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Singing Irish toddler becomes YouTube hit

Two-year-old Ella O'Brien's rendition of 'Baby' is set to smash internet records.

A video of her performing the hit single, made famous by American teen idol Justin Bieber, has already scored close to a million hits in just five days on YouTube.

That rate of YouTube 'hits' is higher than that for bootleg songs posted for international stars, such as Bruce Springsteen, REM and even U2.

In contrast, Cork band Crystal Swing -- whose career rocketed earlier this year thanks to YouTube exposure -- have recorded 600,000 hits over the space of three months for their song 'He Drinks Tequila'.

Last night, Ella's uncle, John O'Brien, said the entire family was astounded by the huge global reaction to the video.

"It all started out as a bit of fun," he said. "Ella's cousin Maria is a huge Justin Bieber fan. When Ella comes over to visit, she loves the music and she sings along," he said.

"Ella was singing along one day and jumping on the bed and Maria decided to record her. We put it up on Facebook, so that only family members could look at the video clip.

"But the reaction was so great, we decided to put it up on YouTube. There were 939,251 hits by 4pm on Tuesday. We reckon it will soon break the one-million mark."

The family -- who are based in Greenmount in Cork -- remain astounded by the phenomenal global reaction to Ella's singing.

"Most of the comments have been really good," John added.

"We have another clip of Ella singing a new Justin Bieber song but we don't want to post it just yet, so it doesn't take attention away from her version of 'Baby'. But watch this space," he said.

Ella's mother Louise has been equally shocked by the reaction.

Complimentary comments are being posted about her daughter's singing by YouTube viewers in the US, UK, Japan, France, Germany and Belgium.

"She's soooo cute -- I just love her eyes. Justin, watch out," one fan posted. Another insisted that he preferred Ella's version of 'Baby' to the original, commenting: "She is better singing than Bieber."

But the prospect of a professional singing career remains a long way off for Ella.

"She has to start school yet," her uncle said.

Belfast Telegraph