Interview with AleXa

TV Interview!

"American Song Contest" winner AleXa on finals night 5/9/22

Interview with AleXa of “American Song Contest” on NBC by Suzanne 5/9/22

After a few months of this music competition show, a winner was finally chosen! K-Pop singer AleXa of Oklahoma took the award for best American Song.  We interviewed her after the show. She was very happy… as you will see in the video. I’ll admit she wasn’t my top favorite, but I’m glad she won because she has a lot of talent and a good song.

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AleXa with Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson on "American Song Contest" on NBCAmerica’s biggest live entertainment event has arrived! Based on the worldwide phenomenon “Eurovision Song Contest,” organized for 65 years by the European Broadcasting Union and watched by 200 million viewers annually, this amazing musical spectacular combines the competitive spirit of rooting for your favorite sports team with the joy of watching a beloved singing performance.

In the U.S. version of the international megahit, “American Song Contest” will feature live original musical performances, representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital, competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. The 56 artists span a wide range of performers – from undiscovered talent, up-and-coming new artists, and rising stars to established and legendary icons. An incredible solo artist, duo, group or band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America.

Hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, the eight-week live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

“American Song Contest” is executive produced by Propagate’s Ben Silverman and Howard T. Owens, alongside Audrey Morrissey, Amanda Zucker, Kyra Thompson and Gregory Lipstone as well as American Song Contest, Inc.’s Anders Lenhoff, Christer Björkman, Peter Settman and Ola Melzig. Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson also serve as executive producers.

The series is produced by Propagate in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio, a division of Universal Studio Group, and American Song Contest, Inc.

Hashtag: #AmericanSongContest

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Grand Final” Episode 108 -- Pictured: AleXa (OK) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)Oklahoma: AleXa

State: Oklahoma
Singer’s name: AleXa
Hometown: Tulsa, Oklahoma
Resident: Seoul, South Korea

Proud to represent the state where she was born and raised until the age of 21, Alex Christine, known professionally as AleXa (알렉사), is a K-pop singer, dancer and songwriter who grew up in Tulsa. A lifelong dancer, AleXa was first drawn to K-pop because of its strong performance identity. After nearly a million fan votes determined her the winner of online talent competition Rising Legends, she was one of the 96 chosen to participate in “Produce 48,” the most competitive audition show in Korea. In 2019, AleXa made her multilingual K-pop debut with “Bomb,” which has received nearly 22 million views to date and hit #7 on Billboard’s World Digital Song Sales chart. A year later AleXa released extended plays “Do Or Die” and “Decoherence,” garnering wins for two of Korea’s most prestigious awards. In 2021, AleXa released Y2K-inspired “ReviveR” with dance track “Xtra,” performed the national anthem for the Los Angeles Dodgers and became the first K-pop artist to host a fan meeting in the metaverse within the action shooter game Scavengers.

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AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Grand Final” Episode 108 -- Pictured: AleXa (OK) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Interview with “American Song Contest” performers

TV Interview!

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Semi Finals Part 2” Episode 107— Pictured: (l-r) Snoop Dogg, Kelly Clarkson -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Interview with performers of “American Song Contest” on NBC by Suzanne 5/2/22

This was the virtual red carpet interview for this show’s second semi-finals night. Those of us in the press watch the live show, and then they bring out each of the performers for us to chat with. We typically get one question per performer, although sometimes we can slip in a second one if we’re quick. Sadly, Michael Bolton was not available tonight. We did get everyone else, though. Anyway, while I watch the shows, I always write down their name, where they’re from, and then any possible questions to ask. If I can’t think of any, then I go online and do research. It can be tough sometimes to come up with a question on the spot, even though I’ve been doing this for 14 years. I prefer to think of an unusual or specific question rather than just a generic one. I hope you enjoy these videos! I had a blast. Don’t forget to vote for your favorites Sunday night!

Broderick Jones

He’s definitely one of my favorites because of his great voice. He seemed really nice here, too. To be honest, they all do! They all are so excited and have great energy.

 

Grant Knoche

He’s a great performer and has been performing for a very long time, even at his young age. I think he will go far, regardless of what happens here.

 

Tenelle of American Samoa

She is very enthusiastic and proud of her heritage. I loved hearing her talk about what she was wearing and what it means to her family.

 

John Morgan of North Carolina

This guy is a good singer and songwriter, and he’s already working with big name stars. I don’t think he quite has the star power or song to win this competition, though.

 

Chloe Fredericks of North Dakota

She is very likable, and she seems to have a great life where she balances out work and home life. She’s a good rocker chick!

 

Christian Pagán of Puerto Rico

He is my favorite, and I hope he wins! I really love his song, his energy, his performing, and his story.

 

ENISA of New York

She has a ton of energy and obviously loves what she does, even down to picking out the right costume. She has a great New York attitude, too.

 

Stela Cole of Georgia

This girl is beautiful, but she has a goofiness that makes her more approachable than most beautiful women.  Perhaps that’s because she has a sports background. I’m surprised she isn’t a model, too.

 

Tyler Braden of Tennessee

This guy is a very down-to-earth kind of cowboy dude. I hope he didn’t mind my asking him about wearing his baseball caps.

 

Sweet Taboo of California

It’s funny that these girls are from California because it seems like many of the performers are from more than one state. For instance, Tenelle is really from California, not American Samoa. Tyler Braden is really from Alabama, not Tennesee. I guess they fit the people in where they need them. It was fun to chat with these women and get to know them a little bit. I’m not really into rap music, but they seem like solid performers.

 

MORE INFO:

American Song Contest

Mondays on NBC (8-10 p.m. ET)

America’s biggest live entertainment event has arrived! Based on the worldwide phenomenon “Eurovision Song Contest,” organized for 65 years by the European Broadcasting Union and watched by 200 million viewers annually, this amazing musical spectacular combines the competitive spirit of rooting for your favorite sports team with the joy of watching a beloved singing performance.In the U.S. version of the international megahit, “American Song Contest” will feature live original musical performances, representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital, competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. The 56 artists span a wide range of performers – from undiscovered talent, up-and-coming new artists, and rising stars to established and legendary icons. An incredible solo artist, duo, group or band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America.Hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, the eight-week live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

“American Song Contest” is executive produced by Propagate’s Ben Silverman and Howard T. Owens, alongside Audrey Morrissey, Amanda Zucker, Kyra Thompson and Gregory Lipstone as well as American Song Contest, Inc.’s Anders Lenhoff, Christer Björkman, Peter Settman and Ola Melzig. Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson also serve as executive producers.

The series is produced by Propagate in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio, a division of Universal Studio Group, and American Song Contest, Inc.

Hashtag: #AmericanSongContest

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AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “Semi-finals” Episode 107 -- Pictured: (l-r) Snoop Dogg, Kelly Clarkson -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Interview with Grant Knoche of Texas

TV Interview!

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Grant Knoche (TX) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Interview with Grant Knoche of “American Song Contest” on NBC by Thane 5/5/22

I was very happy to get this interview with Grant. He does such a great job on ASC and is very popular with fans (and with Kelly Clarkson, with whom he shares the home state of Texas!).  Please vote for him if you like his music.

 

Here are the questions I asked:

How does it feel representing Texas in a live TV show?

What does “Mr. Independent” mean to you?

What are the challenges of being a young solo singer?

Why did you join Kidz Bop and what was that like?

As a solo artist, what inspires your music?

These days collaborations are popular. With whom would you want to collaborate?

Is there anything in particular that gets you in the mood to write songs?

What’s your view of modern pop music?

Do you feel that streaming services fairly compensate musicians?

I have watched your latest music videos. How do you come up with ideas for them?

Where can people follow you?

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AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Grant Knoche (TX) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)Texas: Grant Knoche

State: Texas
Singer’s name: Grant Knoche
Hometown: Frisco, TX
Resident: Los Angeles, CA

Grant Knoche, 19, taught himself to write and produce in his childhood bedroom and he hasn’t looked back since. Grant’s synth-driven, deep bass and intimate pop songs have all been written and produced by him. On his way to gathering over 900,000 followers, Grant has spent most of his life on the road performing more than 160 shows across America, including on “Today,” at Radio City Music Hall, Woodstock and many other locales. Grant’s debut EP, “Color Me Blue,” has been featured on multiple top playlists and he was recently called out by Ones to Watch as “One of today’s finest rising pop stars.” Grant’s excited to represent his home state of Texas.

