by Robert Bell
The finalists, featuring several from Arkansas and a pair from, of all places, Malta, are:
Joel Dibble, Amherst, NY — "Alive"
Adam Hambrick, Conway, AR — "I Would Never"
Andrew Landry, Conway, AR — "Country Girl"
Edward O'Neil , Ontario, Canada — "Girls They Talk"
Daniel Winfield, Conway, AR — "Downpour"
Yolanda Venise Champion, Alexandria, VA — "Can't Wait"
Daniel Grear, Conway, AR — "Lonely Trees"
Bettina and Philippa Cassar, Bidnija, Malta — "Tom, Dick, and Harry"
David Pierce, Fayetteville, AR — "The Midwest"
Jonathon Lindsey, Little Rock, AR — "Fun Away"
The contest judges — Kris Allen, David Hodges and Andy Davis — will give live feedback to finalists and choose the grand prize winner at the showcase at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 3 at Hendrix College's Worsham Hall. Genre and age division winners will also be announced. Tickets are $10 at the door.
The contest's Grand Prize is an expenses-paid trip to Los Angeles, to record the winning song in a studio with award-winning producers Ryan Peterson and Nolan Sipe. Proceeds from the competition, including entry fees, sponsorships and showcase tickets, will benefit Blackbird Academy.