After much anticipation, Monday night was finally the night for the American Song Contest to debut, with the acts from heat one taking the stage.
The 11 competitors each brought something different to try and get viewers’ attention and votes. As with Eurovision, voting for your own state/territory is not allowed.
The singers were all hoping to do their states/territories proud and book a spot in the semi-finals.
The shows are being broadcast on NBC at 20:00 EDT (01:00 CET) on Monday nights (Tuesday morning in Europe).
Kelly Clarkson and Snoop Dog are on hosting duty.
American Song Contest Heat One
- Arkansas: Kelsey Lamb – “Never Like This”
- Connecticut: Michael Bolton – “Beautiful World”
- Indiana: UG skywalkin ft. Maxie – “Love in My City”
- Iowa: Alisabeth Von Presley – “Wonder”
- Minnesota: Yam Haus – “Ready to Go”
- Mississippi: Keyone Starr – “Fire”
- Oklahoma: AleXa – “Wonderland”
- Puerto Rico: Christian Pagán – “Loko”
- Rhode Island: Hueston – “Held On Too Long”
- Wisconsin: Jake’O – “Feel Your Love”
- Wyoming: Ryan Charles – “New Boot Goofin'”
"We're obsessed with "Held On Too Long" by Rhode Island's @iamhueston!— NBC Entertainment (@nbc) March 22, 2022
NBC’s #AmericanSongContest is LIVE Mondays 8/7c." pic.twitter.com/C7RMeIpTsk
Four acts will ultimately qualify from heat one.
The professional jury selected one qualifier during the live programme. This was Hueston from Rhode Island.
The public now have three days to vote for their favourites and select three other acts to advance.
Are you happy to see Hueston qualify from heat one of the American Song Contest? Who do you think the public should throw their support behind? Let us know in the comments below!
Does anyone know how the voting will work in their grand final???
I mean 56 states and territories isnt going to be translate to to the eurovision final format tbh
The show will air live across all timezones for the final, with everyone being able to vote live. There’s no word yet on how the results will be announced by producers confirmed that they’ll things differently with how they will announce the points to accommodate all 56 states/territories without going overtime.
Okay, this will most likely offend many, but let’s be honest: It’s easier to impress a 60 year old Montenegrinian house wife than to impress a 60 year old American house wife who has watched 40+ years of Super Bowl half time shows. And in general, the US audience is used to much higher production standards than Europeans are used to from their respective broadcasters. Yet, NBC is wrong if they think it would be sufficient to just imitate the principles of a super large pan-continental (or in this case just nation-wide) music contest. It naturally lacks the background of… Read more »
I really should have written ‘therefore’ instead of ‘yet’.
This show will have little interest unless the winner gets to compete in Eurovision.
Were you able to see contest?
I’m not surprised by the viewing figures, since we’re in the age of streaming, and the show was heavily promoted for Peacock as well. I really wanted the show to be more like Melodifest, but it felt bloated and long. There’s a lack of glitz and glamor that you expect to see in Melodifestivalen. That’s why I was excited to see Kelly Clarkson host, he’s already a talk show host that sings everyday. Snoop is still a mystery to me.
The viewing figures will probably pick up when one or more of the Big 5 (California, Texas, Florida, New York, Illinois) competes.
No big 5 in the USA. None of that corruption. California needs to compete fairly with the smallest states.
that idea of ASC having a big five is hilarious to me. Yeah…no. That would immediately be declared unfair and they wouldn’t get away with that.
As expected, an Americanized ESC would be bad. I knew they’d fill it with “meet the artist” crap and their hard luck sympathy stories and it’d be less about the songs. Add in boring hosts and a 1000 commercials and you’ve got 33 minutes of music spread over 2 hours.
We couldn’t expect anything else when Christer Björkmann is envolved. I am still waiting for this thing turn political the only way America does best … red vs blue … white vs every other color … Christian vs Any other religion, liberal vs conservative etc.
Ranked last among the big 4 networks in the time period…got slightly more than half of the viewers American Idol got in the time period…lost nearly a third of its adult audience from the first quarter to the last…it did trend in the US on Twitter, but that’s going to solve its audience issues…not sure why they aired this opposite American Idol and not try it out in the summer…it didn’t feel nowhere the level of Eurovision except for the Swedish-penned song LOL
They only count cable views; not streaming, views on peacock, or international views. As in it’s a lot higher. 2.90 million is really not bad though seeing as most people don’t watch cable anymore
this was not on cable…this was on free television in the US…NBC is like BBC1 or RTVE or ZDF
still TV broski. it’s basic cable or whatever idk. but yes it’s a channel everyone has for ‘free’. my point was most watched it on their TV and they don’t track viewship via streams or from Non NBC sources like NRK
It still requires that you have some type of cable package, which still costs money. I don’t have any cable (I purely stream) and there was no way to legally watch this live. My only choice was waiting until the next day when it was available free on their streaming platform.
