Autistic boy who had fear of music amazes with pitch-perfect cover of 'Hallelujah'

19 September 2019, 13:25 | Updated: 19 September 2019, 13:36

By Tom Eames

A young boy with autism has beaten his fear of music to become a truly talented singer.

Nine-year-old Justin Kiely-May from Dublin, previously needed to wear ear defenders to avoid getting upset by high-pitched music or loud noises.

However, when his mother Andrea saw him singing along to Leonard Cohen’s 'Hallelujah', she realised her son actually had incredible vocal abilities.

Andrea secretly filmed Justin singing the classic song - later made famous by Jeff Buckley - and his uncle Brandon Craig uploaded it to Twitter. The clip soon went viral, gaining 83,000 likes and 14,000 retweets in a matter of days.

Justin is seen smiling while he sings the emotional song with a pitch-perfect rendition.

Justin’s mum said he heard Alexandra Burke’s version of 'Hallelujah' on the radio and quickly fell in love with the song. She described her son as a "pure loving little boy".

Justin has become a viral star thanks to his version of 'Hallelujah'
Justin has become a viral star thanks to his version of 'Hallelujah'. Picture: Jam Press

She said: "Justin was diagnosed with autism at three and most of his life he has struggled with music, especially high pitched songs.

"We dreaded going to birthday parties just in case they played a song he didn’t like as it would upset him for days. We got him ear defenders and that helped.

"He got to know 'Hallelujah' and one day I heard him sing along to the song so I turned the music down and just listened and recorded him. I cant look at his little face without wanting to cry, happy tears, of course.

"He’s just such a pure loving little boy and I’m so glad that now people get to see what I see. He was born to perform he has so much confidence."

Andrea added that other songs Justin likes to sing include 'Shallow' by Lady Gaga and 'Proud Mary' by Tina Turner.