BBC: Ukulele teen Zoe Bestel releases first single

4th May 2012

A 14-year-old girl from Dumfries and Galloway is hoping for musical success as she releases her first single showcasing her ukulele skills.

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Singer-songwriter Zoë Bestel is a third-year pupil at the Douglas Ewart High School in Newton Stewart.

Her first single, 35 Missed Calls, has been released by Distilled Records.

She is also involved with the Spring Fling arts festival in south west Scotland, having recorded a song to promote the event.

Zoë, who lives just outside Wigtown, taught herself the ukulele after being given one by a family friend who is a music teacher.

"I picked up the ukulele in January 2011 when I was just 13 because I heard a song I really liked by Train called Hey Soul Sister," she explained.

"It had a bit of a ukulele riff in it and I really wanted to learn it.

"Once I had taught myself to play I started writing my own songs and by June that year I got my first gig."

By her third gig she was being asked to support Scots folk singer Emily Smith and had been offered a record deal.

"Since then I've been in the studio," she added.

Leah Black, Spring Fling manager, said: "Zoe has an incredible talent and we are really lucky to have her as the voice and sound of Spring Fling 2012.

"Not only has she composed and sung the theme tune for our movie, but she is performing at our ceilidh - which could be a great chance to see her in a small venue before she gets whisked off to stardom.

"This year is Spring Fling's 10th birthday and we have an amazing line up of artists and craftspeople opening up their studios across Dumfries and Galloway."