It’s fine if you look at it through the lens of a national final….certainly not the Eurovision Grand Final despite the name….. the ratings were meh…. we will see if it gets viral
good show and good songs, but the juries predictably chose a dud haha
I know lol, they emulated the lunacy of the jury voting perfectly. That bit they got spot on
Arkansaawwwwww was great. My favourite and Wyoming “nuew boot geeoofin “
How are people in the UK watching?
I’m not in the UK, but NBC have put all of last night’s songs up on YouTube.
Not sure if you are wanting to watch live (it is quite late your time, around 1 to 3 am). If so, it is streamed live on a small local Canadian station (CHCH), though not sure if it is blocked in Europe: https://www.chch.com/live/
do you think minnesota or wisconsin will qualify?
Wisconsin, maybe. Minnesota, definitely not.
Minnesota stands a good chance, I think — it was a strong opener. Wisconsin did well but I think the genre of music is just a little too left of center – but we’ll see! With the ratings sadly what they were, I’m not sure we can count out anyone.
Seems like 2.9 million people watched the ASC premiere live in the US. Does anyone famous with television in the US know if this is a good number or not? Does it show a upcoming success or a flop?
The numbers weren’t great, but not completely hopeless for a new program directly competing against American Idol. We’ll see how future episodes fare.
Views in the millions strikes me as a good start, but I don’t know ratings that well. We ARE a big country.
It’s the demo that counts the most. Both hours of ASC registered a 0.5 in Adults 18-49, which is okay at best considering ratings in American broadcast has long been fractional. It has to settle more or less within that range to have a shot at renewal by May.
American Idol, in its 20th season is still doing impressive, I gotta admit. It’s far from the 20 million it used to command at its peak but it’s still doing decently for a show that’s been around for as long as it has.
ouch, not asc competing directly against katy perry’s american idol… could’ve picked another day smh
NBC’s schedule for its other nights are too apcked to move it elsewhere. Saturday is a possibility but it is considered a death night in American TV, usually filled with encores, crime documentaries and episodes of canceled shows being burned off.
So the BIG monday night shows that are considered successful usually rake somewhere between 5 or 6 million views I think? At least, when comparing it to other shows that night. Keep in mind these shows are like, the dramas that have been going on multiple seasons and a lot of them aren’t live or reality TV.
American TV in general though is dying. People these days favor streaming services over cable and live TV.
Maybe the audience will pick up once of the big states started competing.
As an American fan of Eurovision, I had high hopes when I heard that the Eurovision format was coming to America… then low hopes when I heard that NBC got it. I’ve always disliked the production that NBC has given to The Voice, America’s Got Talent, and especially The Olympics, among their other shows. No matter the show, there is always too much emphasis on pointless human interest sob stories, wonky editing, and needless over-production. After watching the first episode, my fears were somewhat realized. I will say that the songs and singers themselves were pretty decent overall, certainly not… Read more »
as a fellow american….how do you expect that to work? States can’t have their own selections since stare broadcasting channels do not really exist.
True, but there are individual NBC affiliates, many of which have their own programming already. It may be possible to have statewide selection shows across affiliates of each state when NBC programming is basically junk or repeats anyway (Friday/Saturday nights or even weekend afternoons). It’ll be tricky, though, with a lot of affiliates crossing state lines (especially in the cases of Delaware and New Jersey which don’t have their own affiliates but share with New York, Philadelphia, and Salisbury, MD). My own fantasy American Song Contest forgets the states entirely and competes across the American television market areas. This would… Read more »
One state have more than one network affiliate. The logistics would be a lot more messier especially if you’re only launching a new show.
Is there any chance of a Conchita or Tone Sekelius next year?
Is there anything close this year?
An Achille Lauro or Big Daddy Karsten would also be nice.
I honestly thought Iowa was great.
really hoping wyoming makes it through, such a fun eurovisiony performance and song. i really loved it
and honestly though i think every single act is deserving of a spot in the final. curious to see what happens with michael bolton, would be kind of ironic if he doesnt qualify
How do they stop people voting for their own song?
You can only vote with a NBC profile. There they ask for your zipcode. I’ll see if I can vote for the Texan song when that comes up.
You can give every song that has performed up to 10 points through a slider, perhaps they won’t let you do that when the zipcode connected to your profile is in that certain state.
