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'America's Got Talent' contestant gets standing ovation for violin cover of Kanye West's 'Heartless'

Claudine Varela
Jan 17, 2019
05:57 A.M.
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Brian Joseph King stuns with his impressive violin performance of Kanye West's "Heartless." Judges predicted a promising end for him in the competition.

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“America’s Got Talent” favorite Brian King Joseph continued to stun during the finals of the talent show where he delivered an exceptional rendition of Kanye West’s “Heartless.” The 27-year-old electric violinist has been consistent in giving powerful performances and his most recent tops them all.

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Judges of the show gave the most impressive compliments after Brian performed. Howie Mandel thought the epic performance merited a finale spot on the show and not an opening sequence. Mel B described him as “100% the best violinist of all time.”

Heidi Klum had her fingers crossed that Brian would be the show’s next winner as Simon Cowell previously predicted. He expressed the same sentiment again when he said,

“This is everything this show should be, which is someone who starts off good, ends up amazing. Look, I think you’ve got a real shot here.I think this show — I hope — will change your life. You deserve it. Thank you for coming on our show with your talent.”

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Brian ended his performance to a standing ovation as he addressed Kanye West.

“Take me on tour, Kanye! Let’s go!”

Brian’s entry into the competition highlighted his amazing skill with the violin but it also let fans in on his health condition. In 2012, he was diagnosed with neuropathy, a nerve disease that numbs his hands and feet which is quite the irony considering his hands are vital part of his talent. But Brian says it’s all a matter of “mind over pain.”

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“I think a big reason why I’m able to still play and keep that muscle memory is because I keep doing it. I don’t want to let that die. The thing is, doing that causes me a lot of pain because I’m literally holding my nerves back from going completely numb, and I’m trying to deal with them, but they’re fighting against me every step of the way, and it’s excruciating pain, but the adrenaline that I can get while I’m playing helps you push through that you know, when people are out there.”

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Brian eventually placed third in the competition losing to magician Shin Lim. The 26-year-old wowed audiences with his sleight of hand magic and close-up tricks. For his final trick, he did a card trick with host Tyra Banks and her co-hosts Matt Iseman and Akbar Gbaja-Biamila.

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Shin is the 13th winner of the competition following a string of talented performers who came before her. One of them, Neal E. Boyd who won on the 3rd season was found dead in his bedroom in June. Neal reportedly suffered a heart attack after a long list of health issues including heart and kidney failure and liver disease aggravated by his excessive weight.

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