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MUSINGS OF A MEANDERING MIND #24 (article first published : 2006-11-5)

There have been a Batch of Beaus such as Bublé and others who’ve had tremendous success by not only coming up with new hits but also incorporating into their repertoires some of the old standards, and they’ve been compared most favourably to the likes of Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Junior and others of the same ilk. (Even wicked old – well, he’s still fairly young but you know what I mean – Robbie Williams did a GRAND job with his Swing While You’re Winning album not that long ago, and his live performance at the Royal Albert Hall was simply superb!)

The latest of these popular kind of performers to emerge on the music scene is a REAL youngster, 18-year-old Peter Grant, and I’ll be doing a little research on him fairly soon, as his debut album is right up my street. So watch out for comment on what he terms New Vintage, to follow fairly shortly.

But right now I’d like to make mention of another ITALIAN singer, this time the popular crooner named Patrizio Buanne, soon to make a second visit to SA, with Durban listed as one of his ports of call to perform towards the end of this year. Tall, dark and handsome, perfectly groomed and impeccably dressed, this performer brings back old-school cool into our modern-day consumer culture; a clean-cut image combined with a rich baritone voice that he says is inspired by the singers of yesteryear.

His debut album, recorded with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra at Abbey Road Studios, delivered a sophisticated mix of numbers instantly conjuring up images of the classic American and Italian singers of the 1950s and 60s, the sound remarkably fresh in his delivery of timeless classics, where the listener is immersed in the soundtrack of a world familiar from film and television – from Federico Fellini, Sophia Loren and Gina Lollobrigida to THE GODFATHER, GOODFELLAS and THE SOPRANOS.

My personal favourite from Patrizio Buanne – The Italian just HAS to be Track No. 8, Home to Mamma, where the words so familiar from the tune of Funiculi Funicula have been altered to amuse the listener as Patrizio travels the world to find the RIGHT girl to marry and, being spoiled for choice by so many wonderful ladies in all the countries he visits, declares he will have to “Take them home to Mamma and let her decide for me!”

But now there’s a second album by this popular crooner already released in SA titled Forever Begins Tonight, which is once again a magical mixture of Italian and English, including a couple of excellent covers of Elvis Presley songs and, if I’m not mistaken, one or two previously recorded by Cilla Black which also did well on the Hit Parades of yesteryear.

Patrizio has himself co-written some of the numbers on this second album - and Track No. 1 (from which the album’s title is taken) is sure to be a winner with all young lovers! I would hazard a guess that, with enough air-play, it may well become a hit – in this country as well as many others.

However, I think my favourite on this particular CD is the final, very Italian, very cheerful track, titledBella Bella Signorina, a super up-tempo number which was a PERFECT choice to end with, in my humble opinion.

Well done, Patrizio: can’t WAIT for you to hit our shores in person once more! Caught him on SABC3’s Three Talk as well as Top Billing on his last visit to SA - and, wow, the man is one helluva charmer! AND it seems perfectly genuine! He quite obviously very much impressed the beautiful, charismatic and similarly charming Portuguese lass who interviewed him on the latter and who goes by the moniker of Jeannie D, a recent contestant on SABC2’s Strictly Come Dancing (sadly knocked out after an excellent running – quite a feat for an amateur ballroom dancer) but who’s also a talented presenter on television and as well as, I believe, on Good Hope in the Cape, though I’ve not had the pleasure of hearing her in her radio persona, living as I do in KwaZulu-Natal.

I’m looking forward to being in the audience at Sun Coast Casino on November 11 as a kindly soul from East Coast Radio has recently arranged for me to join the staff of that station (under cover, fortunately, since rain may possibly drench those in the open air at that time of year) in the company of my daughter, who is just as great a fan of Patrizio’s as I am, even though there’s a 27 year age gap between us – so that goes to show the man’s broad appeal across all generations. And there are other musical delights on the bill for that evening, among them Will Young, he who won the first-ever (British) series of Idols, whose voice I also admire and enjoy greatly. So that’s certainly an occasion to look forward to with great anticipation! - Bev Pulé




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