American Idol’s latest “Platinum Ticket” contestant was wowing Metro Vancouver-area crowds with his singing 10 years ago, long before his acclaimed performance on the television show Sunday (Feb. 19).
Tyson Venegas, 17, impressed judges Katy Perry, Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan with his rendition of Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind” over the weekend, earning a special pass to the Hollywood round of the contest.
The judges were floored by Venagas’ vocals.
“You sang notes and runs that I haven’t felt in my body in a long time, and I felt so connected. I felt alive,” Perry raved.
“He’s claiming to be 17 years old but he’s performing like a 45-year-old,” Ritchie added.
In Surrey a decade ago, as a seven-year-old sensation, Tyson won the 2013 BC Junior Talent Search contest at Cloverdale Rodeo & Country Fair.
Many of those in the audience figured he’d be a star one day, after hearing his version of the R&B classic “Route 66.”
Video of the song is posted on the Now newspaper’s Youtube channel.
A year later, in 2014, Tyson sang “O Canada” during Surrey’s Canada Day celebration in Cloverdale.
On his Facebook page this week, Tyson thanked the three judges for sending him to the Hollywood round of American Idol.
“I hit the jackpot!” he exclaimed.