Winners! + Go Hawks!

All right, I just got an email from Sally DeFord, and I’m ready to announce the competition winners. I was really sad when the online poll didn’t work out last week, but the truth is, I think it made the selection of winners cleaner and more fair. I had a panel of judges with many music degrees and tens of thousands of hours of musical experience between them. They judged the contestants based on five criteria (pitch, tone quality, expression/style, uniqueness of voice, and overall performance/effort). I did not participate in the judging. Sally’s deliberations ended up dovetailing exactly with the final judging outcome after all the marks were added up, which I think means we have some very solid results.

So, without further ado, here are the winners:

First Place: Joshua Watson

Second Place: Cecily Jorgensen

Third Place: Franchesca Retford

Congratulations to all three who placed! I will contact you directly to get your address so I can send your prize.

And thank you to all who submitted and made this song their own. I will be featuring each contestant (winners and non-winners alike) in an interview along with their version of the song once a month during the year 2014.


In other news, I’m not sure if you heard, but there’s this thing happening tomorrow. Like, a sports game. Two teams are playing football. It’s kind of a big deal, especially since I live in Seattle where the entire city is covered in blue and green.

So, I’m not really into sports. BUT, I have kind of felt swept up in the momentum of this one. I was really, really proud last night when we were out with some friends and I knew more about what is happening tomorrow than Lolly. This was a triumph for me.

Lolly: So, wait, who is #12? Why do I keep seeing his jersey everywhere?

Josh: Sweetie, the #12 is not for a player, it refers to us as fans. Like, something about if a player got injured, we would join in? *voice trails off in insecurity*

Friend: That’s right Josh! Good work! You knew a thing about sports!

Lolly: Oh, that’s funny! I thought it was one of the players. I thought it might be that Crabtree guy.

Josh: …Oh, I know all about this because I am obsessed with reading news on the internet! Lolly, Crabtree is not a Seahawk. He’s… on that other team that they played recently. And that Sherman guy had all the drama with him when he disrespected him in an interview or something, and then he spent the week going on shows using big words to show he went to Stanford and knows how to speak proper English. See how I know things? I know about sports! It’s like I’m a real sports fan or something!

Lolly: I’ve never been more turned on by you.

Josh and Lolly start making out.

Friend: You guys are gross.

In conclusion:

GO HAWKS!!!!!!!!

Photo credit here


  1. Ironic that the top three singers in the public opinion poll were the bottom three according to the highly experienced, objective and talented judges. Coincidental? I say nay. Obviously the judges allowed their decisions to be jaded by the trouble with the public voting portion of the contest. Unfortunate, but that's life. Congrats anyway to Josh, who did have a solid performance. The other two I just don't understand. One was all vocal mechanics and the other was as bland as a barbecue sandwich in Utah.

    1. Okay anonymous, I will be honest. This comment made me really mad. You assumed things that weren't true, and then totally slammed some very talented people who were singing a song about unconditional love. I'm sure you are a delightful, wonderful person who simply loves one of the other contestants of this contest, but your comment just stirred the hornets nest of my soul and my inner 8th grade teacher is here to put you in your place. Because you are breathtakingly out of line.

      1. Your facts couldn't be more off. The judges finished their assessment of the performances of this competition two months ago. In order for them to have been at all swayed by the public opinion poll portion of this competition, they would have had to know how to time travel. They are highly experienced, objective and talented musicians, but I do admit, they don't have the ability to travel to the future and see a public opinion poll that will happen two months after their assessment to let it affect their opinions.

      2. The public poll had very different results because it was hacked into. That's the whole point of why it was removed from the competition in the first place. The numbers were not accurate. I have the documentation to prove that the poll was drastically and irreparably tampered with.

      3. Sally DeFord? Remember her? Her opinion was the same as the judges'. She was very, very impressed with all of the performances, but these were her picks as well.

      4. I think the fact that you just said some of the most hurtful comments I've yet seen in this competition, and did so under the cloak of anonymity, should give you some pause.

      And to the two winners who were just insulted by a careless anonymous comment, take it from someone who is verbally attacked on the Internet very frequently: pay him or her no mind, and just move on with your day. Your performances were beautiful, and you deserve to have placed in this competition.

      You won fair and square.

      I'm taking my girls to lunch.

      Over and out.

    2. Almost everyone knows that public opinion polls are more of a popularity contest i.e. who has the most friends on facebook that will vote, anything else.

      I am glad the contest was judged by judges and not popularity.

    3. I think the BBQ sandwiches at Sugarhouse BBQ are quite good. And Q4U, which is located in our lovely Deseret's beautiful Kearns city (ami right, Josh?) is also good. My own pulled pork recipe is not bad. Josh if you and the girls ever come visit I will pull out the Wonder hamburger buns and make you some.

  2. You know more things about sports than I do, Josh. See, you are not the bottom of the sports totem pole. My mom and I only knew that the Superbowl was happening at all because there are way more ads for snacks than usual this week.

  3. Thanks Josh, for hosting this competition. It gave me a chance to hear a dozen wonderful voices I would never have otherwise heard, and I really, truly enjoyed listening to every one of them.

    I'm very glad you had such qualified judges. I'll let you in on a little secret… when I weigh in on judging in any form, my input is likely to end in a tie and therefore affect the standings not at all. (My kids will attest to this… complete with eye-rolling, exasperated sighs and anecdotes.) And so it proved in this contest. Knowing myself, I felt that I could not do better than to respect the evaluations of your judging panel (who are much better qualified than I am!) and simply agree with them. So my contribution to the judging was to listen to *all* the singers again, and wish they could all have been winners. Pretty sorry, I know, but there it is. Judging just isn't my thing.

    I'm glad you know a thing or two about football these days. You do realize that this song thing is a sort of Seahawks-Broncos collaboration? Which is undoubtedly why the season played out this way. Which means they should hire us and pay us millions of dollars to do such collaborations every year. Just think of all the contests you could sponsor on that sort of budget… since you are no way tired of sponsoring contests!

    For the sake of fairness, I think it's important to add one final note: Go Broncos! 😉

  4. Haha! I hadn't even thought of the Bronco's/Seahawks thing here. That would have made for a really fun twist to this post. Thanks again for your magnanimity in this competition. You are the best. And hilarious, to boot.

  5. Josh that was a great reply to Anonymous! I also agree with Leslie that most public polls are a popularity contest, but I do have to say that everyone who participated were AMAZING. I cannot sing worth beans so I always appreciate those who can sing.
    hahaha I'm glad I didn't see this post earlier because I would have said that Broncos Rock!! But I'm going to save me the embarrassment and say Seahawks Rule! 😉 (I can change sides because my team is the 49ners 🙂 )

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