Is it the honour system?
when you create an account to vote, you have to enter your ZIP code.
I don’t think viewers are actually prohibited from voting for their own state in this show. The jurors are prohibited, though.
The televote works different from Eurovision. Instead of having a pool of 20 votes to split between your favorite artists, you rate each artist 0 to 10. So you are kind of encouraged to give some points to every song you enjoyed. There’s nothing stopping you from giving 10 points to every artist.
“State pride” really isn’t a big thing here, outside of a few southern states.
Thank you. Voting is also free, so that probably makes a difference too.
Why the heck was Alexa performing second
That old running order thing doesn’t mean anything, especially when it’s a new competition.
The best part was the contestants talking about their state and themselves which was fun and interesting. Unfortunately the performances were marred by epileptic fit-inducing flashy visuals and half-naked women shaking their butts in your face. Glad the winner was a simple working class dude sitting on a stool singing without the bells and whistles. Terrible, boring, chemistry-less hosting by Snoop and Kelly.
I think this is a promising start! My three favorites were Puerto Rico, Indiana, and Oklahoma, but Rhode Island more than deserved the jury pass.
Of course, hard-in-the-paint Eurovision fans were teeing themselves up to hate this anyway and American newspapers don’t seem to understand that Eurovision is more than just goofy novelty acts so they’re saying it’s boring. Sigh. You can’t win.
Americans are often exposed to Eurovision via British sources for obvious reasons. Most people I’ve seen who know of it but don’t really follow it parrot the tired tropes: wacky, not real music, it’s all political and so on. The good news is that’s still an extremely small number of people overall, so there’s a lot of room to reach those who have no preconceived notions of what ESC or ASC should be. But much of the American music press has a very narrow view of what is quality music and would rather come up with dismissive insults than admit… Read more »
i am exhausted of the brits and thier “we’re used to getting zero points cuz nobody likes us”, while they’re the ones sending crap songs 9/10 times. when i sit americans down to watch eurovision, they’re all like “oh, can’t wait for next year” because they didn’t realize how serious the whole thing is…
my fave was by farrr AleXa, but why was she not singing live at all? i don’t get it
So from what I’m seeing online in social media, I think it’s safe to assume that Oklahoma and Connecticut are qualifying.
Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Wyoming are pretty much battling for that final spot.
…As fun as new boot goofin’ is, I hope one of the other two gets it because it’d be kind of sad if after such a midwest-heavy heat, if not even ONE midwest state made it through. But then again…overlooking the midwest would be very on-brand for america lol
Minnesota? Were we watching the same show?
except that social media may not mean much since there’s juries involved.
i see OK, WY and MS qualifying… PR close next.
Since three entries from each round are picked entirely by televoting, I think social media might be more useful for figuring out who will be qualifying.
Aside from that, you make good points!
another reason I say connecticut is because when I last checked, his song was the highest ASC song on our itunes chart
Good to see that quality prevailed. A jury with taste.
Was one of my three favs in the bunch, probably my number 1. So I’m happy the jurors had taste! What a voice he has!
Hueston was great and a potential winner for me, liked Loko too but the rest was a bit underwhelming to me unfortunately
AMC is what the Swedish mafia envisions for the actual contest, lip sync performances of people who look good with stagings made by the same 2 people. It works in the US but it will never work in Europe.
What we saw yesterday is very unlikely to work in the US. It certainly doesn’t seem to spark a lot of talk-about on social media. Ironically, when I Google ASC news, most results I get are in Scandinavian languages.
social media buzz matters but it’s not be-all and end-all; give it a bit of time. it trended pretty significantly and the k-pop mania helps it (too bad the song isn’t better).
Actually, yesterday it was #2 trending here on twitter
Ok, songs weren’t as bland as I worried from the previews, although sadly there was still nothing that would go outside of comfort zone like in Eurovision (which is not surprising, given that Melodifestivalen is not exactly known for courageous entries). The format is weird though. Too little time is spend on results and most disappointing things is that audience qualifiers are not announced on the show, but only days later. Meh. It’s more of a concert than a competition. It’s not bad but I’m not sure the show will survive. My suggestion would be to ditch semifinals. Have 7… Read more »
They can’t do voting results in the same hour because the show doesn’t air live on the West Coast. Not sure what they’re going to do for the grand final.
How do they do it on other live shows?
They will either have a show the following day where results are revealed, or wait till the following week just like ASC is doing.
There was one season of Rising Star which basically let the East Coast decide everything, although the West Coast could “save” certain acts the East Coast did not vote for.
