Italy: Mahmood to Tel Aviv!

Italy – Italian broadcaster, RAI, concluded the annual San Remo festival which historically chooses Italy’s Eurovision entry. This was the 5th night with all 24 entries presented again. The winner is Mahmood with “Soldi“!

This was tonight’s line-up (not the draw of tonight’s show):

  • Achille Lauro – Rolls Royce (1st participation)
  • Anna Tatangelo – Le nostre anime di notte (8th participation)
  • Arisa – Mi sento bene (5th participation)
  • Boombadash – Per un milione (1st participation)
  • Daniele Silvestri – Argento vivo (6th participation)
  • Einar – Parole nuove (1st participation – San Remo Giovani winner)
  • Enrico Nigiotti – Nonno Hollywood (2nd participation)
  • Ex-Otago – Solo una canzone (1st participation)
  • Francesco Renga – Aspetto che torni (8th participation)
  • Shade & Federica Carta – Senza farlo apposta (1st participation for both)
  • Ghemon – Rose viola (1st participation)
  • Il Volo – Musica che resta (2nd participation)
  • Irama – La ragazza con il cuore di latta (2nd participation)
  • Loredana Bertè – Cosa ti aspetti da me (11th participation)
  • Mahmood – Soldi (2nd participation – San Remo Giovani winner)
  • Motta – Dov’è l’Italia (1st participation)
  • Negrita – I ragazzi stanno bene (2nd participation)
  • Nek – Mi farò trovare pronto (4th participation)
  • Nino D’Angelo & Livio Cori – Un’altra luce (6th participation / first participation)
  • Paola Turci – L’ultimo ostacolo (11th participation)
  • Patty Pravo & Briga – Un po’ come la vita (9th participation / first participation)
  • Simone Cristicchi – Abbi cura di me (5th participation)
  • Ultimo – I tuoi particolari (2nd participation)
  • Zen Circus – L’amore è una dittatura (1st participation)

So there were 22 artists joined by the 2 “young” category winners, Einar and Mahmood. A few new comers join some long-time returnees like Loredana and Paola! A lot of songs are already available online, on the artists’ official youtube page for instance. You can check more information on the artists on Rai’s official site.

There were four nights during the week, with all artists presenting their songs, and the final was this Saturday, to join the fun of a second Super Saturday! Recently, the winner was asked to go to Eurovision and it’s now considered an actual national final, even if it’s a much older contest with its own history separate from the European contest.

After many commercial breaks and many guest artists performing through the night, we got the full results, and many honorary awards. The audience in the theater was definitely shouting Loredana after she was announced only 4th! Other favorite Irama had to settle for 7th. In the end, they took a bit longer to announce the Top 3:

  1. Mahmood – Soldi
  2. Ultimo – I tuoi particolari
  3. Il Volo – Musica che resta

It’s notable that Ultimo announced before the contest that he did not desire to go to Tel Aviv and to Eurovision. Was this taken into account by the jury, who placed Ultimo, who won 47% of televote (to Il Volo’s 39% and Mahmood’s only 14%), only second overall? Il Volo, Eurovision televote winners in 2015, had to settle to third and are not likely to go to the contest again… unless Mahmood backs down! But the juries’ strong support seem to imply that it’s RAI’s pick to the contest, over someone who didn’t want to go and singers who already went.

This is Mahmood’s performance in the first night:


EDIT: he has officially accepted to represent Italy to the Eurovision Song Contest 2019 in Tel Aviv! What do you think of this song? What are its chances in the contest?

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552 comments on “Italy: Mahmood to Tel Aviv!

  1. And that is what that gestapo A dal jury, yes, I’m sorry, but I have to call them gestapo A Dal jury does…
    Going against the audience all the time, they make ppl hate some entries which are nice and not guilty for what that horrible freaky Muppet show looking jury does.
    Acoustic Planet – “Nyári zápor” who were jury faves in the 1st semi, now have 2X more dislikes than likes! :(
    in 4 weeks, that so called jury have only 2 times 10 points…I don’t see the point in torturing candidates and downgrading constantly entries that audience likes..

  2. I honestly cannot get enough of “Soldi”. Even the video is top notch. How can even the flaws of Mahmood’s performance add rather than subtract really ? His voice conveys the pain, the isolation, the hardship imo in ways that are not directly evident but still get to the listener subconsciously. The whole performance tells a story. I dont know if it is the kind of song that can win over someone on first listen with all its finesse in order to win esc but it deserves it 100 %.

  3. As for all this situation in Italy right now we have once again jury bashing here which is not surprising. What IS surprising is that in order to defend said jury bashing we have now the use of racist populist politicians and conspiracy theorists and their rants as defense of that jury bashing.

    If the jury wants to vote for a song based on its message especially if it is well delivered it has every right to do so because the message is an integral part of the song. The problem here is ONE : Italy is drifting towards the far right so much that even the mention of a song that is not even pro-immigration per se but dares to talk about the struggles of a child of immigrants is enough to cause outrage. Neither the RAI jury nor Mahmood are responsible for these attacks this guy has to sustain. This has been the voting system forever and it allows for such disagreements. The ones responsible for this situation are Salvini, Di Maio and the neo nazi circus they carry with them in the form of a mob without regard for their words and actions and Mahmood’s insecure, immature sore loser opponent who is funneling the flames with his vain reaction.

    I hope Mahmood makes it to esc. If he is forced to withdraw due to the bullying he receives Italy is boycotted by me in esc. When fascism directly interferes with artistic expression and works as an intimidating factor I prefer to keep my distances. And Il Volo can honestly shove it if they are audacious enough to accept to go after that.

  4. I dunno why bit I still have echo in my head of Ariston audience shouting:
    “LO RE DA NA”
    It gives me strange, half pleasent, half totally unpleasent feeling! :/
    Somewhere in the shadow behind I see Mahmood’s face.. :(


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