American Song Contest

Mondays on NBC (8-10 p.m. ET)

 

America’s biggest live entertainment event has arrived! Based on the worldwide phenomenon “Eurovision Song Contest,” organized for 65 years by the European Broadcasting Union and watched by 200 million viewers annually, this amazing musical spectacular combines the competitive spirit of rooting for your favorite sports team with the joy of watching a beloved singing performance.

In the U.S. version of the international megahit, “American Song Contest” will feature live original musical performances, representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital, competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. The 56 artists span a wide range of performers – from undiscovered talent, up-and-coming new artists, and rising stars to established and legendary icons. An incredible solo artist, duo, group or band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America.

Hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, the eight-week live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

“American Song Contest” is executive produced by Propagate’s Ben Silverman and Howard T. Owens, alongside Audrey Morrissey, Amanda Zucker, Kyra Thompson and Gregory Lipstone as well as American Song Contest, Inc.’s Anders Lenhoff, Christer Björkman, Peter Settman and Ola Melzig. Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson also serve as executive producers.

The series is produced by Propagate in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio, a division of Universal Studio Group, and American Song Contest, Inc.

Hashtag: #AmericanSongContest

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AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- Episode 103 Contestant Gallery -- Pictured: Grant Knoche (TX) -- (Photo by: Chris Haston/NBC)

Interviews with “American Song Contest” performers

TV Interview!

"American Song Contest" April 25 on NBC

Interview with performers of “American Song Contest” on NBC by Thane 4/25/22

I was at this virtual press event with some of the semi-finalists for this show. I watched the first semi-final episode. My favorites were Riker and Jonah, but all the contestants shone this night.

Riker Lynch of Colorado

Sadly, the jury didn’t like him. He’s very upbeat, so I asked him what his motivation is for wanting to spread joy.


Jonah Prill of Montana

His style is more country, so I asked him what he liked about country music.


Ada Leann of Michigan

Ada is the youngest performer; I asked her what the challenges are of being a young singer.


AleXa of Oklahoma

I asked her if she’s inspired by any K pop artists. I liked her tune. I really should listen to more K Pop.


MARi of New Hampshire

I loved her song and asked her what got her in the mood to write such an inspirational song.


Hueston of Rhode Island

I assumed that Hueston likes to reach people through his music, so I asked how it feels to know that he’s reaching people.


Ni/Co of Alabama

I asked whether both of them always writes songs for their duo or whether just one of them writes the songs.


Jared Lee of Massaghusetts

Since his song was called “Shameless,” I asked him whatever the most shameless thing he’s done (that’s he’s comfortable sharing).


Allen Stone of Washington

He wrote his song after becoming a father, so I asked him what his family thinks of his song.


Ryan Charles of Wyoming

His style was influenced by hip hop, so I wanted to know what his favorite hip hop jams were.


Jordan Smith of Kentucky

I felt that “Sparrow” was a powerful song and wanted to know what it meant to him.


MORE INFO:

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST — “Semi-finals” Episode 106

America’s biggest live entertainment event has arrived! Based on the worldwide phenomenon “Eurovision Song Contest,” organized for 65 years by the European Broadcasting Union and watched by 200 million viewers annually, this amazing musical spectacular combines the competitive spirit of rooting for your favorite sports team with the joy of watching a beloved singing performance.

In the U.S. version of the international megahit, “American Song Contest” will feature live original musical performances, representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital, competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. The 56 artists span a wide range of performers – from undiscovered talent, up-and-coming new artists, and rising stars to established and legendary icons. An incredible solo artist, duo, group or band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America.

Hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, the eight-week live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

“American Song Contest” is executive produced by Propagate’s Ben Silverman and Howard T. Owens, alongside Audrey Morrissey, Amanda Zucker, Kyra Thompson and Gregory Lipstone as well as American Song Contest, Inc.’s Anders Lenhoff, Christer Björkman, Peter Settman and Ola Melzig. Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson also serve as executive producers.

The series is produced by Propagate in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio, a division of Universal Studio Group, and American Song Contest, Inc.

Hashtag: #AmericanSongContest

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AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “Semi-finals” Episode 106 -- Pictured: (l-r) Snoop Dogg, Kelly Clarkson -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Interviews with “American Song Contest” contestants 4/4/22

TV Interview!

Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson on "American Song Contest" on NBC

Interview with contestants from “American Song Contest” on NBC by Thane 4/4/22

I haven’t been press for a live event before. I also enjoy music, so I decided to cover this event. I knew of the hosts, so I was hoping to speak to at least one of them.

Watch the episode here if you missed it!

SNOOP DOGG

 

I have previously seen him at a festival in New Zealand, so I was excited to speak to him. This is probably one of the main highlights of the year for me. I asked him if he enjoyed seeing a live audience now that the pandemic is over. I regret this phrasing as the pandemic isn’t really over. There was a period when live events didn’t happen, and I was trying to reference this time. It was great to speak to him!

SABYU OF NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS

 

I could tell he values his home culture, so I wanted to incorporate the people back home in my question. I asked him what they think of his success.

NI/CO OF ALABAMA

 

On reflection, I really should have been asking more music oriented questions as I enjoy learning about music. This was the only time I really took the opportunity to do this. I asked them how do two people write a song.

ALE ZABALA OF FLORIDA

 

I instantly noticed that her performance was very pink themed. (the color, not the singer! LOL!) So I asked her how she decided on that color.

TYLER BRADEN OF TENNESSEE

 

I just thought he had so much raw emotion in his voice. I really enjoyed his singing.

NITRO NITRA OF DELAWARE

 

I really enjoyed the rhythm of her song, so I asked how she chose it.

BRITTANY PFANTZ OF LOUISIANA

 

I really enjoyed the special effects of her song, so I asked how the special effects were chosen.

GRANT KNOCHE OF TEXAS

 

He was definitely my favorite of the night. I noticed he was a really good dancer, so I asked him how long it took to learn the dance moves.

BROOKE ALEXX OF NEW JERSEY

 

I really liked her song, “I Don’t Take Pictures Anymore”. I asked her what her song meant to her.

JESSE LEPROTTI OF SOUTH CAROLINA

 

Since Jesse’s song was inspired by his mom, I was really curious to know what he told her about the song before his performance.

JUDD HOOS OF SOUTH DAKOTA

 

I was curious to know if their song “Bad Girl” was about anyone specific. Watch the video to find the answer!

We didn’t get to interview Jewel (representing Alaska) or Riker Lynch from Colorado.

Jewel did a country song. It was great hearing her on stage. I love her song, “I Love You Always Forever.”

Riker seems to be an upbeat person, and his song “Feel the Love” reflected this..I liked what he was wearing, too!

MORE INFO:

American Song Contest

Mondays on NBC (8-10 p.m. ET); Series Premiere: March 21

America’s biggest live entertainment event has arrived! Based on the worldwide phenomenon “Eurovision Song Contest,” organized for 65 years by the European Broadcasting Union and watched by 200 million viewers annually, this amazing musical spectacular combines the competitive spirit of rooting for your favorite sports team with the joy of watching a beloved singing performance.

In the U.S. version of the international megahit, “American Song Contest” will feature live original musical performances, representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital, competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. The 56 artists span a wide range of performers – from undiscovered talent, up-and-coming new artists, and rising stars to established and legendary icons. An incredible solo artist, duo, group or band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America.

Hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, the eight-week live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

“American Song Contest” is executive produced by Propagate’s Ben Silverman and Howard T. Owens, alongside Audrey Morrissey, Amanda Zucker, Kyra Thompson and Gregory Lipstone as well as American Song Contest, Inc.’s Anders Lenhoff, Christer Björkman, Peter Settman and Ola Melzig. Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson also serve as executive producers.

The series is produced by Propagate in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio, a division of Universal Studio Group, and American Song Contest, Inc.

Hashtag: #AmericanSongContest

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Snoop Dogg -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Snoop Dogg

Executive Producer/Host, “American Song Contest”

A multi-platinum artist, actor, philanthropist and entertainment icon, Snoop Dogg has reigned for nearly three decades as an unparalleled force, raising the bar as an award-winning entertainer and globally recognized entrepreneur. Snoop defines entertainment history. He has released 21 studio albums, sold over 40 million albums worldwide, reached No. 1 countless times on Billboard charts internationally and received 20 Grammy nominations.

