy who wowed 10 million viewers of The Voice last Saturday night,” said Jonny Walker, posting this picture on his Facebook page on Monday afternoon.
Catch her on York’s streets while you can. As Ricky said to Beth on Saturday: “It’s going to be amazing, and I look forward to hearing you sing again when we’ve chosen your song together…”