The 21-year-old singer is unlike any star out there
The Voice won’t crown a champion until Tuesday, but Jordan Smith has already made it.
“Every week I am just shocked,” he told Parade of the news. “It still doesn’t seem real. I don’t think it will ever become normal. Some artists work their whole life for chances like this. I never imagined a year ago that I would be here and doing this and be so successful. Every week, I am surprised and blown away, and humbled by it, honestly.”
But there’s a lot more to Smith than his powerful pipes and accomplishment. Read on to learn more about the man behind the music.
1. He Is a Sweet Boyfriend
You may have fallen in love with Smith’s voice, but his heart was taken before he entered the spotlight. The singer has been dating Kristen Denny, who is also from Kentucky. Theirs isn’t a casual romance – Denny flew all the way to California to support Smith at his blind audition.
As his journey on the show continues, the pair stays in touch with the help of technology. Denny recently shared a screen grab of their adorable FaceTime session on Twitter, writing, “When your boyfriend is on the other side of the country, this is what #datenight consists of! @JordanSmithLive.”
Despite having a hectic rehearsal schedule, Smith was sure to send his love a sweet gift on her birthday this month. “A new @katespadeny bag earlier this week and these beautiful roses delivered to work today,” Denny wrote of her presents on Instagram. “I’m definitely a lucky girl! Blessed to have a wonderful man in my life who is so good to me! I love you, sweetheart!!”
The boyfriend and girlfriend already have a cherished tradition, which Denny wrote about on Instagram last Christmas: “We’ve gotten [an ornament] every Christmas we’ve been together! This one may just be my favorite!!”
2. He Wasn’t Picked for the Show After His First Audition
According to the Lexington Herald-Leader newspaper, Smith’s success on The Voice was delayed. He showed up for an open audition for season 8, but it wasn’t meant to be. Fortunately, he stayed in touch with producers and gave it another go for season 9.
“That was a huge sign to me that it was something I should do, because the timing wasn’t perfect,” he told the newspaper. “I felt like it was a door that God had opened, because I didn’t go seeking it out.”
3. He Is Okay with Being Mistaken for a Woman
“I get called ma’am on the phone all the time,” Smith said during his blind audition. Jokes aside, he is serious about being an inspiration to others.
“On the show, they really highlighted the fact that I don’t look like I sound, which is OK with me, because that’s the message that I want to get across; that it’s okay to be different than people expect you to be and not fit the mold,” Smith told the Lexington Herald-Leader. “We live in a world that is hurting, where people disagree over things that don’t matter and things that are on the outside.”
4. He Has Never Been Trick-or-Treating
“But I’ll dress up and watch Charlie Brown and hand out candy, but nobody would come to our house for the candy, so I’d eat all of it,” Jordan joked in an interview PEOPLE in November.
He added, “I’ve dressed as Scooby Doo. My girlfriend and I dressed up as the Fox and the Hound – that was fun, but I have never been out trick-or-treating.”
5. He Has Already Performed for President Obama
Well, sort of. As a member the Lee Singers, a touring group from his school Lee University, Smith performed at the second inauguration of President Barack Obama in 2013. He also got the chance to perform at the Vatican, one of several venues that gave him experience before The Voice.
Smith still might have some time to join his troupe again – he is still a student at Lee University, although he took a semester off from his senior year to focus on the competition.
•Reporting by CHRISTINA DUGAN