Yes it does? It started at 5:00pm on the west coast and 8:00pm on the east coast. It’s HAWAII and the other overseas territories that are why we have extra voting time and announce qualifiers one week later.
And I’m sure when semis come after all songs have been heard at least once already, voting would open before the show.
NBC is not carrying the show live at 5 PM on the West Coast. Sure, the show is airing live at that time in the eastern half of the country, and west coasters could get their hands on those feeds if they really want to, but NBC intends for them to watch the show 3 hours delayed in primetime on their local affiliates. Even Rising Star, whose whole thing was having the votes appear in real-time, did not air live in the West Coast. They did allow the west coast to vote and their results were displayed in real time… Read more »
heats and semis are all likely going to stay in this format with only finals having some sort of a live vote… just like eurovision. this show is produced by people who are at the heart of eurovision, they certainly considered everything. the production value of last night was great and the songs are decent – exactly like all other country selections.
Fyi. Cazzi Opea from Melodifestivalen is part of the writers of Wonderland. Hopefully next year she will come to Melodifestivalen with a Kpop act includes Korean lyrics or something
I’d love for her to perform something more of a K Pop genre but I think Korean lyics might come across a bit problematic. But otherwise I’d love to see it
That explains why it was so good!
If you can’t sing “live” you shouldn’t be on a live performance show. That and what’s with the over production of the performances , was a big turn off .
The only song I liked was Wonderland and I could not even hear it live because they covered up AleXa’s live vocal with the studio cut. What’s the point? lol.
Singing over a backtrack is a common practice in Korea, specially if they’re performing at music shows like SBS Inkigayo. Sadly, I think the producers (or at least the sound mix guy) overdid it with the backtrack on this one.
Whoa enjoying the love here for my state (Iowa) and tickled pink I can actually vote in this contest. I am disappointed that you can vote for your own state though. This gives more populous states an unfair advantage! I thought about abstaining from voting for mine out of principle but we are small but mighty yes we can. Oklahoma is my favorite though.
Someone here or in another thread said that you can’t vote for your own state, especially if you’ve registered your zip code to all three voting platforms (NBC website, NBC app, TikTok). But I think the rank-based points system used in ESC will help give all the states the same weight of their voting power.
I’m not sure TIKTOK voting requires a zip code.
I registered my zipcode and I was able to vote for my state. Maybe those votes just won’t count? The website isn’t very clear on how votes are being tabulated, regionally or a straight popularity contest.
Can someone please update me on what happened? I’m trying to muster as much information as I can from the comments, but I’m just confused. Who are the four qualifiers? I don’t have a VPN so I cannot watch 🙁
There is only one qualifier, that’s the jury vote. RI qualified. The other 3 will be announced next week.
That makes sense. People are just discovering the show and probably need more time to consider who to vote.
Plus, Guam, American Samoa, and Northern Marianas Islands will see the show much later than the continent.
Loved Every Minute!!!
And we have more than 6 on stage. – Game Changer!
Great First run. The strongest voice tonight is also the jury qualifier, going directly into the Semi.
How Shocking. Y’all, we have arrived!!!
I agree. Probably could use a little less ads in-between the performances. But hey, you gotta pay the bills somehow.
Welcome to American TV—which is why people are leaving for streaming options
and that’s why ads stick around for live formats
this is VERY commercial and so ads aren’t going anywhere. with the current state of media, only sports and live events are the way to make good money from ads in the US.
To me, it was decent. Reminded me of Melfest more than Eurovision. I thought Puerto Rico was the best. I liked Oklahoma a lot too but gave it less votes because I had to strain my ears to see if there were even any live vocals. Regardless, I’d be satisfied if they went to the semifinal round.
i feel people forget that a one-off eurovision format with 56 entries wouldn’t work. this has always meant to imitate melodi. you have to make money off this, so heats, i.e .a full season of a tv show, are the only way to go.
Don’t go out of your way to watch, all filler, no killer.
They’ve turned Eurovision into another plastic American singing competition where you don’t even have to sing live apparently. It’s like i’m watching the Voice or something.
Everyone sang live. Didn’t you hear Michael Bolton’s shakey vocals a the beginning?
Wasn’t talking about him. A few people didn’t.
I’m pretty sure they don’t lip sync on the voice…
1) That’s disappointed! It hasn’t be called “American Song Contest”. It shall be called “Americafestivalen”. Mr. Björkman is a ver f***ed astute person. Like he sees that Eurovision is turning to be a truth european song contest (grazie Italia – by the moment – for show us what’s quality) that all countries are trying to show their productions that swedish producers are not being so populars like years ago. So swedish crew flew to USA and they settled like a plastic version Greta Garbo in United States. 2) Were there playback or weren’t there? I hear songs like if I… Read more »
Technically, it’s a song contest so the nomenclature makes sense. If you’re disappointed that it has a Melfest-style format, how would you suggest that 56 songs in contention be trimmed down across three nights of a single week in 2-hour outings?
