The BBC have kept their cards very close to their chest over the course of this Eurovision season. But finally — after a tense few days of speculation — the broadcaster has revealed who will wave the flag at Eurovision 2020 for the United Kingdom. James Newman will sing “My Last Breath” at the contest in Rotterdam.
Rumours around Newman’s participation reached fever pitch on Wednesday when the audio of “My Last Breath” leaked online from a Czech radio site. Now we know those rumours were indeed correct.
The big reveal was made on the Ken Bruce show on BBC Radio 2 this morning, where James was interviewed. The song was also played on the BBC Radio 1 Breakfast show with Greg James.
— BBC Eurovision?? (@bbceurovision) February 27, 2020
Newman also used the interview on Radio 2 to confirm his appearance at Eurovision in Concert and the London Eurovision Party.
James Newman to sing “My Last Breath” for the UK at Eurovision 2020
James Newman is a British singer-songwriter. He has an extensive list of songwriting credits on many chart-hitting songs, including “Waiting All Night” by Rudimental (feat. Ella Eyre) and “Brave” by Calvin Harris (feat. John Newman).
His Eurovision 2020 entry, “My Last Breath”, is the first track in which Newman is credited as the lead artist. He has previously only been a featured vocalist on songs, such as “Therapy” by Armin van Buuren.
James Newman – “My Last Breath”
“My Last Breath” is a contemporary pop track with strong percussion instrumentation. The song begins with a strumming guitar before Newman’s vocals and a sturdy drum beat enter the scene. Things pick up further in the chorus, which features syncopated rhythms in the second half.
Lyrically, James sings to his loved one. He tells them that he’ll be there for them no matter what: “If we were deep sea divers / And no one came to find us / If you had nothing left / I’d give you my last breath”.
The track was co-written by Ed Drewett, Adam Argyle and Iain James. Between them, they’ve written numerous hits for established acts, including Little Mix, Dua Lipa, One Direction and Olly Murs. Iain James is also a past Eurovision winner. He co-wrote “Running Scared” by Ell & Nikki, which went on to win Eurovision 2011 for Azerbaijan.
Who is James Newman?
James Newman hails from Settle, Yorkshire, in North England. In 2014, he won a Brit Award for British Single of the Year for his involvement with Rudimental’s “Waiting All Night”. He has also co-written hits such as “Blame” by Calvin Harris (feat. John Newman) and “Love Me Like You” by Little Mix.
Music runs in the family. The Eurovision 2020 act is the older brother of John Newman, who also has an extensive list of songs and songwriting credits under his name.
James is also no stranger to Eurovision. He was a co-writer of “Dying to Try” by Brendan Murray, who represented Ireland at the contest in 2017.
The UK at Eurovision 2020
In September 2019, the BBC confirmed it was ditching its national final Eurovision: You Decide and turning to internal selection instead.
The broadcaster has partnered with the music company BMG. At the time of the announcement, the BBC said that BMG shared the vision of “selecting a song with broad international appeal and securing an artist who embodies the spirit and values of the Eurovision Song Contest.”
The broadcaster is hoping that this internal selection process will improve the UK’s fortunes at Eurovision. Most recently, Michael Rice finished last in the grand final of Eurovision 2019 in Tel Aviv with his song “Bigger Than Us”.
What do you make of the “My Last Breath”? Do you think the UK can reach the left-hand side of the scoreboard in Rotterdam? Let us know in the comments below!