Who’s ready for Week 2 of American Song Contest?!
On last week’s premiere, hosts Kelly Clarkson and Snoop Dogg introduced us to 11 contestants, from 11 different states/territories, who each performed an original song. The show ended with “Held On Too Long” by Hueston from Rhode Island being crowned the winner of the night.
Tonight’s show will begin with three more songs from last week’s premiere moving on to the next round. Then we’ll see 11 new contestants from 11 new states/territories and get to hear 11 brand-spankin-new songs!
Voting is conducted by a jury representing all 56 states, territories and Washington D.C., but fans have the opportunity to vote as well! Fan-voting takes place online, on TikTok, and on the NBC app. Full voting details can be found HERE.
The jury ranked last week’s songs from 1st to 11th place, with Hueston scoring in 1st place.
The three performers from last week going through are… AleXa, Michael Bolton, and… Christian Pagan!
Courtship – Oregon – “Million Dollar Smoothies”
Micah and Eli make up the duo Courtship, a name they got from watching nature documentaries together. The two started making music in Micah’s bedroom and now have over a million streams. The duo show us around Oregon, their pastel-colored houses and reasonably priced smoothies.
This song and performance have a very AJR-esque vibe, with the unique background vocals and trick set. The background dancers dressed as green smoothies was a little much, but overall it was a very catchy, 2022-sounding song. Something you would definitely hear on the ALT station.
Jonah Prill – Montana – “Fire It Up”
Jonah is seen in his home state of Montana riding a horse on a ranch and taking photos of the gorgeous sunset. Jonah started out with a big following online for his photography, and later integrated music, and calls “Fire It Up” the “song of the summer.”
My immediate thought was “Luke Bryan.” The song itself has a lot of Luke Bryan vibes, and is your typical, pretty country song. The background pyrotechnics was a fun addition, because, you know, “fire it up.” And Jonah received roaring applause once the song ended!
Enisa – New York – “Green Light”
Enisa welcomes us to New York with pizza and Times Square. Enisa’s song “Green Light” is about wherever in the world you come from, in New York, you have the green light to make your dreams come true.
“Green Light” is very techno and dancey, with hints of Latin vibes as Enisa sings and dances in front of literal green strobe lights. Definitely a Hot 100 sound, and ending with the neon green Statue of Liberty was a surefire way to get all the NYC votes!
Jocelyn – Nebraska – “Never Alone”
Jocelyn says in Ohama, there’s an excitement when people do well. Jocelyn has worked with the Boys Town National Hotline, and tells the story of the time an onlooker posted a video of them busking in Omaha, and the video unexpectedly got 6 million views.
Jocelyn’s white acoustic guitar matches their suit. “Never Alone” encompasses a positive message wrapped up in some early-Taylor Swift vibes; that perfect combination of country and soft pop.
Cruz Rock – Virgin Islands – Celebrando
Cruz introduces us to the DJ’s who were the first to place his music, saying three of his latest music videos have garnered millions of views. Cruz says he wants to bring a high energy performance after the break…
“Celebrando” has a fun and funky Latin vibe, Cruz and the dancers are dressed in vibrant colors and the dancing just makes you want to get up and join them!
Kelly and Snoop’s Halftime Report wraps up the first half of the show, with a replay of Courtship’s dancing green smoothies and viral dog TikToks featuring last week’s song “New Book Goofin.”
Jordan Smith – Kentucky – “Sparrow”
Jordan teaches us the four B’s of Kentucky: Burbon, basketball, baseball bats, and… bluegrass, he remembers. Jordan won The Voice in 2016, and even wrote a song for Celine Dion. The singer says when they win ASC and bring the trophy home, they’re going to have KFC for everybody!
I see why Jordan won The Voice! Beautiful voice and a beautiful message in this powerful ballad. Jordan is joined by a choir for the final chorus, but Jordan certainly overtakes this song with that incredible voice. Snoop said it best when he said he wanted to wave his light during the inspirational song.
Chloe Fredericks – North Dakota – “Can’t Make You Love Me”
Chloe sits in a barn and shows us her snowy cattle ranch, her family a being four generations of cattle ranchers. The singer is Native American, and got her tribe naming last fall: Aabaci Cagic, meaning “they hear her voice.”
“Can’t Make You Love Me” does, as Chloe said, blend the cultures, with a pow-wow beat and her country tone representing both her Native American heritage and North Dakota home. the audience claps along as Chloe sings her heart out, though the final note was underwhelming.
Broderick Jones – Kansas – “Tell Me”
Broderick says while a lot of people have barbecue, they don’t have Kansas barbecue, then shows us around the skate park where he grew up. He calls “Tell Me” diverse, and that he’ll be bringing hype to the stage.
From the first note and visual, I’m already loving Broderick’s vibe! The crescent mood backdrop is gorgeous, and the backup dancers are honestly unnecessary for such a great performance. Broderick owns the stage all on his own! I would have enjoyed simply Broderick, the song and the crescent moon; the theatrics weren’t needed for this one, in my opinion.
Almira Zaky – Virginia – “Over You”
Almira’s name means “princess” in Arabic, and she’s a first generation American of Indonesian and Muslim parents. Almira credits Virginia for its diversity, and teaches us a tourist slogan: “Virginia is for lovers.”
This R&B song, its simple but powerful lyrics, and Almira’s smooth voice are all very 90’s sounding. Again, I can’t decide whether this one really needed the backup dancers or not, but it was an enjoyable performance.
King Kyote – Maine – “Get Out Alive”
King Kyote’s “postcard” package starts out with lighthouses and “lobstah.” He says the heart of Maine is its people, but surfing in Maine is not for the faint of heart.
This is what I’m talking about! A singer and their guitar! With some songs, that’s all you need. “Get Out Alive” has a country-rock sound, like a song you would hear on several different radio stations of different genres. King Kyote receives the loudest and longest applause of the night so far!
Macy Gray – Ohio – “Every Night”
Macy says a fun fact about Ohio is that Macy Gray is from Ohio! The “I Try” singer says her first job was at the Football Hall of Fame, and she wants to put a smile on people’s faces with her song after the break…
Macy’s performance also features The California Jet Club, as well as Snoop Dogg’s nephew Maino. “Every Night” has a really fun gospel vibe that makes you want to just sing and clap along as Macy and Maino perform! The performance ends with the two joining hands in front of the choir.
The jury casts their vote and tonight’s winner is… “Sparrow” by Jordan Smith from Kentucky!
Join me next Monday night when three more songs from tonight’s show will move onto the semi-finals, then 11 more songs and states will perform!