Nathan Evans (singer)

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Nathan Evans
Born (1994-12-19) 19 December 1994 (age 29)
Airdrie, Scotland
  • Vocals
  • guitar
  • keyboards
Years active2020–present

Nathan Evans (born 19 December 1994) is a Scottish songwriter from Airdrie, Scotland. Evans first gained fame in 2020 by posting videos of himself singing sea shanties on social media service TikTok. In 2021, he released a cover of the folk song "Wellerman", which peaked at the top of the UK Singles Chart and also charted in several other countries.

Early and personal life[edit]

Before launching his music career, Evans was a postal worker with the Royal Mail, in Airdrie, near Glasgow.[1][2] He attended Caldervale High School and has a university degree in web design.[3][4]

In the 2023 BBC Scotland documentary What Next for the Wellerman?, Evans revealed that he was struggling with his mental health and had panic attacks while he was working up to 13 hours a day as a steel erector.[5][6]

Evans is married with one child, born in April 2023.[7][8]

Music career[edit]

Evans had been posting performances of pop and folk songs to TikTok before beginning to post sea shanties.[9] He posted his first traditional sea shanty, "Leave Her Johnny", to TikTok in July 2020.[10] In the following months, viewers of his videos continued to request more sea shanties. Evans subsequently posted videos of himself singing "The Scotsman" and New Zealand folk song about whaling "Wellerman" in December 2020.[1][11]

"Wellerman", which was already well known on the app due to the popularity of his version of the song, quickly gained views on TikTok, inspiring many others to duet and to remix the song, including renditions by composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, comedians Jimmy Fallon and Stephen Colbert,[12] guitarist Brian May, and entrepreneur Elon Musk.[9][11][13][14] As of January 2021, "Wellerman" had eight million views on TikTok and as of 29 May, Evans had 1.3 million followers.[15][16] The sea shanties trend on the app has been called "ShantyTok".[17] In the Rolling Stone article discussing his success, Evans cited The Albany Shantymen version of the song as inspiration.[18]

In January 2021, Evans signed a three-single recording contract with Polydor Records, releasing his official version of "Wellerman" on 22 January 2021.[3] A dance remix of the song created with producers 220 Kid and duo Billen Ted was released simultaneously.[19] His growing music career led him to quit his job as a postal worker.[17] In February 2021, he signed to United Talent Agency.[20] In May 2021, Evans played his first live show. The performance took place in London aboard an electric GoBoat in the River Thames as a promotion for GoBoat's new location at Canary Wharf.[21]

Writing about the nature of Evans's success during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, Amanda Petrusich wrote in The New Yorker: "It seems possible that after nearly a year of solitude and collective self-banishment, and of crushing restrictions on travel and adventure, the shantey might be providing a brief glimpse into a different, more exciting way of life, a world of sea air and pirates and grog."[11]

Evans's second single, "Told You So", was released on 25 June 2021. Like with "Wellerman", two versions were released: a folk-pop version and a dance-pop remix by Digital Farm Animals.[22] Evans released his third single, "Ring Ding (A Scotsman's Story)", on 8 October 2021.[23]

In April 2022, Evans helped publicise the Doctor Who story "Legend of the Sea Devils" with an adaptation of "Wellerman".[24]

Evans planned to release a five-song EP of sea shanties in 2021.[25] However, in November 2022, Evans released his first full-length album, titled Wellerman – The Album, which is largely a collection of sea shanties, including his viral 2021 cover of "Wellerman" and its dance remix. The album also includes Evans's original composition "Haul Away".[26]

In 2022 he featured on the single "Santiano" by the German band of the same name.

Music style[edit]

Evans often using multiple tracks of his own voice. He accompanies himself with guitar and percussion. He sings in a baritone.[11]

Other work[edit]

In January 2022, Evans appeared as himself in the fourth episode of the seventh series of the BBC Scotland mockumentary series Scot Squad. In November 2022, he appeared as a racer at the World Wok Racing Championship, televised in Germany as a special episode of TV Total, representing Scotland.