A California native, Snoop has also appeared in numerous films, such as “Dolemite Is My Name,” “The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run,” “The Addams Family,” “Beach Bum,” “Starsky & Hutch,” “Soul Plane” and the Oscar-winning drama “Training Day,” among others. He has also produced several TV shows and films, including Vice’s “Reincarnated,” “Mac & Dean Go to High School” and “Hood of Horror” through his production company, Snoopadelic Films. He made his mark in television when he garnered an Emmy Award nomination as executive producer for the hit VH1 show “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner.” Snoop was also the executive producer of the Netflix show “Coach Snoop,” “GGN: Double G News,” MTV’s “Mary + Jane” and the TNT game show “Joker’s Wild,” which he also hosted.

Most recently, Snoop has hosted and produced several projects through his Snoopadelic films, including two Peacock originals – “2021 and Done” alongside Kevin Hart, a hilarious retrospective on the year that began with so much promise; and “Olympic Highlights with Kevin Hart and Snoop Dogg,” recapping the Olympics’ most impressive displays of athleticism and the moments that didn’t go as planned.

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Sabyu (CNMI) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Northern Mariana Islands: Sabyu

State: Northern Mariana Islands
Singer’s name: Sabyu
Hometown: Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands
Resident: Olympia, WA

Matthew Sablan, known musically as Sabyu, is a Pacific Islander singer, songwriter, producer, engineer, artist mentor and multi-instrumentalist. He is known for his eclectic music style combining island roots and Stateside influences alike, blending reggae, rock, soul, hip-hop, funk, jazz and world music. Sabyu mentors young artists with a Seattle-based non-profit, Totem Star, guiding aspiring youth along their own music journeys. He makes music to bring all walks of life together in the name of love, spirit and humanity, and wants to let everyone know that even if you come from a small island, you can make big waves around the world.

 

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Ni/Co (AL) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)

Alabama: Ni/Co

State: Alabama
Group name: Ni/Co
Hometown: Montgomery, AL
Resident: Los Angeles, CA

Ni/Co is a duo made up of Dani Brillhart and Colton Jones. They began gaining popularity in 2019 from their YouTube videos, which have accumulated more than 40 million views. The pop duo has had their music featured on various networks, including the CW, VH1, NBC, BET, TNT, Starz and Freeform. Their growing audience has granted them attention and opportunities to work with brands such as Google, Adobe, Volkswagen, Reese’s, Dell, Chips Ahoy, Fender and more. They have an insatiable passion to perform and pull inspiration from wanting to touch the lives of everyone who hears their music. Ni/Co is so excited to represent Alabama as that is where Colton discovered his love for music and where they played events together which helped them realize their love for performing together, thus creating Ni/Co.

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Ale Zabala (FL) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)Florida: Ale Zabala

State: Florida
Singer’s name: Ale Zabala
Hometown: Miami, FL
Resident: Parkland, FL

Alexa Zabala, known professionally as Ale Zabala, is an American singer, songwriter, musician and dancer. She’s a Latin pop artist as well as a writer for other singers and started writing when she was 13. Ale went to college for music business and met her first producer with whom she began writing all of her songs. She released her first single in 2019 and is constantly in music sessions writing for other artists and working on new musical projects. Ale is ready to represent Florida, where she went to her first concert and to school to study music.

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Tyler Braden (TN) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)Tennessee: Tyler Braden

State: Tennessee
Singer’s Name: Tyler Braden
Hometown: Montgomery, AL
Resident: Nashville, TN

Tyler Braden was inspired to pursue a musical career from a young age by legend Hank Williams. He moved from his small town in Alabama to Nashville to pursue a career in music, teaching himself guitar and working as a firefighter in the meantime. He’s now a budding star with more than 70 million streams to his name and a growing list of major tour credits. In January, Braden made his Grand Ole Opry debut setting the tone for big things to come this year, including representing Tennessee on “American Song Contest.” Tennessee is where his music career really found its footing and he says he owes it all to the state. Tyler is prepared and excited to represent it in the best way he knows how.

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Nitro Nitra (DE) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)Delaware: Nitro Nitra

State: Delaware
Singer’s name: Nitro Nitra
Hometown: Wilmington, DE
Resident: Middletown, DE

Nitro Nitra is a soul-rock singer and has been singing since before she could walk. After moving away, Nitra experienced a spiritual awakening in 2018 that led her to come back to her roots in Delaware. She first performed as Nitro Nitra in 2021 and since then has released an EP, visual album and two singles. Nitra’s goal as a musician is to create a shared experience with her fans where they can open their minds to new levels of existence and awakenings of their own. Nitro Nitra is excited to represent Delaware, where she began her musical journey.

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Brittany Pfantz (LA) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)Louisiana: Brittany Pfantz

State: Louisiana
Singer’s name: Brittany Pfantz
Hometown: DeRidder, LA
Resident: Nashville, TN

Brittany Pfantz’s music is perfumed with the sounds she was raised on: Louisiana swamp, rock, gospel, and down-in-your-gut soul. She parades her roots honestly, like the street bands of New Orleans, where she learned how to stay true to the music and to herself. Brittany just finished recording her debut EP with Grammy Award-winning producer Jacquire King and is currently shopping the project and playing shows around Nashville. She is representing Louisiana because even though she lives in Nashville, it will always be in her roots.

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Grant Knoche (TX) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)Texas: Grant Knoche

State: Texas
Singer’s name: Grant Knoche
Hometown: Frisco, TX
Resident: Los Angeles, CA

Grant Knoche, 19, taught himself to write and produce in his childhood bedroom and he hasn’t looked back since. Grant’s synth-driven, deep bass and intimate pop songs have all been written and produced by him. On his way to gathering over 900,000 followers, Grant has spent most of his life on the road performing more than 160 shows across America, including on “Today,” at Radio City Music Hall, Woodstock and many other locales. Grant’s debut EP, “Color Me Blue,” has been featured on multiple top playlists and he was recently called out by Ones to Watch as “One of today’s finest rising pop stars.” Grant’s excited to represent his home state of Texas.

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Brooke Alexx (NJ) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)New Jersey: Brooke Alexx

State: New Jersey
Singer’s name: Brooke Alexx
Hometown: Old Tappan, NJ
Resident: Nashville, TN

Pop starlet meets girl next door in Brooke Alexx – an Asian-American New Jerseyan songwriter, singer, performer, director and editor. Brooke wields her creative powers to inspire young women just as Taylor Swift inspired her to start writing songs of vulnerability and empowerment at age 13. Her magnetic melodies, paired with her ever-relatable coming-of-age lyrics, have resonated more in 2021 than any other year through a familial-focused EP. Brooke’s confidence and contagious personality oozed into 2022 on the back of her first festival performance at Lollapalooza, a brand collaboration with IKEA and a sync license in Netflix’s film “Resort to Love.”

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Jesse LeProtti (SC) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)South Carolina: Jesse LeProtti

State: South Carolina
Singer’s name: Jesse LeProtti
Hometown: Irmo, SC
Resident: Los Angeles, CA

Jesse Christopher Blocker III, known professionally as Jesse LeProtti, is known for his wide vocal range, crisp live performances and diverse music catalog that includes pop, R&B, soul, electronic and many more styles. Jesse strives to bring back “real music,” making listeners feel a sense of deja vu while keeping it 100% authentic to himself. Being from South Carolina has played a huge role in who he is today – musically and mentally. Two of his biggest musical influences, James Brown and Darius Rucker, are from South Carolina. He is proud to represent his home state as the people of South Carolina have the “go getter” and “never give up” mentality which has led him to where he is today.

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST -- “The Live Qualifiers Part 3” Episode 103 -- Pictured: Judd Hoos (SD) -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC)South Dakota: Judd Hoos

State: South Dakota
Singer’s name: Judd Hoos
Hometown: Spearfish, SD
Resident: Rapid City, SD

Judd Hoos is a rock band from the Black Hills of South Dakota. The band’s line up consists of  Andy Young, Shane Funk, Keithan Funk, Tyler Bills, and Chase Huseby. In the past 12 months, Judd Hoos has released a new EP, “Not Alone,” organized the Nashville Comes to the Black Hills songwriting camp and hosted the first-ever Judd Hoos Charity Jam. They appeared on multiple tour stops with Nashville rockers the Wild Feathers, played close to 100 Midwest clubs, theaters, festivals and fairs and even shared the stage with rock icon Billy Idol. In addition to recording new music, they have renewed a tour sponsorship deal with Remedy Brewing Company for the second straight year and collaborated on their own IPA, Hoos Joos.

