Eurovision UK act James Newman forced to record back-up song amid Covid fears

Our Eurovision hopeful James Newman has filmed a performance of his song amid fears he will be forced to pull out due to coronavirus.

If the singer, 35, tests positive he will be banned from attending the arena in Rotterdam for Saturday’s final.

So he recorded his routine as a back-up so the UK will still be able to take part in the annual contest.

He told the Daily Star: "We have done a back-up video, which I filmed a month ago at the BBC.

"But I’ve been working so hard so I want to get on the stage and do it for real."

Eurovision was plunged into crisis earlier this week when reps for Poland and Iceland tested positive for coronavirus.

It means the teams from both countries had to pull out of the opening ceremony.

James, who will sing his track Embers, has odds of 125/1 of winning on Saturday.

The performer was initially entered to compete last year with his track My Last Breath and his pop star brother has been a constant source of support for him in preparation for the contest.

John Newman, one of the masterminds behind Rudimental’s Feel The Love, grew up with James in North Yorkshire.

He’s also written songs for artists like Calvin Harris, Panic! At The Disco and Jessie J.

"It’s great having a brother who’s a pop star," James told Daily Star.

"He knows what it’s like to be in the public eye – he’s sung in front of thousands and thousands of people.

"For him, it’d be a walk in the park getting on that [Eurovision] stage!" he laughed.

James continued: "He’s given me so much good advice. We’re best mates, we always support each other, so it’s been great being able to ring him up every night and ask him questions.

"He’s been so supportive, which is just so great to have."

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James, of course, is no stranger to penning hits. His own songwriting credits include bops like Little Mix’s Love Me Like You and Rudimental’s Lay It All On Me.

The last time the UK won the contest was in 1997.

The Eurovision Grand final is on Saturday at 8pm on BBC One

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