Big thank you from

Lisburn singing hopeful oh so close to Aussie X Factor title


Andrew with his father Harry Lawson. The family shop which was in Bridge Street.

Andrew with his father Harry Lawson.

The family shop which was in Bridge Street.

L1SBURN singing hopeful Andrew Lawson has narrowly missed out on winning the Australian version of hit TV Show, the X-Factor.

The 18-year-old was eliminated from the competition last weekend in the grand final won by bookies favourite Altyian Childs.

Andrew, who left Northern Ireland aged six with his family, received positive and negative comments from the judges during the live final on Sunday night.

He performed four times during the show. The judges loved his jazz version of Frank Sinatra's Fly Me To The Moon and praised his version of The Eagles' Heartache Tonight. But they were critical of his rendition of his performance of Somewhere In This World. Boyzone star Ronan Keating was particularly harsh on the teenager.

"I just don't think that was a good enough delivery and a good enough performance and I can see it in your face you know it."

Andrew gave a lovely speech after the announcement was made. He stood in shock as tears welled when he missed out on the final two spots.

But what followed was a testament to all he achieved and how much he had grown as an artist and as a person since auditioning for the competition.

Andrew watched his journey on X-Factor on the big screen, from his first audition to singing with James Blunt on Sunday.

He was given a standing ovation as the montage came to an end and he thanked the nation for all its love and support.

The teenage singer said he never thought he would make it as far as he did, and he was very proud of himself.

Hairdresser Sally Chatfield, from Victoria, was runner-up.

His thrilled aunt Jenny Dunlop said: "What an achievement. We are all so proud of how far he has come, this is only the start of a long and glittering music career."

She said the teenager was looking forward to moving to Sydney to pursue a career in music and record an album.

Former Mayor of Lisburn, Councillor Allan Ewart, who used to be a neighbour of the Lawson family when they lived in Broomhedge, said Andrew should be proud of himself and his incredible achievement.

Andrew started playing guitar at age seven, and writes his own music. Singing is the first thing he does when he gets up and the last thing he does before bed.

Andrew said his Dad Harry, who used to run a butcher's shop in Bridge Street, exposed him to a different world of music.

He listed Elvis, Sinatra, Dean Martin and Willie Nelson as his singing idols.

"They are great story-tellers," he said.

Ulster Star