If Love Was a Crime

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"If Love Was a Crime"
The artwork portrays Genova posing in front of a white backdrop.
Single by Poli Genova
Released21 March 2016 (2016-03-21)
Songwriter(s)Composers: Borislav Milanov, Sebastian Arman, Joacim Persson, Johnny K. Palmer

Lyricists: Borislav Milanov, Sebastian Arman, Joacim Persson, Poli Genova
Poli Genova singles chronology
"Щом си с мен"
"If Love Was a Crime"
Eurovision Song Contest 2016 entry
  • Borislav Milanov
  • Sebastian Arman
  • Joachim Persson
  • Johnny K. Palmer
  • Borislav Milanov
  • Sebastian Arman
  • Joachim Persson
  • Poli Genova
Finals performance
Semi-final result
Semi-final points
Final result
Final points
Entry chronology
◄ "Samo shampioni" (2013)
"Beautiful Mess" (2017) ►

"If Love Was a Crime" is a song recorded by Bulgarian recording artist Poli Genova. Written by Borislav Milanov, Sebastian Arman, Joacim Bo Persson, Johnny K. Palmer and Genova, the track represented Bulgaria in the Eurovision Song Contest 2016. As a result, it came in fourth place in the final, with it becoming the highest placing in the contest for Bulgaria. An accompanying music video for "If Love Was a Crime" was released on 21 March 2016, followed by the launching of the single on 30 March 2016 through the Bulgarian National Television (BNT) and Universal. Upon its appearance in the contest, the recording charted at number 200 on the UK Singles Chart and peaked within the top eighty in Austria, Belgium, Scotland and Sweden.

Despite its success, the song was removed from digital music platforms after its initial distribution deal with Universal expired.[1] A campaign by the Pop Activism website saw a new deal struck between the rights holders BNT and distributor Universal in April 2018[2] with the song returning to digital music platforms.

Eurovision Song Contest[edit]

On 19 February 2016, BNT announced that the broadcaster's managing board had internally selected Poli Genova to represent Bulgaria at the Eurovision Song Contest 2016.[3] The song "If Love Was a Crime" was also internally selected for Genova and was presented to the public on 21 March 2016 through the release of the official music video via the official Eurovision Song Contest website eurovision.tv.[4][5] Genova performed the song during Eurovision Song Contest 2016 second semi-final on 12 May 2016, held at the Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden, and qualified for the final as one of the ten countries which received the highest number of points.[6][7] In the final, on 14 May 2016, after the results came through, "If Love Was a Crime" finished the contest in 4th place with 307 points.[8] It was then Bulgaria's highest scoring entry at Eurovision; it was also the first participation for Bulgaria on the final since 2007.[9]

Track listing[edit]

Digital download[10]
1."If Love Was a Crime"2:59

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
Europe 30 March 2016[10] Digital download BNT, Universal Music

Chart performance[edit]

The track has been streamed over four million times through Spotify.[11][12] Since its release, the official video has been watched almost 15 million times.[13]

Chart (2016) Peak
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[14] 72
Belgium (Ultratip Bubbling Under Flanders)[15] 32
France (SNEP)[16] 129
Scotland (OCC)[17] 73
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[18] 47
UK Singles Downloads (OCC)[19] 74
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[20] 200

Other versions[edit]

"If Love Was a Crime" has also been performed by Greek singer Demy in Greek under the title "Isovia Mazi" (Ισόβια Μαζί", meaning "Life Ιmprisonment Together").


  1. ^ Pop Activism [@Pop_Activism] (10 April 2018). "Sadly Poli Genova's #Eurovision hit If Love Was A Crime is no longer on Spotify etc as the year long deal to distribute it through Universal expired and was not extended by the rights holder @BNT_1 We'd love @bg_eurovision and @JoanaLevievaSaw to get it back online. Please! >>>" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  2. ^ Pop Activism [@Pop_Activism] (25 April 2018). "POP ACTIVISM ALERT!!We've managed to get Poli Genova's 2016 #Eurovision hit If Love Was A Crime back on Spotify etc after some kind words with rightsholders @BNT_1 Spread the word!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  3. ^ Brey, Marco (19 February 2016). "Bulgaria: Poli Genova returns to Eurovision". eurovision.tv. European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  4. ^ "Вътрешна селекция 2016". bnt.bg (in Bulgarian). BNT. 18 February 2016. Archived from the original on 25 February 2016. Retrieved 19 February 2016.
  5. ^ Brey, Marco (21 March 2016). "Bulgaria: Premiere of "If Love Was A Crime"". eurovision.tv. European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 21 March 2016.
  6. ^ Jordan, Paul (25 January 2016). "Allocation Draw: The results!". eurovision.tv. European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 25 January 2016.
  7. ^ "10 more finalists through to the Grand Final". European Broadcasting Union. 12 May 2016. Retrieved 8 March 2022.
  8. ^ "Grand Final of Stockholm 2016". European Broadcasting Union. Archived from the original on 8 May 2021. Retrieved 8 March 2022.
  9. ^ "Countries - Bulgaria". European Broadcasting Union. Retrieved 8 March 2022.
  10. ^ a b "If Love Was a Crime (Eurovision 2016 - Bulgaria) - Single by Poli Genova on iTunes". iTunes. 30 March 2016. Retrieved 30 March 2016.
  11. ^ "Eurovision Tracker". Esctracker.com. Retrieved 3 April 2022.
  12. ^ "Eurovision 2016 stars dominate iTunes charts". Eurovision 2016 Predictions, Polls, Odds, Rankings - wiwibloggs. 16 May 2016.
  13. ^ Poli Genova - If Love Was A Crime (Bulgaria) 2016 Eurovision Song Contest. 21 March 2016 – via YouTube.
  14. ^ "Poli Genova – If Love Was a Crime" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 25 May 2016.
  15. ^ "Poli Genova – If Love Was a Crime" (in Dutch). Ultratip. Retrieved 4 June 2016.
  16. ^ "Poli Genova – If Love Was a Crime" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  17. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 20 May 2016.
  18. ^ "Poli Genova – If Love Was a Crime". Singles Top 100. Retrieved 20 May 2016.
  19. ^ "Official Singles Downloads Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  20. ^ "UK Log UK" (TXT). Zobbel.de. Retrieved 3 April 2022.