Italian Hours

by pieces of moments

Everyone needs at least one “swap buddy.” I met my friend Aleksey (Alex) during my undergrad years. He’s a brilliant economist with a delightfully sharp sense of humor and is now all official with a PhD and a position as a professor in Turin, Italy. [Side note: I did ask him if he could fix the economy and his answer was short: “not this year”…so hang in there kiddos] We chat frequently over the internet and during the course of our conversations he tells me all kinds of lovely or intriguing news about what’s shakin’ in Turin (no good brunch places, apparently**). He’s got impeccable taste, which extends to his very well versed music knowledge and collection.  Thus, he’s a great swap buddy, as in swapping information about cool things you want to know about, or good music.

So we were chatting recently and he told me that he’s been buried under a “tsunami of Italian pop music.” For whatever reason Italian pop music is one brand of pop around the world that I have no real association with whatsoever. So, he kindly supplied me with a website and we proceeded to listen to Italian pop music via the internet together for a bit, or “sharing l’amore della musica italiana” as he put it.

What Alex pointed out to me is the phrasing: in many examples the phrasing isn’t snappy and choppy like most pop music (drives me crazy how so many people lack breath control these days), but rather long, languid, lines akin to that of an aria. Which, would be logical given all the amazing opera Italy has bestowed upon the earth for hundreds of years.  Also, the singers tend to be of a wider age range as opposed to here in the States where it’s about young, younger, and youngest. Also, also…it’s just downright catchy. You can’t listen to just one song, kinda like you can’t eat just one square of these things.

One of the people that popped up on Radio Torino was Max Gazzo. He kinda reminds me a bit of Serge Gainsbourgh, but with more of a Captain Hook look about him (impromptu compare/contrast! GazzoHook … no?). I keep listening to this. Hmm. Guess the tsunami has officially hit this side of the ocean.

**the subject of brunch was brought up because of my informing him of a new amazing place in NYC called Permanent Brunch. If you like brunch, just look at the menu (well, grab a tissue for your drool and then check out the menu).