GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO/KJCT)-- Tanner gave up competitive baseball to follow his dreams of becoming a singer, and it looks like it’s paid off. He just won one of Western Colorado’s biggest singing competitions.
“I started singing when I was 5, cause my dad plays music so I just started playing with him. When I was little he would just call me up on stage,” said Tanner Smolinski, Junior at Fruita Monument High School.
16-year-old Tanner Smolinski competed on the San Juan’s version of ‘The Voice’.
“It started out with 24 people, and then it went down to 12 then 4 then the winner,” said Smolinski.
Being the youngest contestant in Montrose he wouldn’t let his nerves get the best of him.
“I was scared because I wanted to win,” said Smolinski.
After a month of practicing from the first audition to the final, he ended up winning the entire competition.
“You have a coach and he helps you out with some things but ultimately the crowd votes on who wins so it’s pretty cool,” said Smolinski.
Tanner sings a variety of different styles but his favorites are songs by Elvis, Johnny Cash, Jason Mraz, and Vance Joy.
“The feeling of being on stage and just doing well and just killing a song is just unbelievable, it just a great thing,” said Smolinski.
He sings at school talent shows, cafes, events, and maybe even the actual Voice in Hollywood one day.
“It would be a cool experience I would love to do that, that would be something I would really like to do,” said Smolinski.
Since winning The Voice of the San Juan’s, Tanner says his career has started to take off. More and more people are asking him to sing at events and restaurants. Tanner is so talented, it only took him a week to learn the ukulele.
Tanner will be playing later this month at Junction Square Pizza.