WALLA WALLA, Wash. — For 11 years, Charles Smith managed Rock & Roll bands like The Raveonettes and toured around Europe with The Cardigans.

A life-long lover of wine, Smith found himself in Walla Walla during a roadtrip in 1999. He bought a house and planted his future on five acres surrounding his house.

"I thought i'd make a thousand or 2,000 cases of wine a year and have a small town life," said Smith. "It turned out quite differently." 

Smith, a self-taught winemaker, has won several awards over the years, including 2014 Winemaker of the Year from Wine Enthusiast and 2010 Winemaker of the Year from Seattle Magazine.

With an unconventional background Smith says rock and roll taught him a few things that have helped in his new career.

"If you want to do it, pick it up and just go for it," said Smith. "All I do is focus on what I'm doing and therefore the message is pure, it's honest, and it's always good spirited."

RELATED: Award-winning wine at Seattle's Charles Smith Wines Jet City

Charles Smith also has a tasting room in Seattle with excellent views of Boeing Field runways and Mount Rainier. Jet City opened in 2015 as the largest urban winery on the west coast.

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