IT’S OFFICIAL! The final four finalists were announced on E! Daily Pop this morning at 11:35 ET for the American Song Contest – congratulations to Michael Bolton (Connecticut), Chloe Fredericks (North Dakota), Grant Knoche (Texas), and Tenelle (American Samoa) for making it through the viewer vote in round two of the semi finals!
Your ten finalists are:
Alabama Ni/Co “The Difference”
American Samoa Tenelle “Full Circle”
Colorado Riker Lynch “Feel The Love”
Connecticut Michael Bolton “Beautiful World”
Kentucky Jordan Smith “Sparrow”
North Dakota Chloe Fredericks “Can’t Make You Love Me”
Oklahoma AleXa “Wonderland”
Tennessee Tyler Braden “Seventeen”
Texas Grant Knoche “Mr. Independent”
Washington Allen Stone “A Bit of Both”
The BIGGEST shock coming out of week two of the semifinals was the elimination of two fan favorites, California’s Sweet Taboo and Puerto Rico’s Christian Pagan, as well as Jury favorite, Kansas’ Broderick Jones.
Now, according to the original plan for ASC, and this may have changed, they were going to announce the winner on the finals the same way Eurovision does theirs – the Jury members would appear and cast their votes, and then the states would be counted one by one until all fifty states, Washington DC, and the five territories participating were all counted and we had a winner.
Now, here’s something interesting – I think BOTH of the Jury’s picks in the finals – Tennessee’s Tyler Braden and Washington’s Allen Stone – would NOT have had enough support from the fans to make it through their respective rounds. I say this because this week especially but also in Semi-final one, the audience-only picks came mostly from the bottom half of the Jury rankings, a clear indicator that the audience and the juries do NOT agree on the songs. That was also clearly evident from week one, when Ryan Charles’ “New Boot Goofin'” (Wyoming) became a HUGE streaming hit on Spotify and other streaming services despite finishing in eleventh place that week – it wasn’t enough to carry him through the semi’s as a redemption pick though.
Going strictly on gut feeling, I feel that there are three potential strong winners, and three possible underdogs that could all take the final week and win the contest. The strong songs – the ones that appear to be showing the most fan support and thus most likely to take the win – are “Beautiful World”, Michael Bolton, Connecticut; “Sparrow”, Jordan Smith, Kentucky; and “Wonderland”, AleXa, Oklahoma. The three that could sneak in and nab a win or a spot in the top three appear to be “Mr Independent”, Grant Knoche, Texas; “Feel The Love”, Riker Lynch, Colorado; and “The Difference”, Ni/Co, Alabama. The remaining four songs – “Full Circle”, Tenelle, American Samoa; “Can’t Make You Love Me”, Chloe Fredericks, North Dakota; “Seventeen”, Tyler Braden, Tennessee; and “A Bit of Both”, Allen Stone, Washington – will depend on their individual fan pockets if they can move up the ladder. I’m betting Tennessee and Washington don’t have it, but American Samoa and North Dakota could have, and might make a play for higher positioning in the end, if not winning outright.
Voting begins at 5 PM ET on Sunday, May 8th and will run through the end of the performances on the finals on May 9th. After that, it’s all over until they announce the winner! The winner will be on their way to Turin, Italy to perform during the voting interval on Saturday at the finals of the 66th Eurovision Song Contest.