#17 – Georgia
Take Me As I Am
Tornike Kipiani
Songwriters: Tornike Kipiani, Aleko Berdzenishvili

eCinemaOne, The Kirkham Report, and Planet BiblioMusica has begun its Countdown To the now-cancelled Eurovision Song Contest 2020! Over 41 days I’m bringing you all the info on each song this year ranked in order of my personal preference from bottom to top. I’ll give the reasons for my personal rankings, and some background info on the song, artist, songwriters, and such.  Again, these are MY opinions, and I realize that the ESC fan community is a rabid one, and rarely everyone agrees with everyone else, so as they say, your mileage may vary. As of the official announcement on March 20 2020, ALL of this year’s songs are now officially “lost”; Eurovision’s executive committee has stated that all songs in the ESC 2021 contest MUST be new, so there will never be an “Official” winner of ESC 2020 thanks to the Coronavirus/COVID-19 outbreak causing the contest’s first-ever cancellation. So this is my only chance to rank them. The songs will all be spotlighted on a special called Eurovision: Europe Shine a Light, which will air LIVE on May 16, when the Grand Final should have been held, so that’s at least SOMETHING…

ANNOUNCEMENT: FANS IN THE USA AND AROUND THE WORLD, IT’S TIME TO VOTE!!  COME VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE 2020 EUROVISION SONGS IN THE “TKRUROVISION 2020 CONTEST”! You can win one of four Amazon Gift Cards just for voting! See the rules HERE!  And go vote HERE! Ballot is open until Sunday, 4/19 at 12 Noon Eastern US Time!

In at #17 this year is the official entry from Georgia, “Take Me As I Am” by Tornike Kipiani. It is performed in English, and would have been performed 15th at the second semifinal on May 14. The country currently selects its entry in a combination of internal selection and participation in the Georgian “Idol” franchise. Georgia has announced that Kipiani will be retained to represent the country at ESC 2021.

Kipiani shot to national fame as the winner of season one of the Georgian ‘X Factor” franchise in 2014, and has had musical success in his country off and on since. He also won the 2020 edition of “Georgian Idol” and won the slot to represent the country at ESC.

What I’m thinking about this song…I absolutely love the double-edged sword this song plays with, and it’s uniquely on its own in this year’s contest. With lyrics demanding to know why his love prefers to try and make him over in ways that are associated with other ethnicities – dance like an Englishman, dress like an Italian, etc – , and at the same time is asking the same of people in general, using the same lyrics in challenging stereotypes across the board, and asking “why can’t you love me just the way I am?” Good question, excellent sentiment, and an amazing song. I wish it had more support, as I don’t know if it would have made the finals, but I sure hoped it would, that’s for sure…

2020 marks the country’s twelfth year of participation in the contest, Georgia making their debut in EuroVision in 2007. They have placed in the final eight of the twelve times they’ve participated, with this year’s entry never getting the chance to compete due to the cancellation. Their best showing has been ninth place. They have missed the finals the past two years.

Here’s the official music video  – check it out…

Join eCinemaOne, The Kirkham Report, and Planet BiblioMusica throughout the next 41 days as I bring you the 2020 entries, and also updates on the status of the songs and artists for this year. Hopefully the EBU will find a way to salvage this year’s contest – and if you want them to do so, use the hashtag #SaveEurovision2020 in all your social media posts!

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