Giving Adele a run for her money! Ella Henderson wows the X Factor judges with heart-rending tribute to her grandfather
08:25 GMT, 19 August 2012
Jahmene Douglas and Curtis Golden also early front-runners after last night's show
Adele has made a career out of using her heartbreak and life lessons to inspire her songs.
And someone who is clearly following in her footsteps is 16-year-old Ella Henderson, who was last night seen wowing the judges on The X Factor with a heart-rending tribute she had penned to her late grandfather.
The teenager admitted prior to her audition that she was taking a risk by performing a track she had written herself, but wanted to use the opportunity to pay tribute to her granddad Bill, who died of lung cancer when Ella was just eight years old.
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Giving Adele a run for her money: Ella Henderson was one of the stand-out performances on last night's X Factor
Impressed: Tulisa Contostavlos gave Ella a standing ovation, while her fellow judges Louis Walsh, Gary Barlow and guest judge Mel B looked highly impressed after the audition
Wearing a cute floral dress, black tights and biker boots, Ella looked more than nervous as she made her way onto the stage to perform in front of the judges – Tulisa Contostavlos, Gary Barlow, Louis Walsh and guest judge Mel B.
While she struggled at point to maintain her composure during the emotional track, Ella got through the audition and nervously awaited the judges' comments.
Following the audition, Mel B led the appraisals by telling Ella: 'Whoever, or whatever you wrote that song about those words, I’m sure, hit a chord with everyone. Your song writing is so clever. It made me go into my own little world, and go, “Oh my God – I felt like that at one point”.
Tribute: Ella performed a heart-rending track she had written in memory of her late grandfather Bill
Waiting in the wings: Ella's friends and family nervously watched from backstage alongside host Dermot O'Leary as the teen performed
'And that’s hard to do as a song writer. But when you sang it, you just made me believe every single word, I was right there with you. What we just witnessed was incredible, absolutely incredible.'
The original: Ella's performance has already earned her comparisons to Adele
Louis added: 'It’s hard to believe that you’re only 16, that was a brilliant audition, absolutely brilliant, you’re a class act.'
And Gary Barlow, who has written countless hit tracks during his career with Take That and as a solo artist, told Ella: 'That performance was absolutely out of this world, it really was. That was really something special, thank you very much for that.'
Tulisa rounded off the comments by telling Ella: 'There’s so many good things I could sit here and say about you, I could go on and on – the list is endless, but the one thing is that you are the one person that I personally go “I really want to mentor, I really do”.
'I see something so special in you, there’s just a spark, you’re just a star.'
Following Ella's audition, Tulisa decided to go backstage to speak to the teenager and find out what the inspiration was behind the song.
After Ella explained she had written the song to say thank you to Bill, who was the first person to encourage her love of music and singing, Tulisa told her: 'You're a star'.
But Ella wasn't the only singer to impress the judges on last night's premiere episode.
Supermarket Jahmene Douglas was another young hopeful who blew the panel away with his incredible voice and stunning range as he belted out Etta James' At Last.
Setting the bar high: Jahmene Douglas also impressed the judges with his rendition of Etta James' At Last
Vocal range: The judges certainly hadn't expected timid Jahmene to be able to produce the sounds he did
The 21-year-old, who works in the Swindon branch of Asda, told the cameras in his pre-audition interview that he 'doesn't mingle very well', adding: 'I'm a stay at home kind of guy.'
However, none of the judges could have predicted the incredible tones which came out of Jahmene's mouth as he performed the classic track.
Following the audition, Louis told Jahmene: 'You know what, you are a revelation, you’ve got The X Factor, this is what we’re looking for. I think a star is born.'
Time to give up the day job Jahmene currently works in the Swindon branch of Asda
Well done, darling! Jahmene was treated to a big hug and kiss from his mother after his amazing audition
Tulisa added: 'You have not just The X Factor, not just raw talent but you have the shock factor. When you stepped on the stage you were like a timid little soul and you couldn’t express yourself, but you started expressing yourself the minute you started singing and it was freaking amazing!'
And Nicole said: 'You are an amazing vocalist, we need more singers like you, real singers. I just want to take you and just eat you up honey.'
Gary concluded the comment by telling Jahmene: 'Mate, I got to tell you I’ve never seen a vocal performance like that before, that was off the scale.
'You completely nailed it today. That is how to do an audition.'
Surprising: Self-confessed nerd Curtis Golden performed an acoustic version of Christina Aguilera's Candyman
Another young man who impressed the judges with his raw talent was self-confessed 'nerd' Curtis Golden.
Prior to performing for Gary, Tulisa, Louis and guest judge Mel B, 18-year-old Curtis revealed that in his spare time he 'plays computer games, read comics, collect figurines of super heroes, a stereotypical nerd really'.
After telling the panel he's a big fan of the Spice Girls, regaling Mel B with a story of how he used his pocket money to buy a cardboard cut-out of her from when she was in Spice World: The Movie, Curtis was given his guitar to sing an acoustic version of Christina Aguilera's Candyman.
Not everybody's a fan: While Curtis impressed most of the judges, guest judge Mel B deemed him 'irritating'
Potential: Curtis is now through to the next round of the show, but will he make it to the live finals
Stunning the audience with his talents, Curtis was quickly cheered on by the crowd and the impressed judges.
Following the audition, Louis told Curtis: 'I didn’t know what to expect, you’re
quirky and you’re different, but you remind me a bit of Peter Kay – in a
good way, I think you’ve definitely got something.'
And while Gary congratulated Curtis on a 'great audition', Tulisa added: 'I think we’ve got a nerd that is very talented.'
The only person who was less than impressed with Curtis' performance was guest judge Mel, who was nicknamed 'Grumpy Spice' due to her harsh comments while on the panel, who told Curtis: 'I found it all a little bit irritating, the overdoing the comedic personality thing, I found that irritating.'
However, Curtis was still put through to the next round after receiving three yeses from Gary, Tulisa and Louis.
Ella Henderson's audition:
Jahmene Douglas's audition:
Curtis Golden's audition: