No. 24 running back tackles new competition


(Photo: Alex Kirkpatrick, Digital Editor/The Simpsonian)

by Alex Kirkpatrick, Digital Editor

He’s the best running back in the Iowa Conference; he’s the fourth Academic All-American in Simpson history; he’s a co-founder of Voices United – a group dedicated to raising forth racial issues.

Now, Altoona native Jordan Beem is tackling a unique front: auditioning for “The Voice.”

“I was thinking about (auditioning) during the summer and throughout the fall, and my girlfriend randomly signed me up,” Beem said. “I was like, ‘Wow, that’s different, but I’m excited. It kind of just went from there.”

A sultry tenor, Beem is known for posting snippets of contemporary and indie rock covers on YouTube and Instagram, including “Come On Get Higher” by Matt Nathanson, “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz” and “Say Something” by A Great Big World – some of which have been viewed more than 25,000 times.

Before singing in front of Christina Aguilera, Blake Shelton, Adam Levine and Pharrell Williams, Beem will have to wait in a line filled with thousands of like-minded hopefuls.

Contestants will be taken to the first round of auditions and sing a cappella in front of a judge/producer.

Should a singer make it through the first round, he or she must return at a later date for a callback.

Beem said he’s had experience under his belt.

The junior, who is majoring in history, has also tried out for the “The X Factor” and “American Idol,” though was more successful on the former.

“I’ve performed at multiple different places – the farmers’ market, bars, restaurants, weddings,” Beem said. “I’ve sang the National Anthem once at a Barnstormer’s game.”

His singing career began in eighth grade, when he took a music class and picked up a guitar for the first time.

Since then, he’s written original material, following suit of musicians, like The Civil Wars and John Mayer.

“I write some of my own songs, but for the most part, I just cover other songs,” Beem said.

Beem accredits his talent to his supportive family.

“My dad has been pretty instrumental,” Beem said. “He paid for a lot of stuff and a lot of things that I have, as far as guitars when I was younger.”

“They’ve gone with me to ‘The X Factor’ and to ‘American Idol,’ and hopefully they’ll go with me to ‘The Voice’ as well,” he said.

The audition is Feb. 6 in Chicago.

To visit Beem’s YouTube channel, go to