How duet with a busker launched new career for Batley singer Jade Helliwell

A Batley singer has told how her life was changed forever by a viral video of her performing with a busker on a night out in Leeds city centre.

By Daniel Sheridan
Saturday, 7th May 2022, 6:00 am
Jade Helliwell, 31, has performed across the world and had global recognition with awards and huge shows thanks to the video of her performance of 'Hallelujah' in Leeds

Five years on, Jade Helliwell, 31, has performed across the world and the video of her performance of Hallelujah in Leeds has had more than 23 million views.

Speaking on the fifth anniversary of the video that changed her life, Jade said she left her job as a teaching assistant to become a full-time musician thanks to the success of the video and support of people around the world.

She has since performed in the United States and beyond, with further festival appearances on the horizon.

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Batley singer-songwriter Jade Helliwell

Jade has more than 70,000 fans on her social media pages and is adored by music-lovers across the world.

After posting the video of herself singing with a busker back in 2017, Jade was quickly inundated with offers from across the music industry.

“When the video went viral the EP I had released in 2016, Forget The Night, went to number one in the iTunes country charts and number eight in the all genre charts,” she said.

“Since then, I have gone on to release another EP and eight singles, scoring a string of iTunes country number ones and have been playlisted on several editorial playlists on Spotify including New Music Nashville and Wild Country.

“I’m super thankful for the viral video as I was already making a name for myself in the UK country scene but the video made me take the leap to pursue this dream full-time.”

Jade has travelled the world as a result of the video being released.

“In 2019 I was lucky enough to be invited on a tour of Australia with Buckle and Boots Festival,” she added.

“We played in Brisbane, Toowoomba and more, finishing with a set in the main stage at Tamworth Country Music Festival.

“I’ve performed in Nashville, Tennessee, across the UK and been part of a tour of Denmark with Nashville Nights Denmark. I’m super excited to be returning to play there this September.”

Jade has also taken home a host of awards including Yorkshire Roots outstanding artist in 2017 and 2018.

During lockdown, Jade and her boyfriend Luke Thomas released a live stream every Thursday.

She is now looking forward to a busy 2022, with a busy festival season ahead of her, as well as the launch of her first podcast.

Jade added: “I’ve just completed a Kickstarter campaign where incredible fans raised over £10k to fund the recording and release of a brand new EP this summer.”