Reminder: Lorde was a 12-year-old musical pop prodigy, and so were these guys
It’s not every day you stumble upon a sixth grader who can flawlessly belt out an incredibly challenging rock cover. I guess that’s only something you can expect from a two-time Grammy Award winner like Lorde.
This week, we were reminded of her boundless talent with the audio release of her 2009 cover of “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon. The audio was recorded five years ago on Radio NZ when Lorde (aka Ella Yelich-O’Connor) was just 12 years old. Her voice, while noticeably young, is still recognizable and undeniably impressive.
Lorde isn’t the only child-talent-turned-superstar whose younger voices are archived. In fact, some of our most beloved artists were also itty bitty powerhouses. From veteran artists like Beyoncé and Justin Timberlake to newcomers like Ariana Grande — these mega talents have been perfecting their styles since long before we knew their names. Let’s break out some of that fuzzy talent show footage, shall we?
1. Christina Aguilera
While the rest of us were barely getting through our SAT practice tests, Christina Aguilera was belting out Toni Braxton songs on the stage. Her natural talent is impossible to ignore and pretty impressive for someone still way too young to drive.
Seven years before debuting her power anthem “Leave“, an adorable, pint-sized and [mostly] toothless JoJo appeared on Kids Say The Darndest Things. Aside from her obvious singing abilities, please note her superb improvisational skills. Total genius!
If you’ve ever seen Beyoncé in concert, you walk away knowing that she was destined to be a performer. Can anyone else see the miniature Sasha Fierce beginning to form? I think this is what they call the “it” factor.
4. Bruno Mars
Bruno Mars has been impersonating Elvis Presley since he was 4 years old. Anyone impersonating Elvis at the age of 4 is destined to break hearts, and Bruno Mars is certainly no exception. This explains the lasting voluminous hair and the flawless dance moves.
5. Aaliyah Haughton
Even at 10 years old, Aaliyah was nothing short of a songbird. Anyone else hear those high notes echoed in “One In A Million“?
6. Ariana Grande
Don’t underestimate this pint-sized powerhouse. Ariana sounded way more like a seasoned diva than an 8-year-old singing the National Anthem.
7. Justin Timberlake, J.C. Chasez, and Ryan Gosling
I was going to separate this into two parts for Justin and J.C., but this video was too good to pass up. I know Ryan Gosling isn’t a musician by trade, but it’s well worth watching all three of them get down in those billowing outfits. For the record, they all sound like the adolescent version of Boyz II Men, which is pretty damn impressive. Shout out to the Mickey Mouse Club.
8. Taylor Swift
Who knew this girl would be making history with a debut album five years later? In spite of being a massive success, she still maintains that same sweet and honest accessibility you see here.