Despite the hype which NBC helped out with, along with having Kelly Clarkson and Snoop Dogg host the competition, on February 6, Christer Bjorkman announced the American Song Contest would not continue for 2023. The contest only lasted for only one season, at which it frequently placed behind American Idol in the ratings.
The United States had been on the eye of the EBU for several years now. From attempts to get a channel to broadcast the contest from 2016 onwards to Eurovision: The Legend of Fire Saga and having the 2019 contest on Netflix, the American media market could provide for more viewers of the contest.
The American Song Contest was meant to capitalize on that, along with Eurovision’s popularity. And so in 2022, for several weeks between March and May, artists from all fifty states, along with six national territories, faced off in multiple heats to get the best new song from the United States.
You would’ve thought that would resulted in not only similar songs from their charts, but also big names. However, most of the artists are relatively new, playing in genres which are not expected based on the state’s culture. Most notably, AleXa, representing Oklahoma, won the contest with “Wonderland”, a K-Pop song.
Even if big names got involved in the contest, they were eliminated early. One exception was Michael Bolton, who represented Connecticut with the song “Beautiful World”. With its vibrant spirit and modern production, it contrasts with his most famous songs like “When a Man Loves a Woman“, which have a sullen flair.
Of course, as with any debut, flaws sprouted up from the outset. From scheduling to not remembering which contestant was which depending on the state, the American Song Contest had some gaping holes. However, it allowed Americans to engage in a contest of their own, without having to join the original.
In lieu of flowers, please check out the songs which had represented the contest, and watch the flagship contest in May.