Evans makes a cameo as a non-player character in the 2023 Bethesda video game Starfield.[27]


In May 2021, it was announced that Evans will be publishing a collection of Sea Shanties titled The Book of Sea Shanties: Wellerman and Other Songs from the Seven Seas. The book was published on 14 October 2021 by Welbeck. It contains over 35 classic shanties and the stories around them, as well as new original shanties by Evans.[28]



Title Details Peak chart positions
Wellerman – The Album 12 30
  • Released: 20 September 2024
  • Label: Electrola, Universal Music
  • Formats: CD, Digital download, streaming


Title Year Peak chart positions Certifications Album

"All I Want" / "Riptide" / "Leave Her Johnny"[A] 2020 Non-album singles
"Hollywood (Acoustic)"
"Wellerman (Sea Shanty)"
(solo or 220 Kid x Billen Ted remix)
2021 1 62 1 1 1 2 1 1 9 1 Wellerman – The Album
"Told You So"[22]
(solo or Digital Farm Animals remix)
23 Non-album singles
"Ring Ding (A Scotsman's Story)"[46]
"Merry Christmas Everyone" / "Driving Home for Christmas" / "Auld Lang Syne"[B]
"The Last Shanty" 2022 Wellerman – The Album
"Drunken Sailor"
(solo or Harris & Ford remix)
"Catch You When You Fall"[47] 2023 1994
"Days of Our Lives"[48]
"Driving to Nowhere"
"Heather on the Hill" 2024 42 30
"—" denotes a title that did not chart, or was not released in that territory.

Music videos[edit]

Title Year
"Wellerman (Sea Shanty / 220 KID x Billen Ted Remix)" 2021
"Wellerman (Sea Shanty)"
"Ring Ding (A Scotsman's Story)"
"Told You So (Digital Farm Animals Remix)"
"Told You So"
"Driving Home for Christmas"
"Merry Christmas Everyone"
"Auld Lang Syne"
"The Last Shanty" 2022
"Drunken Sailor"
"The Banks Of Sacramento"


  1. ^ Nathan Evanss is the name of a three-song single.
  2. ^ Merry Christmas is the name of a three-song single.


