Just hours after we launched our poll “Who should sing for Georgia at Eurovision 2015?”, national selection finalist Nina Sublatti jumped into a huge lead. The popular rocker chick, artist, composer, and vocal coach has emerged as a huge favourite to win the contest and sing in Vienna. Our Georgia correspondent Rezo Mamsikashvili recently caught up with her. Nina tells Rezo about her musical idols, Eurovision and why she called her song “Warrior.”
Hello Nina! Congratulations on making the top 5 in Georgia. How do you feel?
First of all, I note that the Eurovision qualifying competition is good news because a few years without publicly electing the singer is unacceptable. Of course, I was glad to go to the top five, because after several years of watching the Eurovision, I have developed an opinion about how to present Georgia’s singer. I hope my fans will support me and I’ll represent my country at the competition
We know your song is called “Warrior”. Could you tell us a bit about it?
The song is by me and generally I wrote on Georgian women. If we look at the history of Georgia, we see that women have always been important figures. They simply sought to be good women, good mothers, good teachers. The Georgian woman has to be able to control her temper and raise her child as a warrior. So, she became a warrior. In Georgian I chose the title “Mother Man”. Unfortunately, this word does not exist in other languages, and because of this I called it “Warrior”.
The first thing that came to my head was singing and the performance of the female characters. I abstained from a full performance at the qualifying contest, because it takes more time. If I will be able to get to the stage of the Eurovision Song Contest then certainly I will be clear about the story and adventures, which every woman goes through in this country. History is most important for Georgian people. As a Georgian woman, I will try to explain performance clearly.
How long did it take you to write the song?
I created the song ”Warrior” — the text, music and everything else belongs to me. I had to submit several versions for the competition, but none were satisfying. They didn’t have enough salt. At 4 o’clock at night, when I thought that all hope of writing the song was gone, I decided to write the last one. And if I didn’t like that one I would not take a part in a competition. I started to meditade. I gethered all my energy and I sang a melody with its lyrics. I liked it. I spent approximately 30 minutes on its structure. At last I sat down and by 7 o’clock I had finished it. I spent a few days thinking about the song, because the Eurovision format is different from my genre, which is ambient, psychedelic and alternative. So it took me a little time to rearrange it as pop music.
What do you think of Amber’s “Warrior”?
I don’t listen to it.
Nina, you have the most interesting look in the competition. How would you describe your personal style?
Thanks for the compliment! I always find it hard to talk about myself. My style is free, I am. I like variety, so I often change my look. I like experimenting. Style is as a game. You must go around and around, but I must always be ”me”.
What are you doing,when you have free time?
I never have free time actually. I love to work. I worked non-stop for three years and only paused recently — for seven days. Once I got back to the studio I could feel my soul.
Are you big fan of Eurovision?
Eurovision is a good competition. I like the quality and comprehensiveness. Also, I’m glad that it’s open to such a small country like Georgia. Georgians need the support of Europe. I hope that any country can do well, regardless of how big or powerful it is outside of the contest. It does not matter if I represent Georgia or someone else does. I want to see my Georgia finish in a high position.
What does Eurovision mean for you?
For me Eurovision about breaking boundaries. Georgian artists find it difficult to go out and work in Europe. Therefore Eurovision is a good chance for singers. Representatives of other countries are listening to our creativity. It is very important to me personally. Because my job I spend my life writing music and lyrics. I have my own studio. We are undertaking the performances, sewing costumes for me, and I care for my image. For these reasons, my people appreciate me. My first album was highlighted in the music charts. I’m working on the second album now, and my fans are looking forward to it. I’m working in the music school “Teen club” and I’m teaching the young performers, working as an image maker there too. In short, I want to work in this area extensively, because in our country there are very few resources for doing something. All of this together represents Eurovision.
Who was your favorite Eurovision contestant from Georgia?
My favorite was Eldrine — and not because they are my friends. Unfortunately, Georgia does not have a budget, which allows for an unprecedented show, so everything depends on the performer. In this regard, I think the band was very effective — with the text and with the song.
Which Eurovision song do you like from all of Eurovision History?
“Euphoria” by Loreen, because it’s a very memorable song and very well done.
Can you tell me which three words are associated with Georgia?
“Woman”, “Believe” and “what the hell”.
Your cover of Britney Spears’ “Toxic” is very popular. Is she one of your musical idols? Who else is?
I know only one Britney Spears song, which I did. As a singer I like Janis Joplin, Brian
Could you tell us about competiting on Georgian Idol? What did you gain from the experience?
I was interested in commercial music on this time. I wanted to come out of the underground for some time, because the commercial music is a bit dormant in Georgia and needed to sober up. That’s why I did a performance with Britney Spears’ “Toxic”, which should not be surprising. Georgia wasn’t used to such bold staging. Once that was done worked with more successful music schools who had invited teachers from around the world, and they knew what to I had to do to succeed. When that happened I won the show. Of the three finalists, I got nearly 50 percent of the votes. This is because I made a huge committment to the format. I have been working nonstop since winning that day and each of my songs has done well with the people. This project has given me a lot!
You have many tattoos. How are they individually important to you and what do they represent about yourself?
In general I like to do small sketches. Especially when something is exciting and memorable. That says something about the memorable tattoos on me.
Have you already listened to the other songs? Do you have any favourites and who do you see as your biggest competitor?
I do not like the word competitor. Wherever I go to try defuse tensions. Therefore, no one is a competitor. In my past, I have no perception of competitors. I think of them as friends. When working with a certain group of people you form the most important friendships. I’ve known all of the competitors — except Ms. Eteri — for a long time. I wish all of them success and happiness.
Do you have a special message for your fans and followers on wiwibloggs?
I would like to thank wiwibloggs readers for all the positive messages about my song! I always pay great attention to them, because my songs are like my children. I would also like to congratulate you and wish you success for the New Year!
Thank you for Interview Nina. Good luck!