Avery Dixon Is the First Star to Snatch Up a Golden Buzzer on Season 17 of 'AGT' — Meet the Saxophonist

Saxophonist Avery Dixon swept the 'America's Got Talent' judges off their feet during the Season 17 premiere. Read on to find out more about the star.

Leila Kozma - Author

Jun. 1 2022, Published 12:52 p.m. ET

Season 17 of America's Got Talent kicked off with a brand-new episode on Tuesday, May 31, 2022.

Featuring judges Simon Cowell, Heidi Klum, Sofia Vergara, and Howie Mandel as well as host Terry Crews, the episode featured rare talents like the Pack Drumline, a Chicago-based formation; Celia Munoz, a trained opera singer and ventriloquist; and Avery Dixon, an Atlanta native who picked up the saxophone after experiencing bullying in elementary school.

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Saxophonist Avery Dixon made his debut on 'AGT' in Season 17, immediately earning high praise.

Born in Atlanta in October 2000, Avery Dixon took up an active interest in music at an extraordinarily young age. As he revealed in the Season 17 premiere of AGT, playing the saxophone has helped him overcome numerous adversities — including the bullying he experienced in elementary school because of his voice and knots on his head. (Avery was born prematurely).

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"At the time I picked up the saxophone, I was getting bullied in elementary school. My voice sounds a little bit different and I looked a little bit different too and my elementary school nickname was Hammerhead because I had these knots in my head because I'm premature. I was born at one pound, eight ounces, and my vocal cords don't close all the way, so it makes my voice sound really airy. Students were so negative about my voice."

"I was in such a dark place I actually wanted to commit suicide. When you're in that mindset, the only thing you want to do is quit. [...] That's when I actually started learning how to play," Avery added.

As he pledged, he would get a better place for his mom and brother — one where they can be as loud as they would like to be. As he explained, they had incidents with their neighbors — and someone had called the police because he was practicing.

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"I'd want to give my mom and brother a space where we can actually live as loud as you want to be because I can't exactly practice where I live now. Somebody had called the cops on me before I flew out. I was trying to practice. They called the cops, the cops came banging on the door, they were like, 'You need to be quiet,'" he explained. "My goal with the music, with this, is to be able to do the thing I love, and if I can do that, I will have found my purpose for being on AGT."

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After the brief interview, Avery proceeded to deliver a mind-blowing performance that immediately received a standing ovation. In fact, Avery earned the first Golden Buzzer in Season 17 of AGT, cementing his place as a power player in the competition.

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Who are Avery Dixon's parents? His mom, Lisa, watched the performance from the sidelines with 'AGT' host Terry Crews.

Lisa, Avery's mom, was also present during the taping of the Season 17 premiere of AGT.

And, as it turns out, the love of music might run in the Dixon family. According to Hollywood Life, Avery's great-grandfather was saxophonist Maxwell Davis.

As of now, there isn't any public information on Avery's dad.

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Avery Dixon previously made headlines by playing music for his quarantining grandmothers.

During the COVID-19 pandemic in April 2020, Avery decided to brave the outside world and play music for both of his quarantining grandmothers. CBS46 featured the lovely interactions in a news segment.

"I have such a loving family; I'm really blessed," his maternal grandmother, Shelby Cross, said in the video.

"Music is like a foreign language when words just are't enough," Avery mentioned in another part of the segment. He added: "With the bad there's also good; that's kind of what the sax is for me, it's my share of good."

You can catch more of Avery when new episodes of AGT air Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST on NBC.

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