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Thane Pullan and Snoop Dogg

Interviews with “American Song Contest” contestants 3/28/22

TV Interview!

American Song Contest - Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, Round 2

Interview with contestants from “American Song Contest” Round 2 on NBC by Krista 3/28/22

This was a lot of fun. I enjoy music competition series, such as my favorite, “American Idol,” so it was great to interview the contestants on the virtual red carpet right after the second qualifying round! Unfortunately, Cruz Rock of the U.S. Virgin Islands was not available.

If you missed their performances, watch them here.  Don’t forget to watch the next round, Monday, April 4th. Contestants include Jewel of Alaska – possibly the most famous of all of the legendary singers participating this season.

Michael Bolton moved on to the next round during this broadcast. You can see our interview with him here!

JONAH PRILL OF MONTANA

 

Jonah Prill was a very personable, friendly guy. I enjoyed listening to him answer the questions and talk about his song. His song Fire It Up was a great song and the feel of the song accomplished everything he wanted it to accomplish. His country music influences are Marty Robbins meets George Strait. He grew up on the old country and he is proud to follow in the footsteps of his grandfather Dean Evans.

MACY GRAY AND MAINO

 

Macy Gray is no stranger to the music scene. She has been an iconic singer/songwriter since 1999 with the release of her triple platinum album “On How Life Is.” She has been able to stay fresh and current with her abilities to write songs that relate to people today. She seems like she really enjoys the music scene and getting out there everyday and learning something from what she does and putting it to use in the next performance.

ENISA OF NEW YORK

 

Enisa from New York is full of energy and just a ball of fire. She wrote the song Greenlight and when it was presented to her to be on this show, she said she had the perfect song for this contest. She had the full performance with the dancing,music, and even the outline of her body with her mic up representing the statue of Liberty. She is a very friendly, outgoing person to talk to.

KING KYOTE OF MAINE

 

King Kyote is a recording artist from Maine who has toured extensively around the Northeast as well as around the country. He is inspired by all types of music especially the Rolling Stones and Muddy Water. He enjoys getting to share his talent with the fans around the world.

JOCELYN OF NEBRASKA

 

Jocelyn from Nebraska is a breath of fresh air. She enjoys writing songs that have positive messages and motivate and inspire. She is inspired by many artists such as Martina McBride, Ed Sheeran, and Shawn Mendez. She partners with Boys Town and Hope Squad which are suicide prevention organizations. She believes in these organizations and wants to spread the message of positivity in her music.

COURTSHIP. OF OREGON

 

Courtship. is from Oregon. Courtship is made up of a friendship between Micah Gordon and Eli Hersch who met at a gig. Their song “Million Dollar Smoothie” is fun and has lots of energy. They were happy to go first because then they could have their performance over and then relax and listen to the other competitors. Their album is due out in 2022.

BRODERICK JONES OF KANSAS

 

Broderick James is a singer/songwriter from Kansas. He wants to become the biggest artist ever to come from Kansas. He was very nice and well mannered showing an interest in the person asking the question. He put together a whole performance, with music, dancers, and the whole works. He seems very humble and a nice guy all the way around.

JORDAN SMITH OF KENTUCKY

 

Jordan Smith is a singer/songwriter from Kentucky and he is also no stranger to the music scene. He won the 9th season of The Voice. Since his win on The Voice he has released 4 albums and toured around the world. He is a very talented guy and seems to be a very friendly, humble guy as well. His song Sparrow is inspired by what we have went through these last two years. He wrote it to inspire others and it was also inspired by scripture where it talks about God feeding the sparrows and taking care of them and how much more he will take care of us. His faith inspires his songwriting and he hopes it can help inspire others.

CHLOE FREDERICKS OF NORTH DAKOTA

 

Chloe Fredericks is from North Dakota and is a singer/songwriter who was inspired by country artists such as Johnny Cash and Patsy Cline. She was raised singing with her dad and enjoyed singing songs such as gospel hymns and a lot of Johnny Cash. She has been working on this song since 2020 and she seems like a sweet young lady.

ALMIRA ZAKY OF VIRGINIA

 

Almira Zaky is from Virginia. Her career as a vocalist began when she was a young age and performed at numerous venues and festivals. She is inspired by artists such as Jojo, and Ariana Grande. She is also very proud of her Indonesian heritage. She hopes to empower young women all around the world with her music and her message.

We were able to interview Cruz Rock, but the recording didn’t come out.  He is from the Virgin Islands and is a Latin Caribbean singer, songwriter and producer. He infuses his ethnic heritage into his musical style and his music infuses several different styles including Caribbean, American and Latin.

MORE INFO:

American Song Contest

Mondays on NBC (8-10 p.m. ET); Series Premiere: March 21

WEBSITE

America’s biggest live entertainment event has arrived! Based on the worldwide phenomenon “Eurovision Song Contest,” organized for 65 years by the European Broadcasting Union and watched by 200 million viewers annually, this amazing musical spectacular combines the competitive spirit of rooting for your favorite sports team with the joy of watching a beloved singing performance.

In the U.S. version of the international megahit, “American Song Contest” will feature live original musical performances, representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital, competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. The 56 artists span a wide range of performers – from undiscovered talent, up-and-coming new artists, and rising stars to established and legendary icons. An incredible solo artist, duo, group or band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America.

Hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, the eight-week live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

“American Song Contest” is executive produced by Propagate’s Ben Silverman and Howard T. Owens, alongside Audrey Morrissey, Amanda Zucker, Kyra Thompson and Gregory Lipstone as well as American Song Contest, Inc.’s Anders Lenhoff, Christer Björkman, Peter Settman and Ola Melzig. Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson also serve as executive producers.

The series is produced by Propagate in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio, a division of Universal Studio Group, and American Song Contest, Inc.

Hashtag: #AmericanSongContest

Jonah PrillMontana: Jonah Prill

State: Montana
Singer’s name: Jonah Prill
Hometown: Billings, MT
Resident: Billings, MT

Over a million people across the country and around the world were initially roped in by Jonah Prill’s cowboy charm and simple way of life with his horses, cowboy charm and Montana lifestyle on TikTok. With his account, Jonah gained a loyal following of over a million people by 2020 to see his journey to country music stardom. From rocking school assemblies in 3rd grade, singing in choirs through europe by highschool, and joining every band in college. It wasn’t long before Prill knew he wanted to release his own music and become a household name in country music. This Casanova’s ability to infuse his country music heritage and down-home upbringing into the lyrics and melodies of his music is what might make him one of the genre’s most intriguing new artists. The grandson of country artist Dean Evans, Prill seems poised to lead a new generation into a new chapter, a chapter filled with pages of an authentic life lived by a simple man from Billings, Montana.

Macy Gray and MainoOhio: Macy Gray

State: Ohio
Singer’s name: Macy Gray
Hometown: Canton, Ohio
Resident: Los Angeles, CA

Macy Gray, the renowned artist, actor and activist from Canton, Ohio, is no stranger to saying what needs to be said and acting on her words. The musical bodies of work she has produced throughout her career are a testament to her exquisite vision and unyielding devotion to her craft. Her sleek, sultry and mature take on R&B draws from decades worth of history. Yet, her ability to still sound forward-thinking and fresh is what reaffirms and reasserts her as a signature rarity in music. Since Macy broke into the music scene in 1999 with the release of her debut triple-platinum album, “On How Life Is,” she has become a powerhouse of R&B and soul, amassed a devoted global fan base and sold more than 25 million total albums globally. A five-time Grammy Award nominee, Gray won for Best Pop Vocal Performance in 2000 for her iconic song “I Try” and has received two BRIT Awards. Macy’s latest album, “The Reset,” will be released later year. The album is primed to create further discussion about what is happening in today’s world and will help redefine what pop music should be while still providing music lovers with good times and a great message. The daughter of a math teacher and a steel factory worker, Gray grew up in a house next to the local farm – a place still near and dear to her heart where she received the encouragement to become the star she is today.