I’m disappointed because the whole production is so Melfest. In United States there are amazing tv productions and they can do it by their own way
It’s still the first season so they’re still teasing the waters first and foremost.
the only format that could succeed is melodifestivalen – eurovision is too short. there’s a great interview in billboard (you can find it online) where this is explained and elaborated. this is a very serious endeavor on part of NBC and thinking they didn’t think every single thing through would be silly.
Here link, if anyone wants to watch the full show- https://streamtape.com/v/R9kvb4RP4QidPpj
Okay, I see some comments accusing AleXa of lip-syncing, so I’m just going to clarify that she actually wasn’t. If you have your earphones on or you have really good ears, you can tell her actual voice from the backtrack. Other than that, she totally nailed her performance.
So, yeah, I think they should replace the sound mix guy immediately before Heat 2, stat!
Y’all don’t need to lie to yourselves, she lipped, point blank period.
I don’t know what kind of video (or fantasy land) you’re watching but you have to be petty and delusional to think that.
Um, there were other people much more blatantly lip synching, so don’t understand what you’re complaining about. ?
She didn’t, but you can’t hear her voice over the playback. IDK why they did that, it’s annoying.
Wonderland is fantastic and I loved her performance but I wanna see it and actually hear it live. Hopefully in the semis that will be the case. Otherwise I’m not sure what the point of the live shows if some of the songs aren’t actually live. I know she’s singing BTW, you just can’t hear her.
Genuinely curious for those who watched it outside of the United States…what was being shown during our ads (commercials)? There was an ad after every act and it was a bit annoying. Did other countries have ad breaks as well?
Act two just finished, better ( had to look up what K-Pop was). Show says live but video quality feels like an old recording.
Looked good to me.
Just watched the first act, hope it gets better. Might be my first and last watch.
Folks! Not sure how known this is but I just noticed that Cazzi Opeia (from Melo) was one of the songwriters for Oklahoma’s song! How fitting! Haha
I’m not surprised, instead I’m very happy for her, she’s a big name among K-pop songwriters! 😀
First I was apprehensive on how they could ruin this…. but I am pleasantly surprised. I did not hate the American version of this show. It definitely is americanized, I was afraid it’d be too similar to other shows- but it was not to the extent I thought it be.
I am now looking forward to continue viewing the competition.
My top 4
Rhode Island- Hueston
Minnesota- Yam Haus
Connecticut- Michael Bolton
I want to add Oklahoma- AleXa…. but I cant assess fairly with vocals not being live…
I haven’t yet heard Oklahoma’s (can’t find it on youtube yet) but I had a similar thought when it came to Puerto Rico. Love the song but it wasn’t altogether clear how much he was singing live…
For now Conneticut, Iowa and Wisconsin are my three qualifiers (excluding the jury qualifier Rhode Island).
Just found a clip of Oklahoma. I really love the song and the dancing but… it really seems like she isn’t singing at all…
The backing track was too loud. She was definitely singing.
Someone should replace the sound mix guy immediately.
As long as Arkansas and Oklahoma qualify I’d be happy 🙂
I knew Hueston from Rhode Island was going to qualify 20 seconds into his song.
Now, when they get to the Grand Final, will they award points the same way they do at Eurovision, with half the points coming from the viewers and half from the juries?
It will be a 50/50 jury-public vote split and apparently in real time so the territories like Guam, American Samoa, and the Northern Marianas will have to be up on Tuesday mid-morning. Bjorkman shared that the allocation of points will more or less be the same but the delivery of the jury 12’s will probably be different because the show doesn’t have the time to watch 56 jurors share their points. I’m thinking that the best way to do this is by grouping the jurors in groups according to regions i.e.: New England, Appalachia+East, Southeast, US Caribbean, Midwest, Pacific Northwest,… Read more »
The jury picking a ballad as their favorite of the night.
Well. You can’t complain that there’s NOTHING in common with Eurovision lol
Fun fact: Rhode Island is actually not an island…Not exactly.
Funner fact: The full name is Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
And even funner-funner fact as I learned about this when I was following the US elections in 2020: Rhode Island had a referendum whether or not to permanently shorten its long-form name, and many agreed to drop “Providence Plantations” off its name for good. 😀