By Geoff Herbert
HOLLYWOOD, Calif. — A New York State Trooper from the Mohawk Valley continues to advance on “The Voice.”
Tom Nitti, a 31-year-old singer from New Hartford, N.Y., won in the Battle Rounds Tuesday night with his performance of Cody Johnson’s “Til You Can’t.” Nitti’s soulful voice impressed judge Reba McEntire, beating out fellow Team Reba member Dylan Carter.
“Dylan and Tom could be the next Brooks & Dunn,” McEntire said. “They are so talented but I had to choose Tom because he has continued to impress me. I love his soul country. It just made my heart feel good.”
Nitti almost didn’t make it past the “The Voice” Blind Auditions last month, but got a last-second chair turn from McEntire with his country twist on Stevie Wonder’s classic ““Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m Yours).” Fellow judges John Legend, Gwen Stefani and Niall Horan all said they liked his unique voice, featuring a soulful “twang,” and were glad he was on Reba’s team.
“Tom, I keep getting blown away because to emote the way you did at the end, it just kept building and building,” Stefani said on Tuesday’s episode.
Nitti, who grew up in an Italian/Puerto Rican family that listened to a wide range of musical genres, previously auditioned for “The Voice” eight years ago. He withdrew when he was accepted to the Police Academy program for New York State Troopers at the same time, according to his grandfather.
Tom Nitti entered the military after graduating high school and served in Afghanistan, where he sustained injuries and was awarded the Purple Heart. After his military service, Tom followed in his father’s footsteps and joined law enforcement, becoming a NYS Trooper in 2015. Nitti now trains new troopers at the New York State Police Academy and performs weekly, including the “National Anthem” at official events, while raising two children.