ENISANew York: ENISA

State: New York
Singer’s name: ENISA
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Resident: Brooklyn, NY

New York local ENISA has spent her whole life preparing for this journey as a first-generation American born to Albanian parents. Following her graduation from Brooklyn’s esteemed Edward R. Murrow High School, she attended Brooklyn College and continued to develop her unique musical vision. A series of distinctive cover versions exploded across social media, earning her millions of views and critical acclaim from the likes of Complex, XXL, ThisSongIsSick and more. ENISA continued to hone her diverse musical approach, infusing contemporary soul pop with Middle Eastern flourishes inspired by her own Muslim heritage. Track releases like Scridge and Genda’s viral smash “Karma (Remix)” and such solo singles as “Burn This Bridge” and “Wait for Love” showcased a spectacular knack for raw soul and endless attitude, earning her close to 16 million views and more than 3 million global streams.

King KyoteMaine: King Kyote

State: Maine
Singer’s name: King Kyote
Hometown: York, ME
Resident:  Portland, ME

King Kyote is a recording artist who has toured extensively in the Northeast as well as around the country. Harken to a night of whiskey drinking in a cabin among the Maine pines, King echoes the yells of rock ‘n’ roll’s forefathers while having a deeply rooted harmony with roots rock, singer-songwriter and folk genres. He has played at iconic venues throughout Maine and local festivals, as well as shows with many local popular acts such as Ghosts of Paul Revere, Rustic Overtones and The Mallet Brothers Band.

JocelynNebraska: Jocelyn

State: Nebraska
Singer’s name: Jocelyn
Hometown: Omaha, NE
Resident: Omaha, NE

Nebraska native Jocelyn combines her observant outlook on life, love and music to write positive songs that both motivate and inspire. She has toured with Darius Rucker, Hootie and the Blowfish and Barenaked Ladies. Jocelyn also had the great privilege to partner with Boys Town National Hotline, a Nebraska nonprofit that is dedicated to providing a safe home for children of all races and religions, and Hope Squad on the Kindness Tour, bringing her positive music and message along with suicide prevention resources to schools across the country. She was featured on “Celebrity Undercover Boss” with Rucker and “Showtime at the Apollo” with Steve Harvey. Jocelyn wants to represent Nebraska to spread the message of Boys Town as well as her love for the state.

courtship.Oregon: courtship.

State: Oregon
Band Name: courtship.
Hometown: Portland, OR
Resident: Los Angeles, CA

The best things in life usually happen by accident and the genesis of courtship. is no exception. Micah Gordon and Eli Hirsch were both session musicians in Los Angeles who met at a gig. During their downtime on the first day, they instantly realized they had something special. Micah is a classically trained jazz pianist and was influenced by Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson and Miles Davis. Eli grew up with the likes of Blink-182, Passion Pit and Weezer and together they’re the Larry David of indie pop. The boys spent the last few years on the road touring with artists such as Dayglow, Passion Pit, the Hunna, Weezer, the Wombats, Magic City Hippies and Night Riots all while garnering millions of streams. The duo’s sophomore album is set to release in 2022 and is a testament to everything that courtship. is – authentic, witty and feel-good. To courtship., Oregon is a magical place where they first started playing in bands and exploring music.

Broderick JonesKansas: Broderick Jones

State: Kansas
Singer’s name: Broderick Jones
Hometown: Little Rock, AR
Resident: Olathe, KS

Broderick Jones is a singer/songwriter known for his smooth vocals and gravitating stage performances. Broderick raked up over 35 million streams alone with no backing, helping him put a spotlight on the city and move closer towards his dream of becoming the biggest artist ever from Kansas. Broderick is thrilled to represent his state and show America that if he can make it from here, than anyone can.

Jordan SmithKentucky: Jordan Smith

State: Kentucky
Singer’s name: Jordan Smith
Hometown: Harlan, KY
Resident: Corbin, KY

Jordan Smith is a singer/songwriter best known for winning season nine of NBC’s hit reality television series “The Voice.” The Kentucky native holds the record as the highest-selling artist in “The Voice” history, dethroning Adele’s “Hello” at #1 on the iTunes charts three times during his run on the show and becoming the first artist ever to replace himself at #1 on the Christian Billboard chart. Jordan has since released four albums and toured extensively around the world, sharing the stage with artists such as Patti LaBelle, Jordin Sparks and Lionel Richie. He also wrote the song “Ashes,” performed by Celine Dion for the movie “Deadpool 2.” Being a Kentuckian is something Jordan has always been proud of and representing the state is an honor.

Chloe FredericksNorth Dakota: Chloe Fredericks

State: North Dakota
Singer’s name: Chloe Fredericks
Hometown: Halliday, ND
Resident: Halliday, ND

Chloe Fredericks grew up listening to some of country music’s great artists, including Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline and Emmylou Harris, and often receives comparisons to powerhouse singer-songwriters Adele and Amy Winehouse. Her mom would always call Chloe her “little singing birdy” and some of Chloe’s fondest memories are singing alongside her dad. She was raised on a ranch in North Dakota and learned the cowboy way of living – if you get bucked off of a horse, you get right back on. It’s helped carry Chloe through the more trying times in the ever-changing music business.

Almira ZakyVirginia: Almira Zaky

State: Virginia
Singer’s name: Almira Zaky
Hometown: Herndon, VA
Resident: Herndon, VA

Almira Zaky’s journey as a vocalist began at a young age when she would perform for thousands all around the Washington, D.C., area at several venues including World Bank, the Embassy of Indonesia, University of District of Columbia, University of Maryland, and events such as the annual Cherry Blossom Festival and the Baltimore Wooden Boat Festival. Almira is inspired by artists such as Kehlani, Jhene Aiko, Jojo and Ariana Grande and attributes her rhythmic R&B/pop influence to ’90s-’00s music. Her vibrant presence, outspoken lyrical skill, soulful tone and ability to relate to audiences all over the world has inspired others to become the boss of their own life. Almira, who is Muslim and proud of her Indonesian heritage, is very honored to represent her home state of Virginia, as it is the home to so many hip-hop/R&B musical legends, including Pharrell Williams, Timbaland, Chad Hugo and Missy Elliot.

Interview with last week’s contestants and with Kelly Clarkson

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson of "American Song Contest" on NBC

Interview with Michael Bolton

TV Interview!

Michael Bolton at "American Song Contest" on NBC

Interview with Michael Bolton at “American Song Contest” on NBC by Suzanne 3/28/22

It was great to speak with this legend a second time. Last week, Michael Bolton competed in the first episode of “American Song Contest” on NBC. This is a show similar to “Eurovision.”  NBC had this great after-show virtual red carpet for those of us in the press. Unfortunately, between technical problems, background noise, and Michael Bolton being a very quiet speaker, we weren’t able to hear or understand him, nor could we get a good video! Fortunately, it was announced during this week’s show that Michael had been voted to continue in the next round, so NBC was able to get us this short Zoom interview with him to make up for last week. I’m so grateful and happy!

Enjoy this nice CLEAR video! We’ll have the transcript up later.

MORE INFO:

Michael Bolton at "American Song Contest" on NBCConnecticut: Michael Bolton

State: Connecticut
Singer’s name: Michael Bolton
Hometown: New Haven, CT
Resident: Westport, CT

Michael Bolton is a multiple Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter who has sold more than 65 million records globally and continues to tour the world. Bolton is strongly committed to humanitarian causes, especially through the Michael Bolton Charities. In recognition of his artistic achievements, Michael won two Grammys for Best Pop Male Vocal Performance (nominated four times), six American Music Awards, three Emmy Award nominations and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. As a songwriter, he has earned more than 24 BMI & ASCAP Awards, including Songwriter of the Year and the Hitmakers Award from the Songwriters Hall of Fame. His coming-of-age story starts in Connecticut, where he was born and raised and most importantly where he discovered his love of singing and songwriting. He’s proud to represent the state as an artist and as someone who still loves going home to Connecticut.

About ‘American Song Contest’:

From the producers of “Eurovision Song Contest” and “The Voice,” the all-live music competition series, hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, premieres Monday, March 21 (8:00 – 10:00 pm ET/PT) and will run for eight weeks with the Grand Final on May 9.

“American Song Contest” will feature live new music performances – representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital – competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. An incredible solo artist, duo or a band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America. The live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Michael Bolton at "American Song Contest" on NBC

Interviews with “American Song Contest” contestants 3/21/22

TV Interview!

