Just days before the American television debut of “American Song Contest,” it has been revealed by the indy Star that a Greenwood, Indiana rapper, Josh Kimbowa, will represent the state on the new show. Even though in recent years popular performers from Indiana have gained national and international attention, the phenomenon of Hoosier state performers appealing to wider audiences is still new enough that it is worth noting.
“American Song Contest”: Josh Kimbowa
According to The indy Star and a brief search of Kimbowa, the rapper was a star student athlete before becoming known for his rap abilities. Kimbowa is reportedly influenced by Indiana’s “little bit of everything” musicality and his family’s roots in their native Uganda. The Indy Star reports Kimbowa’s father was in a band in Africa. Still, Kimbowa has already started to make a name for himself outside of Indiana. The rapper has toured widely and has opened for such notable acts as A$AP Rocky, 2 Chainz, and Wiz Khalifa. Kimbowa uses the stage name UG skywalkin.
On “American Song Contest,” Kimbowa will have to outperform 10 other acts in order to move from the Qualifying Round to the Semi-Finals. The show’s premise provides for voting by a committee of music experts from across the U.S. They will choose one semifinalist. Viewers will choose three more.
Presumably, Kimbowa’s previous experience with performing with widely famous musicians will prepare him for the work ahead of him on “American Song Contest.” it is unclear if the other performers will also be rappers. Curious viewers will likely want to know what standards rappers and others will be judged by.
While there are always pitfalls and payoffs for viewers who watch performance shows like “American Song Contest,” one major plus for contestants will be that all of the songs performed on the show will be included on a compilation release from Atlantic Records. Therefore, their appearances on “American Song Contest” will also serve as a major label debut for many participants. The recording release aspect alone places this performance show in a different class than the others. While eliminated performers on other shows are often express gratitude for the experience, a literal record of their work on the show might have been a better parting gift.
Kimbowa is well-positioned to do great things on “American Song Contest.” That he will represent Indiana gives local and regional viewers a little more to cheer for.
Here is Kimbowa’s latest video, “Crush.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-H33LM0Mns