  1. ^ a b "The Scottish postman behind 'Sea Shanty TikTok'". BBC News. 14 January 2021. Retrieved 23 January 2021.
  2. ^ Carson, Erin. "Avast ye matey! Sea shanties are taking over TikTok. Here's why". CNET. Retrieved 23 January 2021.
  3. ^ a b Browne, David (26 January 2021). "Sea Shanty Sensation Nathan Evans: 'I'm an Actual Musician'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 27 January 2021.
  4. ^ Cuttle, Jade. "Nathan Evans, the Wellerman singer and TikTok sea shanty star: 'I'm still living on my postie's wage'". The Times. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 16 August 2021.
  5. ^ "Nathan Evans: I suffered panic attacks before Wellerman". BBC. 6 July 2023. Retrieved 19 January 2024.
  6. ^ Dick, Sandra (2 July 2023). "TikTok sea shanty star Nathan Evans on new TV documentary". The Herald. Retrieved 19 January 2024.
  7. ^ Browne, David (26 January 2021). "Sea Shanty Sensation Nathan Evans: 'I'm an Actual Musician'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 19 January 2024.
  8. ^ Hall, Tasha (28 April 2023). "Scots Tik Tok star Nathan Evans gives birth update as he opens up on wife Holly's 'complicated' c-section". Daily Record. Retrieved 19 January 2024.
  9. ^ a b Suliman, Adela; Cobiella, Kelly; Itasaka, Kiko (24 January 2021). "Meet the TikTok star who inspired the 'Wellerman' sea shanty craze". NBC News. Retrieved 24 January 2021.
  10. ^ "The Scottish postman behind 'Sea Shanty TikTok'". BBC. 14 January 2021. Retrieved 19 January 2024.
  11. ^ a b c d Petrusich, Amanda. "The Delights of Sea-Chantey TikTok". The New Yorker. Retrieved 23 January 2021.
  12. ^ "Watch: Stephen Colbert performs Kiwi sea shanty 'Wellerman'". 17 January 2021.
  13. ^ Malvern, Jack (22 January 2021). "Nathan Evans lands record catch with The Wellerman sea shanty". The Times. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 24 January 2021.
  14. ^ Owen, Matt (2 February 2021). "Brian May gets in on the sea shanty action with a sizzling rock guitar cover of the viral TikTok smash". Guitar World. Retrieved 3 February 2021.
  15. ^ Millman, Ethan (22 January 2021). "Sea Shanties Blew Up On TikTok. Now They're Getting Record Deals". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 23 January 2021.
  16. ^ Ni, Vincent (21 May 2021). "TikTok: six of the video-sharing app's greatest hits". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 May 2021.
  17. ^ a b Taylor, Alex (22 January 2021). "Sea shanty: Can viral success make a music career?". BBC News. Retrieved 23 January 2021.
  18. ^ Browne, David (26 January 2021). "Sea Shanty Sensation Nathan Evans: 'I'm an Actual Musician'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 30 March 2021.
  19. ^ Cuttle, Jade (27 January 2021). "Nathan Evans, the Wellerman singer and TikTok sea shanty star: 'I'm still living on my postie's wage'". The Times. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 28 January 2021.
  20. ^ "Sea shanty sensation Nathan Evans signs with UTA". IQ. 10 February 2021. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  21. ^ McEachern, Megan. "Wellerman on water: Scots Sea Shanty star Nathan Evans plays first live performance on River Thames ahead of Brit Awards". The Sunday Post. Retrieved 16 May 2021.
  22. ^ a b Copsey, Rob (23 June 2021). "Nathan Evans' new single Told You So takes his sea shanty sound into big folk-pop: First listen preview". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 23 June 2021.
  23. ^ Flockhart, Gary; Bryan, Anna (8 October 2021). "Nathan Evans: Scottish sea shanty and TikTok sensation behind Wellerman releases new single – watch video here". The Scotsman. Retrieved 9 October 2021.
  24. ^ "Nathan Evans – Wellerman (Sea Devils Version)". Doctor Who YouTube channel. 13 April 2022. Retrieved 16 April 2022.
  25. ^ Reilly, Nick (22 January 2021). "Sea Shanty TikTok star Nathan Evans lands Polydor Records deal". NME. Retrieved 23 January 2021.
  26. ^ "Listen to 'Wellerman' by Nathan Evans". Notion. 11 November 2022. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  27. ^ "Starfield (Video Game 2023)". IMDb. Retrieved 7 September 2023.
  28. ^ Parr, Freya (1 June 2021). "Sea shanty TikTok star Nathan Evans to release The Book of Sea Shanties". Classical Music. Retrieved 4 June 2021.
  29. ^ a b "Discographie von Nathan Evans" (in German). GfK Entertainment. Retrieved 19 February 2021.
  30. ^ a b "Discographie Nathan Evans". Retrieved 28 February 2021.
  31. ^ "Nathan Evans / 220 Kid x Billen Ted | full Official Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 30 January 2021.
  32. ^ "The ARIA Report: Week Commencing 8 March 2021". The ARIA Report. No. 1618. Australian Recording Industry Association. 8 March 2021. p. 4.
  33. ^ "Discographie Nathan Evans". Retrieved 10 March 2021.
  34. ^ "Discografie Nathan Evans". Retrieved 13 February 2021.
  35. ^ "Discography Nathan Evans". Retrieved 31 January 2021.
  36. ^ "Discografie Nathan Evans". Retrieved 26 February 2021.
  37. ^ "Discography Nathan Evans". Retrieved 22 February 2021.
  38. ^ "Discography Nathan Evans". Retrieved 8 February 2021.
  39. ^ "British certifications – Nathan Evans". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 14 April 2023. Type Nathan Evans in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  40. ^ "Singles Accreditations Report - March 2024" (PDF). Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved 18 April 2024.
  41. ^ "Ultratop − Goud en Platina – singles 2021". Ultratop. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 October 2022.
  42. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Nathan Evans)" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. Retrieved 30 June 2023.
  43. ^ "Sverigetopplistan – Nathan Evans" (in Swedish). Sverigetopplistan. Retrieved 3 February 2024.
  44. ^ "Austrian certifications – Nathan Evans" (in German). IFPI Austria. Retrieved 1 October 2022.
  45. ^ "The Official Swiss Charts and Music Community: Awards (Nathan Evans)". IFPI Switzerland. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 October 2022.
  46. ^ "Ring Ding (A Scotsman's Story) – single by Nathan Evans". Apple Music. 8 October 2021. Retrieved 9 October 2021.
  47. ^ "It's Fridaaaay aka RELEASE DAY!!! .. Catch You When You Fall is OUT NOW!!". Twitter. 17 March 2023. Retrieved 17 March 2023.
  48. ^ "Days Of Our Lives by Nathan Evans". Popnable. 16 June 2023. Retrieved 18 June 2023.
  49. ^ "Top 100 Singles, Week Ending 26 January 2024". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 27 January 2024.

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