Ash Adams / Courtesy of the artist
This year, I was blown away by the entries in the tiny office competition that I saw. We have received more than 6,000 entries from across the country. We saw tiny offices on the rooftops and on a subway platform; nestled in treetops, vans and laundromats. We have heard songs about the situations that make life difficult and the people who make it worth living.
But in the end, the judges and I could only choose one winning entry. We are very proud to share with you the music of Quinn Christopherson, winner of this year's Tiny Desk competition!
The entrance of Quinn surprised our jury from start to finish. His powerful song "Erase Me" is a nuanced interpretation of his experience as a transgender man who gets along better with the power of his voice. Standing in front of a majestic mount. Denali, Quinn and his group mate, Nick Carpenter, have created their own work of art.
When I called Quinn to tell him the good news, he was amazed and surprised. "You just spent all my life," he said from his home in Anchorage, Alaska. He was also very humiliated, claiming that he had "watched so many entrees" starring "so many talented people". He is right: we have seen a lot of talent this year. But in the middle of all the entries we watched, it was his song, the judges and I could not stop playing.
Lucy Dacus, another of this year's judges, agrees. She praised "Erase Me" for the way in which he concisely shares such a complex and personal message. "The song is so captivating and its performance seemed so serious," she told NPR's Noel King and me Morning edition. "I kept coming back to the video." (Listen to this interview on the audio link above.)
Soon, Quinn will come to Washington DC to play his own concert, Tiny Desk. After that, he will be touring with NPR Music and Blue Microphones to play alongside other artists who participated in the contest this year. We are excited to be back on the road to celebrate the artists we love.
Thank you to everyone who shared a song with us this year; we have seen so many excellent entries and have discovered new artists to love. And again, congratulations to Quinn, our newest winner of the contest.