Interview with contestants the first qualifier round of “American Song Contest” on NBC by Suzanne 3/21/22

Michael Bolton on Zoom on the red carpet

Monday night was the premiere of “American Song Contest” on NBC. This is the new American version of Eurovision that we talked about last week.  A small group of us journalists watched the live show and then interviewed all 11 contestants for this first round of live qualifiers.  Honestly, I don’t watch most competition or music shows on TV. I just don’t have the time, and I’d rather watch scripted shows. I thought they did a pretty good job with it, though, and I enjoyed watching the contestants and learning about their backstories. I thought that the best song was “Loko” by Christian Pagán of Puerto Rico. The song was very catchy and his performance was great. Clearly, Heuston from Rhode Island also did very well. His song started out slowly and gravel-y-voiced… but got better, and he was aces at singing a ballad that melted everyone’s hearts. He was voted by the judges to go to the next round.

Although my main career is TV journalist and expert, I’m also a singer. I started singing in grade school and was taking voice lessons in high school and all through college.  I’ve still been singing and taking lessons for years, and I was in a band for awhile. So, I’m coming at this music contest from that perspective as well as from the TV show. I found it interesting as TV more than as music. This show is not “The Voice.” The singers here are being judged more for their songwriting and their performing than their singing…not that any of them are terrible singers. These are professional working musicians that do well in their local venues (and some nationally).

Michael Bolton singing in "American Song Contest" March 21, 2022

Mostly, I came here to see and talk to Michael Bolton. His song was not that great, to be honest. I did get to ask him a question, but unfortunately, the sound quality during that part of the interviews on the virtual red carpet was not good, and my recording below is almost unintelligible. I asked him if he wrote the song for this competition, what inspired it, and why he chose it.  He gave a nice, long answer, that I can’t make heads or tails of, which is a darn shame. I hope he makes it to the next round, and then I’ll be able to chat with him again.  His songs were big hits back in the 80’s when I was in college. I loved his biggest hit, “How Am I Supposed to Live Without You?,” which was also recorded by Laura Branigan. In fact, I have also sung that song many times in karaoke, and I always get a good reaction. His other huge hit was his version of “When a Man Loves a Woman.”

Most of the other recordings came out OK. I hope you enjoy them!

Kelly Clarkson and Snoop Dogg in "American Song Contest" 3/21/22

The show itself was fun. Snoop Dogg had a nice kind of laidback attitude to counter Kelly Clarkson’s infectious energy. Stay tuned for more contestants on the next show, Monday 3/28/22 on NBC! If you missed last week’s episode, find it on NBC.

Here are the videos, except for one that I’m missing from Christian Pagán and hope to have tomorrow.

Jake’O from Wisconsin was our first interviewee… I was having great difficulty hearing him… as you can tell by the faces I’m making. He sang a song called “Feel Your Love.” I took myself off video when I wasn’t asking a question because I didn’t want to have to worry about how I looked the whole time! This video clip is from Jamie of http://www.scifivision.com

Here’s Christian Pagán of Puerto Rico! He sang a really fun song, “Loko.” He would be my top pick. My recording didn’t come out, so this is from Jamie of http://www.scifivision.com

Here’s Michael Bolton!  He seemed pretty tired, and his speaking voice was not loud enough, on top of the other technical difficulties and background noise. He sang “Beautiful World.” My recording didn’t come out, so this is from Jamie of http://www.scifivision.com

Here’s the best transcription I could get for this, from TranscriptionPuppy.

Moderator: Hi, guys. We have Michael Bolton.

Michael: Hello.

Moderator: Chris, you’re up first; Beth, you’re on deck, and then Jamie.

Chris: Hi, Michael. How are you? Great performance tonight.

Michaeln: Thank you very much. For a timely song [inaudible] it’s getting harder. Things got harder in the real world.

Chris: It really is. I was just curious, what made you decide to be a part of this experience?

Michael: Oh. Well, songwriting is on the very top of my list of the things I love about music through the years and something that is enduring during [inaudible] function as an artist and a songwriter where I plan on continuing to be surrounded by people who love music and love to write. Things that are very wide, very [inaudible] so much really good, and then, of course, there’s Kelly, who’s spectacular, [inaudible] you got to talk to her on the line and it seems that [inaudible] so I ask my agent to find it well to physically [inaudible] whole made sense to happened then, I wrote [inaduble] of just [inaudible] someone who will work tied up [inaudible] and we wrote a song about knowing how intense [inaudible] great [inaudible] it means the world [inaudible] just make perfect sense to me, I love music [inaudible]

Chris: Thank you so much!

Jamie: Hi, Jamie Ruby here, from SciFiVision. Thank you so much for talking to us tonight. I really enjoyed your song So, obviously, you’ve been doing this for a really long time. Are there still new things to learn after doing something like this about yourself?

Michael: That kind of person who [inaudible] in every area of your life. [inaudible] like more [inaudible] for computers.

Jamie: Thank you.

Moderator: Beth, go ahead.

Beth: Thank you. It was so great seeing you, Michael. This is Beth with Hollywood Junket. I really enjoyed your performance tonight. I was wondering, are there any other contestants seeking your advice on their performances or rehearsals this week?

Michael: Everybody seems to be very [inaudible] and [inaudible] of their career. But I didn’t have [inaudible] always frequently, [inaudible] specifically when they’re inspiring [inaudible] somewhere where I can help them, kind of, avoid the dead ends and waste their time in [inaudible] themselves to [inaudible] something that [inaudible] look forward about this really great, really help [inaudible]

Beth: Thank you so much.

Moderator: Suzanne you’re up next, Justin you’re on deck.

Michael: Hi, Suzanne.

Suzanne: Hi Michael. What made you…what inspired you to write the song that you sang tonight, and what made you choose it for this contest?

Michael Bolton: Ironically, we are actually looking at completely different suggestions and this writing a song [inaudible] online [inaudible] start writing a song and [inaudible] create music [inaudible] I don’t think [inaudible] I don’t wanna [inaudible] imagine kind of threat [inaudible] somehow [inaudible] my mind [inaudible].

Suzanne: Alright, thank you.

Ryan Charles of Wyoming was next. He sang a really fun song, “”New Boot Goofin'” He was dressed like a cowboy, but he raps!

Kelsey Lamb of Arkansas was after him. I was pulling for her because I live in that state, but I don’t think her song, “Never Like This” was exciting enough to win the competition.

Next up was Keyone Starr of Mississippi, who sang “Fire.” Great song!

The next artists was UG Skywalkin of Indiana. His first name is pronounced like the letters U.G. (yoo jee) not like UGH!  He has an interesting backstory, which I asked him about.  His song was “Love in My City.”

AleXa of Oklahoma… she’s part Korean, so she does K-Pop. She put on quite a production, but her song, “Wonderland,” was not very notable.

This girl, Alisabeth Von Presley, of Iowa, sang really well, but I don’t think the song, “Wonder” was very catchy.

Heuston of Rhode Island really wowed everyone with his song, “Held on Too Long.” It was great to chat with him. My husband’s family is from Rhode Island!

Yam Haus is a really enthusiastic group of friends from Minnesota who sang “Ready to Go.” They had a lot of energy. This was our last group to interview.

I hope you enjoyed these interviews!

MORE INFO:

**MEDIA ALERT** ‘American Song Contest’ Series Premiere Virtual Zoom Room Monday, March 21, 2022

What:                  American Song Contest’ Live Series Premiere and Virtual Zoom Room

Watch the live show and have the opportunity to speak with the first 11 artists to perform.  Virtual Zoom Room to follow directly after the premiere.

NBC’s upcoming music competition series “American Song Contest” features live new music performances representing the 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital, who will compete to win the country’s vote for the best hit song.  The artists span a wide range of performers, from undiscovered talent, up-and-coming new artists, and rising stars to established and legendary icons.

Who:                   The initial 11 artists performing on the premiere.

To learn more about these artists, visit here.

