This has been due for some time: here’s the second part of my Italian music recs! The disclaimer stays the same: I’m pretty ignorant when it comes to contemporary Italian music (so I’ve also added artists I don’t personally listen to). Hope you’ll enjoy it!
PS: If you can’t find someone that I can’t possibly have forgotten (say, Mina), they’re probably in part 1. Should it not be the case, feel free to tell me!
- Elio e le Storie Tese – comedy/progressive rock. Great music and wacky lyrics. Actual legends. Listen to La terra dei cachi [x], Cara ti amo [x] and Il vitello dai piedi di balsa [x].
- Lucio Battisti – pop, soft rock. Had his big breakout in the Seventies. You’ll have a hard time finding an Italian that does not know at least one of his songs. Start with La canzone del Sole [x] (universally remembered as the first song in the repertoire of those learning how to play the guitar), Emozioni [x] and I giardini di marzo [x].
- Giorgia – technically speaking, one of the greatest female voices we have. Pop, influenced by jazz and soul. Try Di Sole e d’azzurro [x], Gocce di memoria [x] and Come saprei [x].
- Antonello Venditti – forever linked to the city of Rome (and particularly one of its football teams). Started out in the Seventies with De Gregori, another famous Roman songwriter (who was featured in part 1). Listen to Roma capoccia [x], Lilly [x] and Notte prima degli esami [x].
- Levante – thanks to anyone who suggested I’d check her music out, I actually live on Mars and had never heard about her. Indie pop/rock. I like Non me ne frega niente [x], Pezzo di me [x] and Le lacrime non macchiano [x].
- 883 – since you guys nearly killed me for not including them
anche se insisto che gli anni io ce l’avevo messa, the not-so-guilty pleasure of every true 80′s/90′s kid, who created masterpieces like La regola dell’amico [x], Hanno ucciso l’uomo ragno [x] and Nord Sud Ovest Est [x].
- Ligabue – mostly rock. One of my best friends’ favorites. Listen to Certe notti [x], Una vita da mediano [x] and Ho messo via [x].
- Vinicio Capossela – world music, kinda. Cool lyrics with many references. Listen to Che coss’è l’amor [x], Il ballo di san Vito [x] and Scivola vai via [x].
- Marco Mengoni – pop-rock, pop. Found fame with X Factor. Check out Guerriero [x], L’essenziale [x] and Ti ho voluto bene veramente [x].
- Edoardo Bennato – left many a generation dreaming with his evocative pictures straight out of fairytales (namely, Pinocchio and Peter Pan). Listen to L’isola che non c’è [x], Il gatto e la volpe [x] and Sono solo canzonette [x].
- Carmen Consoli – rock, folk, alternative pop. A singer-songwriter with a distinctive voice and haunting lyrics. L’ultimo bacio [x], Parole di burro [x] and Amore di plastica [x] are definitely worth mentioning.
- Luigi Tenco – wonderful songwriter, sadly immortalized by his suicide, which he committed in 1967 after his song was excluded from the Sanremo festival. The song in question is Ciao amore, ciao [x]; I’d also recommend Vedrai, vedrai [x] and Mi sono innamorato di te [x].
- Franco Battiato – an icon that hardly finds a place under a specific genre (generally, progressive pop/new wave). In keeping with a honored Italian tradition, cryptic lyrics everywhere! Check out Centro di gravità permanente [x], Cuccuruccucu [x] and Alexander Platz [x].
- Motta – indie rock. Listen to Del tempo che passa la felicità [x], Sei bella davvero [x] and La fine dei vent’anni [x].
- TheGiornalisti – indie-pop group. Riccione [x], Completamente [x] and Il tuo maglione mio [x].
- I cani – I think being from Rome or not might play a part in how much you can like their lyrics and relate to them. They were pretty big when I was in high school. Indie-rock. Listen to Le coppie [x], Hipsteria [x] and Lexotan [x].
- Frankie Hi-Nrg Mc – rapper and songwriter, active since the early Nineties. Great lyricist, often confronting social or political themes. Have a look at Quelli che benpensano [x], Pugni in tasca [x] (this is ft. Paola Cortellesi, Italian comedian who’s also a great singer) and Autodafè [x].
Regà lo so che ne mancano tanti ma c’abbiamo un sacco di musica, mi sono impegnata, chi vuole aggiunga