Portugal are kick-starting their Eurovision search one more on Saturday, with the famous Festival da Canção beginning with its first semi-final. One of the participants in Saturday’s show is soul and rock band The Black Mamba, who will take part with “Love Is on My Side”.
We spoke with the band ahead of this weekend’s show about the unique and touching story behind their song, Portugal’s “explosive cocktail” and how they would celebrate if they won Eurovision 2021…
Olá, The Black Mamba! First of all, thank you for taking the time to speak to us. What can you tell us about yourselves? What should we all know about The Black Mamba?
Hey!…we are a soul/funk/blues/rock band… behind these ballads that people know us best for, there lies some nasty rock’n’rollers though 🙂
Can you remember your first experiences in music? What made you want to be musicians?
It was a long time ago beside a fireplace in winter. Most of us started at a very young age.
What was behind your decision to take part in this year’s Festival da Canção?
It happened organically. Firstly I [Tatanka, lead singer and songwriter] was invited to be the songwriter then, when it came to pick the song, I guess ”Love Is on My Side” was the right one. So I decided to choose The Black Mamba to perform it.
What is the message behind your FdC entry “Love Is on My Side”?
It’s about an old woman’s story, we met her in Amsterdam while touring there in 2018. Basically everything went wrong in her life, from drug addiction to prostitution and so on. But at the end of the day she has always felt that love has always been there for her. That truly inspired me.
So this was a decisive factor to pick this song. I’m really hoping that she gets to listen to it and realize that her story really inspired me. Maybe it happens if we make it to Rotterdam… we’ll see.
What are your general impressions of Eurovision? Do you have any favourite entries from the contest?
To be honest we really haven’t had the opportunity to check it out yet, but we will.
If you could perform at any venue or festival in the world, which one would it be and why?
It’s hard to pick only one. Luckily we have performed in some of the biggest festivals around the world, such as Rock in Rio in Rio de Janeiro. Maybe the Royal Albert Hall. most of our biggest influences performed there. it’s a legendary venue with loads of history!
What is your favourite thing about Portugal that the rest of the world should know about?
The food and the weather would be the obvious answers, but the music is so good here, so many ancient cultures mixed from the Arabic to Celtic, African and so on. It makes us one hell of an explosive cultural cocktail and it’s a shame that people around the world don’t get to know it better.
Hopefully, the internet helps to break those barriers…
One last question – what would be the first thing you did if you won Eurovision in Rotterdam?
Celebrate as proper distinguished rock ‘n rollers, without the hotel room destruction of course! 🙂
Thank you for taking the time to speak to us The Black Mamba. We wish you the best of luck in Festival da Canção!
The Black Mamba will take part in Saturday’s first semi-final of Festival da Canção with the song “Love Is on My Side”, hoping to represent Portugal in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam.
What do #YOU think of “Love Is on My Side”? Share your thoughts with us on our forum HERE or join the discussion below and on social media!