  • Kelsey Lamb (Arkansas)
  • Michael Bolton (Connecticut)
  • Alisabeth Von Presley (Iowa)
  • UG skywalkin (Indiana)
  • Yam Haus (Minneota)
  • Keyone Starr (Mississippi)
  • AleXa (Oklahoma)
  • Christian Pagán (Puerto Rico)
  • Hueston (Rhode Island)
  • Jake’O (Wisconsin)
  • Ryan Charles (Wyoming)

*All talent subject to availability*

When:                 Monday, March 21, 2022

5:00pm PT           Live Show Taping Begins

7:00pm PT           Live Show Ends/Virtual Zoom Room begins

9:00pm PT           Virtual Zoom Room Closes

About ‘American Song Contest’:

From the producers of “Eurovision Song Contest” and “The Voice,” the all-live music competition series, hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, premieres Monday, March 21 (8:00 – 10:00 pm ET/PT) and will run for eight weeks with the Grand Final on May 9.

“American Song Contest” will feature live new music performances – representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital – competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. An incredible solo artist, duo or a band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America. The live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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Michael Bolton of Connecticut

Interview with Kelly Clarkson

TV Interview!

Kelly Clarkson of "American Song Contest" on NBC. Photo from video on etonline.com

Interview with EP and host Kelly Clarkson, EP/showrunner Audrey Morrissey, EP Ben Silverman, EP Anders Lenhoff and EP Christer Björkman of “American Song Contest” on NBC by Suzanne 3/14/22

This was a press conference for the upcoming show, “American Song Contest”. I was just one of many journalists in attendance This sounds like a fun show. It begins Monday, 3/21 on NBC! There are 54 contestants total – one from each state or territory. They compete each week until they narrow it down. You can vote online between the airing of the episode on Monday, and Wednesday. Each of the contestants are professional working musicians, not newbies or amateurs. Based on “Eurovision,” each group performs their original song. So, unlike, say, “The Voice,” they’re being judged more for their performing and songwriting talent than they are for their singing and playing.

Kelly Clarkson was very enthusiastic on Zoom. I’m told that she’s often this way. I don’t watch her show, and I haven’t seen her on anything else, so I’ll have to take their word for it. She certainly loves to talk! I can see why she has a talk show.

Along with Kelly, who’s both co-host and executive producer, were the executive producers and showrunner Audrey Morrissey.  Two of the EPs, Lenhoff and Björkman, were involved with Eurovision, the European music contest that “American Song Contest” is based on.

It was very interesting to learn about this new show, which is different from all of the other singing contests on TV, such as “American Idol,” “The Voice,” “America’s Got Talent,” etc.

The show is the brainchild of EP Ben Silverman, who’s been working for “over 25 years” to try to get the Eurovision rights to make an American version. Eurovision was “not only the first, it’s the most ambitious and unique.” He’s understandably “thrilled” to be finally putting it all together for NBC. He hopes the audience will tune it because it’s live, they have great hosts in Snoop and Kelly and “It’s filled with regional passion and state by state brilliance. And I think you are going to be amazed to see some professionals, some amateurs, all different kinds of genres of music.”

Kelly is looking forward to the world seeing the diversity they have on the show because she knows there are different types of music all over the U.S., including in her home state of Texas. She really hopes that the show helps heal the country because it’s so “divided” right now “because people have their preconceived notions of who is from where. And that’s just not true anymore, especially in such a digital age and the Internet age. We are all very similar more than not. But, also, we do represent different cultures, which is going to be cool.”

You may wonder if larger states like Texas will get more votes than the smaller ones, but Silverman explained that, just like in Eurovision, every state has equal voting power. Kelly believes that people will vote for the artists that like the best – not just the ones in their home state. Kelly had worked with Snoop Dog before on “The Voice” and proclaimed that they worked really well together. “the thing I loved most about him is that he really took his time listening and kind of taking it in, like, each performance.” So she’s very excited to be hosting with him. She pointed out that they both represent vastly different types of music as well as areas of the country.

Producer Morrissey explained that they put out the word to all of professional people they knew, in “a really vast network of A&R scouts, managers, booking agents” from other music shows like “The Voice” and “Songland.” She had to make it show that this show is not like “American Idol” or the other shows. It’s for professional musicians. “This is for the artists, the person who is committed to ‘This is what I’m doing in my life, and I’ve been grinding it and working it on the road for years. I’m kind of a known entity. A&R scouts know about me. Maybe I am about to be signed, or I already have been signed, or I’ve turned down deals because I want to go it alone.'” In the future, they hope to have a mechanism similar to Eurovision, where each state has its own contest and the winner of each contest goes to their show.

Kelly and the other producers are really excited to show us that their show will have the “really over the top costumes and production stage values that” Eurovision has. Silverman noted, “It’s unbelievable, our sets, the spectacle, the costume design, the lighting design, all of the production value.” He cited the finale as being very similar to the type they do on the original Eurovision.

They don’t think that the more famous artists like Jewel will necessarily have an edge over the lesser-known artists in the competition. Each one has to prove themselves in the competition, famous or not. It’s also a great venue for any of the artists to showcase a new song.

Monday, 3/20 I’ll be watching the show and interviewing some of the contestants afterwards, live, so stay tuned!

MORE INFO:

American Song Contest

Mondays on NBC (8-10 p.m. ET); Series Premiere: March 21

America’s biggest live entertainment event has arrived! Based on the worldwide phenomenon “Eurovision Song Contest,” organized for 65 years by the European Broadcasting Union and watched by 200 million viewers annually, this amazing musical spectacular combines the competitive spirit of rooting for your favorite sports team with the joy of watching a beloved singing performance.

In the U.S. version of the international megahit, “American Song Contest” will feature live original musical performances, representing all 50 states, five U.S. territories and our nation’s capital, competing to win the country’s vote for the best hit song. The 56 artists span a wide range of performers – from undiscovered talent, up-and-coming new artists, and rising stars to established and legendary icons. An incredible solo artist, duo, group or band will represent each location and perform a new original song, celebrating the depth and variety of different styles and genres across America.

Hosted by Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson, the eight-week live competition consists of three rounds as the artists compete in a series of Qualifying Rounds, followed by the Semi-Finals and the ultimate Grand Final where one state or territory will emerge victorious.

“American Song Contest” is executive produced by Propagate’s Ben Silverman and Howard T. Owens, alongside Audrey Morrissey, Amanda Zucker, Kyra Thompson and Gregory Lipstone as well as American Song Contest, Inc.’s Anders Lenhoff, Christer Björkman, Peter Settman and Ola Melzig. Snoop Dogg and Kelly Clarkson also serve as executive producers.

The series is produced by Propagate in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio, a division of Universal Studio Group, and American Song Contest, Inc.

Hashtag: #AmericanSongContest

AMERICAN SONG CONTEST— Season: 1 -- Pictured: Kelly Clarkson, Snoop Dogg -- (Photo by: Chris Haston/Dave Bjerke/NBC)Kelly Clarkson

Coach, “The Voice”; Executive Producer/Host, “American Song Contest”; Executive Producer/Host, “The Kelly Clarkson Show”

Kelly Clarkson serves as a coach on NBC’s four-time Emmy Award-winning musical competition series “The Voice.” She won the competition in seasons 14, 15 and 17.

Clarkson will serve as host (with Snoop Dogg) on the new NBC musical competition series “American Song Contest” and she’s currently filming season three of “The Kelly Clarkson Show,” which has already been picked up for a fourth season.

An Emmy-winning talk show host, Grammy Award-winning artist and America’s original idol, Clarkson is one of the most popular artists of this era with total worldwide sales of more than 25 million albums and 40 million singles.

Clarkson recently released her critically acclaimed Grammy-nominated eighth studio album, “Meaning of Life,” and in 2020 released her powerful single “I Dare You,” which she recorded with five other artists in six languages

The Texas-born singer-songwriter first came to fame in 2002 as the winner of the inaugural season of “American Idol.” Clarkson’s debut single, “A Moment Like This,” followed and quickly went to #1 on Billboard’s Hot 100, ultimately ranking as the year’s best-selling single in the U.S. Further, Clarkson is one of pop’s top singles artists, with 17 singles boasting multi-platinum, platinum and gold certifications around the world, including such global favorites as “Miss Independent” and “Because of You.”

Clarkson has released eight studio albums (“Thankful,” “Breakaway,” “My December,” “All I Ever Wanted,” “Stronger,” “Wrapped in Red,” “Piece By Piece,” “Meaning of Life”), one greatest hits album and two children’s books (New York Times Top 10 bestseller “River Rose and the Magical Lullaby” and the follow-up, “River Rose and the Magical Christmas”).

