Filipino singers have taken the world on the edge of their seats every time they perform, and they have proven the caliber of their music and their level of performance throughout different singing competitions – American Idol, America’s Got Talent – and this time, a Filipino has once again proven it in The Voice.
Jen Vinson, a twenty-two-year-old R&B and pop singer based in Los Angeles, made the four judges of this season’s The Voice fall in love with him through his rendition of Drake’s ‘Passionfruit’ – making all of them turn for him.
When Jej was asked to introduce himself, he was proud of his Filipino lineage and said that he was ‘originally from the Philippines, but is now living in Los Angeles.’
Right after his performance, an overwhelmed Kelly Clarkson jumped out of her seat to hug the talented singer for a job well done.
Jej Vinson was born and raised in a typical Filipino family with a passion for music. He grew up singing Karaoke and was raised by his parents who are both choir singers.
At first, John Legend said that he was afraid of the direction of Jej’s performance because he said that Drake has a tendency to monotone. However, the season’s newest judge praised the young vocalist as he proved that he could take the song to new directions.
“[It was a] wild, inspired, song choice because Drake’s kinda monotone normally…but you soared, ” Legend said.
He also praised the precision of Vinson’s singing saying that it seems like he ‘he knew the note (he) wanted, picks them up from the air and hit every single one of them.’
Jej and his family moved to the United States from Davao, Philippines when he was 15 years old to look for greener pasture and a better life.
Adam Levine revealed that an outstanding run ‘just forced (their) (Adam and John) hands to pushed the button almost simultaneously.’
He warned Vinson, on the other hand, to not be ‘too perfect.’ He said that he felt like his singing is too ‘surgical,’ where the notes and the runs are perfectly placed. He promised the budding singer that if he goes with his team, he will make sure that people can feel his music.
“I want to make sure that we get to a place where people can feel you as well as they can hear you, ” Levine said.
After moving from the Philippines, Jej Vinson and his family first settled in South Dakota where he started to get interested in taking his talents to a broader reach. He continued singing in Karaoke and practiced his craft.
Meanwhile, Blake Shelton has pronounced that they are ‘looking at the winner of The Voice this season.’ He praised the talent of Jej and said that he would hate to see the artist be enclosed inside a box (referring to the idea of having a fixed musical genre).
This statement from Blake triggered a response from both Adam and Kelly. They threw passionate jabs at Blake who kept on saying that country singers should go to his team because he is a country singer.
“I win this show a lot. That’s a freakin’ fact. Period, ” Shelton exclaimed as a response to both Adam and Kelly.
‘I can win this show with you, ’ Kelly said to Jej as she tries to win the ballader’s heart. She disagreed with Adams statement that his singing felt surgical. Instead, she said that it has ‘finesse.’
Kelly then said that joining her team is the most strategic decision because she only has one male solo singers while the rest of the judges have a ‘plethora of men.’
When he was 18 years old, Jej joined an a capella competition in Los Angeles, and he made up his mind that music is indeed her calling. He and his family packed their bags up and left South Dakota to move to California where he studies music at USC and has become the former musical director of the school’s a capella group.
Jej was left with a tough decision. While Adam said that he is a ‘better singer’ than all of the four judges and Blake bragged about the times he and his team won the competition, Jej chose Kelly – a decision that will change his life, forever. /apr