Baldwin up for state honor
Vina native Joseph Baldwin, who is known across the area for his singing and songwriting abilities, beat out more than 50 other contestants to win the North Alabama Region’s “Songwriter’s Contest” on June 25 with his new song, “I’m Alabama.”
Baldwin is now one of four finalists who will compete for a chance to be the winner of the Alabama Department of Tourism’s “Songwriter’s Contest,” a component of the department’s Year of Music campaign.
The competition was open to anyone who was born in or lives in the state; who can write lyrics as well as the music to accompany them; who can perform the song for judges or have someone perform the song for them; and whose song is about Alabama or has Alabama mentioned in the lyrics.
Baldwin said he enjoys writing songs so when he found out about the contest, he knew he wanted to enter, but he wasn’t very optimistic about the outcome.
“I’ve entered many contest like this in the past and have been met with many disappointments,” Baldwin said. “I really wasn’t getting my hopes up about this contest, so when I found out I won I was very surprised. But overall it was just a cool feeling to finally win something like this.”
Baldwin said his habit for procrastinating led him right up until the due date before he submitted his song, but he was proud of the finished product.
“For this song, I went back in my memory and recalled all the things about Alabama that I learned when I was in school,” Baldwin said. “I wanted this to be a song that makes you proud to be from Alabama if you are and makes you want to be from Alabama if you aren’t.”
Baldwin will compete in the grand finale competition on July 25 at the Ritz Theater in Sheffield during the W. C. Handy Music Festival and the Governor’s Conference on Tourism. The winner of the competition will receive $2,000 and a recording session at FAME Recording Studios in Muscle Shoals.
A clip from Baldwin’s performance at the North Alabama Region competition can be seen on Alabama Tourism’s YouTube Channel at www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSwC_n1IUXM.