Childhood & Early Life
Joel Adams was born Joel Gonçalves, in Brisbane, Australia, on December 16, 1996. He was the eldest of the three children in the family. He grew up with two younger siblings: Tom and Julia.
He is of Portuguese, South African, and English descent. He was a music lover ever since he was a kid. Most of his interest in music was due to his parents, who were hardcore music lovers. Music had a special place in their household, and Joel grew up listening to artists such as ‘Led Zeppelin,’ Al Green, and James Taylor.
As a kid, he learned to play the piano, the guitar, and the drums, but music was mostly just his hobby. He did not aim to make a career out of music. He never even performed in front of a crowd that often. His first performance made him famous worldwide.
He enrolled at ‘Marist College Ashgrove’ and finished his high-school graduation. He had started writing his own songs by the time he was 15 years old.
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In 2012, ‘The X Factor’ held auditions for its Australian version. At first, Joel was not very keen on appearing on the show, but at the last moment, he decided to audition for it.
He was 15 years old at that time and did not have much experience of performing on stage. He later said that it was his first live performance in front of a crowd. He sang the cover for Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney’s song ‘The Girl is Mine.’
He earned rave reviews from the show’s judges, for his voice and singing talent. The televised audition became a social-media sensation. The video of him singing the song has earned more than 6.9 million views to date.
He soon became the favorite on the show and was widely featured as one of the youngest and most promising singers on the show. Despite gaining a huge fan base, he could not win the show and was eliminated in the ‘Bootcamp Round.’
He became a celebrity in school and participated in many music talent contests. During one such contest organized in his school, he wrote a song titled ‘Please Don’t Go.’ It took him an hour to write that song from scratch.
By then, he had become extremely serious about a music career. Following his high-school graduation, he traveled around the US to look for career opportunities.
In 2011, he launched his own ‘YouTube’ channel and uploaded many videos of himself singing covers of classics. He had already gained enough traction through his ‘The X Factor’ stint, and thus, his ‘YouTube’ channel became instantly popular.
After he built a substantial fan following, he released his debut single, ‘Please Don’t Go,’ in November 2015. The song immediately became a viral hit, and a few weeks after its release, it became the most-streamed song in the world.
The song was released under the label ‘Will Walker Records.’ Joel released the official video of the song on his ‘YouTube’ channel, where it has garnered more than 77 million views to date. The song also did well overseas. It reached the 54th spot on the ‘Canadian Hot 100.’ In Europe, the song became a chart-topping success, reaching the 6th and 11th spots in Sweden and Norway, respectively.
After making its debut at the 88th spot on the ‘ARIA’ chart in February 2016, the single peaked at the 55th spot. It charted on the ‘UK Independent Single Breakers’ chart for 42 weeks It also aced the charts during June, July, August, and September 2016. The song reached the 50th spot on the ‘UK Singles Chart.’
Achieving worldwide success, the song charted in more than 15 countries, including Australia, the USA, and the UK. In Australia, however, the song could not reach the top 50 on the ‘ARIA Top 100 Singles Chart.’
Joel had become sort of a worldwide phenomenon on the musical front. ‘Spotify’ named him the ‘16th Most Influential Artist in the World’ on their ‘25 Under 25’ list.
The single ‘Please Don’t Go’ has been streamed more than 400 million times on different social-media platforms. In November 2016, Joel announced in an interview that he had been working on his debut studio album. While he worked on his album, he spent most of his time in London and Stockholm. He spent a great chunk of 2016 working on his debut album.
In January 2017, Joel released another single, ‘Die For You.’ He made the single free to download from his official website.
In October 2018, Joel released a single titled ‘Fake Friends,’ for which he collaborated with Zach Skelton and Ryan Tedder. However, the single failed to leave a strong impression on his listeners. It has just managed a little more than 373 thousands views on ‘YouTube.’
Family & Personal Life
Joel Adams entered ‘The X Factor’ using his birth name, “Joel Gonçalves.” However, when he set out to begin his career, he thought his name was hard to pronounce. He had a Portuguese name, owing to his father’s Portuguese heritage. He used his mother’s maiden name as his last name, for stage performances.
There have been several rumors about Joel being gay, but he has denied them all. He also likes to keep his romantic life to himself.