She is the recipient of an array of awards, including two Daytime Emmy Award in 2020 and 2021 for Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Host, three Grammys, four American Music Awards, three MTV Video Music Awards, two Academy of Country Music Awards, two American Country Awards and one Country Music Assn. Award. She is also the first artist to top each of Billboard’s pop, adult contemporary, country and dance charts.

Additionally, Clarkson has hosted the “Billboard Music Awards” for the past three years and she also voices the character of Moxy in “Ugly Dolls” and the character of Delta Dawn in “Trolls World Tour.”

Snoop Dogg

Executive Producer/Host, “American Song Contest”

A multi-platinum artist, actor, philanthropist and entertainment icon, Snoop Dogg has reigned for nearly three decades as an unparalleled force, raising the bar as an award-winning entertainer and globally recognized entrepreneur. Snoop defines entertainment history. He has released 21 studio albums, sold over 40 million albums worldwide, reached No. 1 countless times on Billboard charts internationally and received 20 Grammy nominations.

A California native, Snoop has also appeared in numerous films, such as “Dolemite Is My Name,” “The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run,” “The Addams Family,” “Beach Bum,” “Starsky & Hutch,” “Soul Plane” and the Oscar-winning drama “Training Day,” among others. He has also produced several TV shows and films, including Vice’s “Reincarnated,” “Mac & Dean Go to High School” and “Hood of Horror” through his production company, Snoopadelic Films. He made his mark in television when he garnered an Emmy Award nomination as executive producer for the hit VH1 show “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner.” Snoop was also the executive producer of the Netflix show “Coach Snoop,” “GGN: Double G News,” MTV’s “Mary + Jane” and the TNT game show “Joker’s Wild,” which he also hosted.

Most recently, Snoop has hosted and produced several projects through his Snoopadelic films, including two Peacock originals – “2021 and Done” alongside Kevin Hart, a hilarious retrospective on the year that began with so much promise; and “Olympic Highlights with Kevin Hart and Snoop Dogg,” recapping the Olympics’ most impressive delays of athleticism and the moments that didn’t go as planned.

Audrey Morissey, Executive Producer and Showrunner of "American Song Contest" on NBCAudrey Morrissey

Executive Producer, “The Voice”; Executive Producer, “American Song Contest”

Audrey Morrissey is an executive producer and the creative force behind NBC’s all-live music competition series “American Song Contest” as well as four-time Emmy Award-winning music competition series “The Voice.”

A veteran of MTV, she spent nine years at the network in their music and specials division working on high-profile music series and annual event specials, such as “Unplugged,” VMAs and MTV Movie Awards.

After several years in New York, she was sent to Los Angeles to build the West Coast production department for both MTV and VH1.

Morrissey then joined Jimmy Iovine and Doug Morris as the Head of Television for their online music venture, Farmclub.com, and met her future partner, Ivan Dudynsky, with whom she started Live Animals Productions.

Since the formation of Live Animals, Morrissey has executive produced award shows, music specials, reality series, music videos and promos. She has executive produced the Emmy Awards, People’s Choice Awards, MTV Movie Awards, CMT Music Awards and, most recently, Teen Choice Awards. She also created and executive produced the NBC series “Songland.”

In addition to her four Emmy wins as executive producer of “The Voice,” Morrissey has five PGA Awards for Outstanding Producer of Competition Television for her work on the show.

Ben Silverman, Executive Producer of "American Song Contest" on NBCBen Silverman

Executive Producer, “American Song Contest”

Ben Silverman, the Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning media entrepreneur, visionary producer and New York Times best-selling author behind “The Office,” is the Chairman and Co-CEO of Propagate Content, creating and producing all forms of content for distribution across a variety of platforms around the world.

Silverman founded two of the media industry’s most renowned super indies, Electus and Reveille. Silverman founded Reveille in 2002 to exploit international formats by selling them in the United States. Prior to launching Electus, Silverman served as Co-Chairman of NBC Entertainment and Universal Media Studios from 2007-09 where he transformed the business model by connecting advertisers and consumers through content in a more profound way. Through his Electus banner, Silverman took a leadership role in digital content, building the #1 comedy site on the Internet, CollegeHumor.com, and extending projects to multiple platforms, including numerous digital projects and partnerships with Yahoo!, Facebook and YouTube.

Pioneering content at the forefront of the entertainment industry, Silverman has created and executive produced major network, cable and digital platform hits, including Golden Globe and Peabody award-winning shows “The Office,” “Ugly Betty,” “The Biggest Loser” and “The Tudors,” as well as hits such as “Jane the Virgin,” “Marco Polo” and “Flaked” with Will Arnett and Mitch Hurwitz for Netflix, NBC’s transformative TV commerce show “Fashion Star” and “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” on Nat Geo. Silverman has also produced feature films, including “My Boyfriend’s Meds,” “Mansome” and “Hands of Stone,” the biopic of Roberto Duran starring Robert De Niro, Usher and Edgar Ramirez that premiered at Cannes Film Festival.

Silverman’s Propagate has offices in Los Angeles, New York, and Paris. Its recent credits include the critically acclaimed sports doc series “Untold” on Netflix, the US Women’s soccer doc “LFG” that premiered at Tribeca and now streams on HBO Max, the Emmy-nominated “Hillary” that premiered at Sundance and now streams on Hulu, “Notre Dame: Our Lady of Paris” on ABC, the “Go-Big Show” on TBS and the upcoming “American Song Contest” for NBC, as well as the unscripted “Nov. 13: Attack on Paris,” “Haunted” and “Prank Encounters” for Netflix, and “In Search Of” and “Kings of Pain” for History.

On the scripted side, Propagate’s scripted credits include “Shaka Zulu” for Showtime, “Remote” for Comedy Central and “Pinches Momias” for Univision, as well as “Rebelde” streaming on Netflix, “Let’s Be Real” on Fox, “Blood and Treasure” and “Broke” for CBS, and “Charmed” for the CW. Propagate also created and produced the podcast “An Oral History of the Office” for Spotify and the New York Times bestselling book “Welcome to Dunder Mifflin,” based on the podcast. Propagate’s expanding portfolio of companies includes Electus (“You vs. Wild,” “Running Wild With Bear Grylls,” “Jane the Virgin,” “Fashion Star”), Big Breakfast (“Adam Ruins Everything”, “Hot Date”), Notional (“Chopped” franchise), and talent management firms Artists First, Authentic Talent & Literary Management and Select Management.

Anders Lenhoff

Executive Producer, “American Song Contest”

Anders Lenhoff is one of the elite TV creatives in Europe with a career-spanning almost three decades having created, produced and/or directed 15 different TV shows that rated above 10% of the population.

In addition to serving as show producer for the Eurovision Song Contest, as well as Melodifestivalen, his other credits include the first ever season of “Expedition: Robinson, Survivor” and international versions of the hit UK panel comedies “QI” and “Have I Got News for You.”

Lenhoff also created and ran “The Commission,” a 12-episode political drama that was nominated for Prix d’Europe. In addition, he produced a highly comedy talk show in Sweden, three annual award shows, directed a long-running Swedish drama series and sketch-comedy series “Reuter & Skoog” and “Hipp Hipp,” the latter of which won a Silver Rose as the best light entertainment in Europe.

Christer Björkman

Anders Lenhoff and Christer BjörkmanExecutive Producer, “American Song Contest”

Christer Björkman is a living legend among Eurovision fans.

An avid fan of the competition since early childhood, he dreamed of competing as an artist in the Swedish selection show. In 1992, his dream came through. He entered and won and got to represent Sweden in the Eurovision Song Contest.

However, his true legacy began in 2002 when he was appointed Contest Producer and Creative Director for “Melodifestivalen,” the Swedish selection show for the ESC. At the time, “Melodifestivalen” was a crumbling format in steep decline, but with Björkman at the helm, it quickly turned into one of the biggest TV success stories in the world of television. “Melodifestivalen” has been the biggest entertainment show in Scandinavia for almost two decades.

During Björkman’s reign, Sweden has won the ESC twice, making it the second most successful competing country in history. Björkman is also the most experienced ESC producer ever and consults for broadcasters all over Europe.

Björkman was awarded a Rose d’Or for the Eurovision Song Contest in 2016.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

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AMERICAN SONG CONTEST— Season: 1 -- Pictured: Kelly Clarkson -- (Photo by: Chris Haston/NBC)