Choosing a song for talent is difficult. You want it to be upbeat and catchy. The judges should recognize it, and possibly have an emotional tie to it. The lyrics should be meaningful. It can’t hurt for audience participation either.
It is generally a good idea to choose a song put out within the past 5 years. Some locals even push within the past 2 years. Miss America should be relevant, modern, and a trendsetter. More often than not, she will do this with a modern song.
Quick Tip: Send your song choice in as soon as you can. Often times if two contestants have the same song, whoever sent it in first gets the song!
The worry with pop songs is that they are too trendy. Will they be overplayed by the time you move on to the next level? If you choose a song within the last year, make sure it is working its way up the charts when you start. Otherwise, choose a song that has been off the radio for at least a year. That way people are no longer sick of it, but it is still fresh on their mind.
Another worry to keep in mind is the general persona of the artist. Even if the lyrics in the specific song are not offensive, the judges will think about the artist. Has he or she been in the news lately for something scandalous? Sure, Hannah Montana had some uplifting songs with great lyrics and catch melodies, but do you really want the judges to be thinking about the Wrecking Ball music video while you are performing a beautiful classical ballet performance to The Climb? Be wary.
Remember: You can always take a song and have it remixed to a different style, or perhaps use a cover. Instrumental versions are great if they lyrics aren’t substantial but the song has a good beat. Boyce Avenue performs acoustic covers of current hits, often giving a slower, ethereal feel to the songs.
Note: Be careful when choosing Disney or Broadway tunes at the local level. Not only are they beaten to death and over done, but may require royalties. These songs may not be allowed at the state or national level without paying a fee, and you may have to choose a new song if you win.
So, if you are competing in for a 2015 title, and what do you think the best songs of the year are?