Irish traveller mum melts talent show judges with When You Were Sweet 16

The travelling community often get a bad press but a mother-of-two went some way to redressing the balance when she appeared on Ireland’s Got Talent.

Sharon Ward began by singing Stand by Me by Ben E. King. She dedicated her performance to her two children and said she hoped to make her travelling people proud.

“There’s loads of good Travellers out there so the more positive things that are being done, the better. Hopefully this is one of them positive things and that my people are so proud.

“I’d like the children to think that nothing can hold them back in life.”

Sharon Ward on Ireland's Got talent

One of the judges, Louis Walsh, suspected that although Sharon did a good job on Stand By Me, she probably chose it because she thought it would be right for the show even though it wasn’t ‘really her’.

Sharon explained: “I thought I was doing a good thing by picking something that everybody knew and that it’d be familiar and they’d like it.”

Walsh asked her what song she would have sung if she was trying to represent her true self. She replied: I would probably have sung something by Finbarr Furey.”

“Could you sing a little bit of it now,” asked Walsh. “I could,” she said.

“Off you go then,” said Walsh. “This is YOU.”

Sharon then sang one verse of the song unaccompanied and brought the house down.

Louis Walsh told her: “This is you, I know it.”

After a thunderous reception from the audience, Sharon got a thumbs up from all the judges and is through to the next round.

Take a look at the video below.

More about When You Were Sweet 16

Written by Andrew Moore

Andrew Moore

Andrew Moore is a writer for Irish Music Daily and Ireland Calling.
His favourite Irish music bands are the Dropkick Murphys and the Pogues.
You can follow him on

Did you know?


Singer songwriter Ed Sheeran performed an Irish language version of his smash single Thinking Out Loud on RTÉ 2fm. It was a great gesture from Sheeran to learn his own song in another language – and his performance came after a classic radio prank. Find out more.

Have you heard about…

A stunning former schoolhouse in Co Sligo was sold in 2017 and turned into a beautiful home. Take a look inside.

What about this…

‘The man who couldn’t be killed’ - firefighter Mike Molloy was an Irish emigrant living in New York in the early 20th century. He was the victim of a consistent series of murder attempts by an insurance fraud gang. Find out more.

Personalised framed prints

Illuminated Letters

Stunning Illuminated Letters based on the ancient Book of Kells

Andrew Moore

Andrew Moore is a writer for Irish Music Daily and Ireland Calling. His favourite Irish music bands are the Dropkick Murphys and the Pogues. You can follow him on

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Copy Protected by Chetan's WP-Copyprotect.