Who Is Jej Vinson? 10 Facts About The ‘Voice’ Favorite
One of the standout contestants on this season of The Voice is 22-year-old Jej Vinson. The talented Filipino immigrant sang Drake’s “Passionfruit” in his blind audition and turned all four coaches’ chairs, ultimately joining Team Kelly Clarkson.
This week, Jej went up against Beth Griffith-Manley in the Battle Rounds and won to keep his spot on Kelly’s team, with Beth getting saved by John Legend. With Jej’s performances going viral and fans wondering if he has what it takes to win the show, let’s take a look at 10 facts you might not have known about him.
1. Jej Vinson was born in the Philippines.
Jej grew up in Davao, Philippines. He got his love of music from his family, who sang in a choir. It inspired Jej to start singing karaoke. Although his English sounds great on The Voice, Jej admitted on Instagram that his “intonation … is kind of all over the place,” and he still messes up grammar sometimes.
2. He and his family immigrated to South Dakota.
According to local South Dakota news, Jej and his family moved to Flandreau when he was 15 years old. His parents had apparently been approached by an employer who saw their choir perform and was based in the states.
3. Jej fell in love with a cappella as a teenager.
According to his show bio, Jej attended a summer camp called A Cappella Academy in Los Angeles when he was 18 years old. He said on Twitter that the experience “changed my life.” He made the move to California, and his family followed. Jej continues to support the camp, recently appearing on a livestream show.
4. Jej attends USC and studies music.
“I study popular music performance at USC,” he said in a recent interview, explaining that it made him interested in arranging songs and making them his own. He was even the music director of the school’s a cappella group, the SoCal VoCals.
5. He performed for the Obamas.
In 2015, the SoCal VoCals were invited to sing for President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama at a holiday reception for White House staff. “It was truly an unreal experience, but what made it so special was that I got to share it with these people,” Jej wrote on Instagram.
6. The Voice asked him to audition.
Usually, we imagine Voice hopefuls seeking the show out on their own. In Jej’s case, a casting producer saw him perform background vocals in Los Angeles and asked him to send in videos. The rest is history.
7. His audition racked up 1 million views in 24 hours.
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart!” Jej wrote on Twitter after he realized his audition had hit the milestone. The video now has over 5 million views, and his battle video from earlier this week has over 1 million views as well.
8. His second choice for a coach was John Legend.
If Kelly wasn’t available, Jej told a fan on Twitter that he would have picked John Legend, or Jennifer Hudson if she was still a coach. However, he seems very happy on Kelly’s team, praising how she treats her team members, as well as her great hugs.
9. Jej likes to eat greasy food before singing.
A Twitter fan asked what Jej’s go-to meal is before a performance, and he says greasy food helps him, including Panda Express and Lay’s potato chips. Maybe there’s something to it, as American Idol contestant Johanna Jones bonded with Katy Perry over their similar chip consumption.
10. You can watch Jej perform on his Instagram.
Jej has posted several performances on his account, including a cover of “Christmas Time Is Here” in which he harmonizes with himself. He’s also sung “Officially Missing You” by Tamia and “The Middle” by Zedd, Maren Morris, and Grey.