THE postman who kicked off the viral sea shanty trend on TikTok has quit his day job to pursue a career in music.

Nathan Evans, 26, from Airdrie, North Lanarkshire, has been singing sea shanties and other covers of songs on the video-sharing social network since July 2020, but his rendition of The Wellerman in December that went worldwide.

With more than 7.7 million views and celebrities such as Andrew Lloyd Webber, Gary Barlow and Ronan Keating joining in on the trend, Evans has capitalised on his recent viral fame and signed a deal with a major record label.

On a post on his TikTok profile on Wednesday night, Evans confirmed that he had signed a deal with Polydor Records that counts the likes of Lana Del Rey, Guns n Roses and Dr Dre amongst their already signed artists.

In the post, Evans said he would be releasing a single with Polydor, adding that single, currently in the works, would be a cover of The Wellerman.

 Speaking about his decision to make the career-change, Evans told the PA news agency: "On the Friday (January 15) I was like, ‘Right, I need to make a change here’, because I was too busy on my phone looking at emails and trying to post letters. I was like, ‘This is not sustainable’.

“The future will be quite bright I hope. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, it’s never going to come around again.

“Hopefully if nothing comes of it then I can go back and continue being a postman, but I thought at the minute I’ll seize it and see what happens.”

His rendition of The Wellerman has since been added to by singers around the world, with basses adding their rich tones in one version, and Lord Lloyd-Webber providing musical accompaniment in another, leaving him “speechless for about two days”.

As for why the sea shanty has resonated with millions, the Scot said he believes his accent adds to the song, but also said he believes it can act as a tonic during the coronavirus pandemic.

“Back in the day when the shanties were sung, it was to bring everybody together, to keep them all in time, to keep the morale high,” he said.

“So I think it’s just kind of brought it into this day and age. Everybody’s at home, they’re low, they’re not feeling too happy and then this song comes on and everybody’s joining in.

“It kind of brings everybody together, it makes it feel like you’re all united. Especially seeing how creative everybody can be with it, there’s people with violins joining in, there’s accordions.”

He is not the only Scot to have had their musical abilities make a dramatic change to their life on TikTok.

Evans recently dueted a song that garnered user Natidreddd more than 6.6m views back in December.

Natidreddd covers a variety of songs on her profile but has been most renowned for her Scots folk covers and has been working with singer-songwriter Newton Faulkner on a virtual live event and has been able to release her own original music.

Talking on the impact the app had on her life, Natidreddd said: "Before this, I didn't have any music out and I wasn't getting booked for gigs and now I have two singles out and people all over the world are asking me to sing at their weddings."

Another Scot using musical talents to break through the noise on TikTok is 20-year-old Jared Rowan, who also used the app - via his account "littlestchicken" - to get creative during the coronavirus lockdown.

The actor from Stranraer one day hopes to use his comedy and musical talents to entertain people on the big screen.

He told the Daily Record last year: "My dream is actually to work in daft wee sketches or Scottish comedy so it’s been nice just to enjoy that on a social media platform and it’s just amazing that everyone’s responding so well to it and enjoying it with me, it’s a lovely wee boost. I had a massive creative block, totally missing being in a rehearsal rooms and creating things with loads of different people so it’s been so refreshing to have a wee creative release."