He’s been described as a “Hank Williams lookalike.”
And as an “equal parts subdued and assertive” singer who’s “no stranger to mixing genres” (that one by no less an authority than Rolling Stone magazine).
One thing pretty everyone can agree on, though: We want to know more about Alexander, the Georgia-bred cowboy hat-wearing, guitar playing crooner who last week conquered “The Voice’s ” blind auditions with his countrified version of Cher’s dance tune “Believe”(”That was the single craziest thing I ever heard,” judge Adam Levine said after spinning his chair around to claim Alexander for his team):
He was born in Atlanta and grew up mostly in Buford and Flowery Branch.“Growing up in a quiet southern town made me appreciate country music on a fundamental level,” Alexander recently told the Gainesville Times. “The town is really rich with southern charm, hardworking folks and a sense of community, which in a lot of ways is the root of country music.”
His background’s a musical melting pot of everything from rock to country to punk to opera. Growing up, Alexander listened to Garth Brooks, but also the Eagles, reports the AJC’s Rodney Ho:
“His parents recall at age two watching him emulate a fiddle lick to Brooks’ Callin’ Baton Rouge. His dad was an operatic tenor and music minister so Andrea Bocelli was a regular audio fixture in his home. As a teen, he went through a punk music phase after watching skateboarding videos.”
After Flowery Branch High School (where he was in chorus, jazz band and theater) he and some friends formed an alternative country band called “Young America.” They played The Masquerade, Vinyl and Eddie’s Attic in Atlanta. You can listen to and download for free one of their songs, “Don’t Turn Me Away” here.
He moved to Nashville in 2014 in hopes of furthering his musical career. “Everyone was super open and wanted to help me out,” Alexander, who’s single, told Ho. He performed at open mic nights and even before “The Voice,” had started making his mark there: Last month, readers named him winner in the Folk/Americana category of TheDeli’s ( “Emerging music from your local scene”) “Best of Nashville” competition.
He’s not a superstar . . . yet. Yes, Alexander is moving on to the next round on “The Voice,” which he auditioned for last summer in Atlanta. But he still has to get his guitar playing hands dirty in order to make ends meet. “Mostly odd jobs here and there to supplement music,” he told the Gainesville Times; in fact, the week before his stunning “Voice” debut he’d done some construction and painting day jobs in Nashville.