The jazzy intro to Michael Bublé’s version of the classic “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved ByYou)” transcended throughout the Los Angeles theater of NBC’s “The Voice,” as charismatic business administration major senior Austin Yarton took the stage with immense swagger.
Dawning a fancy blue suit, Yarton charmed and serenaded the superstar coaches Adam Levine, Alicia Keys, Kelly Clarkson and Blake Shelton and a crowd of 250. Drawn to Yarton’s voice and wanting to be his coach, first Shelton and then Clarkson turned their chairs around. Yarton was lucky enough to choose Shelton to be his mentor.
Yarton, known on “The Voice” as Austin Giorgio, sang on “The Voice” Blind Auditions stage in October of 2017, which aired as an episode on March 5. Since the episode aired, Yarton has gained recognition online and around Geneseo for taking part in such a high profile performance show.
“How it works is you audition about five or six months before what everyone sees and you have to go through a series of things,” Yarton said. “It’s pretty heavy, lot of auditions, lot of things that go on. So when you see people who audition on the show even if they don’t get a turn get there, to be at that chance is so slim.”
While not able to divulge details on his journey on “The Voice” other than what has already aired, Yarton said that it is very different from any other audition show on television.
“‘The Voice’ is the only show that’s actually more about musicians and their craft. I will say, being on the show, it has developed me way more beyond than what I could have ever imagined,” he said.
“Going into ‘The Voice’ is very similar to going into college and you compare grades to winning the show,” he said. “You don’t go to college to get good grades, you just hope for it and five years after college no one cares about your GPA. The show’s the same deal; you want to win, it’s not your end goal, your end goal is the actual stardom afterward and knowing people afterward.”
As this season continues, Yarton shared that his true preferred style of music and personality will reveal itself. He explained that his quirkiness that was present in his blind audition will eventually blend into how he presents the genre he sings: “a blend between jazz and kind of low fi hip hop.”
Yarton’s love for jazz comes from his father, who was in a jazz band, as well as his residency in Rochester, a rich center for the music genre.
“I never considered myself a musician. I’ve always listened to old school jazz,” Yarton said. “Music really came out this time last year around January of 2017 because my family was telling me I should start singing ... so I started singing a lot of stuff, put it on YouTube, got a few gigs.”
Similarly to how he performed on “The Voice,” Yarton is very interested in developing the jazz genre into something more modern.
“I want to have my own sector in music, which again does not exist right now,” Yarton said. “You could say it’s kind of a combination of Drake and Sinatra.”
In the future, Yarton would like to develop this genre more in his hometown of Rochester.
“Rochester is the home of a form of jazz. Obviously, it starts down south, but we have the Eastman School,” Yarton said. “I would love if I become super successful ... if it’s possible I would love to bring it back here.”
Apart from his appearance on “The Voice,” Yarton has also made other tremendous strides. He was the student speaker at TEDx in 2017 and started an online bike company, Bikelyf, which sells bike to Rochester and Geneseo.
Despite these developments, however, he still plans to pursue a career in music.
“Now that I have this window that’s very narrow and very slim, and a great opportunity to fail, I’m going to jump through it,” he said. “I’m definitely going to force my music into the industry whether I get a record deal or whether I have to take out business loans and do it myself. I’m going to do it because I know people will like it. It’s nice music.”
His advice to others with the same dream of auditioning for “The Voice” and following their love for music is very similar.
“Do it. If you wait, don’t do it because you’re not going make it. Like you should just go and do it,” Yarton said.
Yarton’s journey on “The Voice” continues in the next episodes, set to air Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on NBC.