Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Daniela Nardi - Espresso Manifesto

What better way to escape a chilly day than a journey to sunny Italy. No need to book a flight - only one of fancy via Daniela Nardi's Espresso Manifesto experience at Glenn Gould Theatre. I need little excuse to indulge in bella Italia - I grew up around Italians and although at that time my friends were reluctant to identify with anything related to the old country and therefore their parents (it was the 70s) that certainly wasn't the case for me. I found Italian culture fascinating..not to mention delicious.

So for a little while last night I travelled to that wonderful country enveloped in the music of Paolo Conte, one of Italy's celebrated songwriters. Miss Nardi's elegance was complemented by a stellar band including her husband Ron Davis on piano, John Johnston on clarinet, Mike Downes on bass, Kevin Barrett on guitar, Larry on drums, Louis Simao on accordian and as a special treat - direct from Italy - the exquisite trumpet of Fabrizio Bosso.

Opening with a montage of Italian Canadian photos including Daniela herself the mood was set with the lively "Azzurro" and further eased into the Mediterannean with "Sotto le Stelle del Jazz" and a cool, sweet and refreshing "Gelato al Limon". The audience was entertained by a varied program including the raucous fun of "Come Di", putting me in mind of a Marx brothers movie  and the bluesy "Un Altra Vita" a speculation about the afterlife...

The gorgeous "Nina" featured the artistry of Fabrizio Bosso on a lovely and poignant tune and "Messico e Nuvole" a lively Latin treatment. The band got to strut their stuff on the rollicking "Pawpwalk" a composition of Ron Davis.

The concert wouldn't be complete with "Via Con Me" - Paolo Conte's big hit (and for me ever associated with the movie "French Kiss".

Nardi recorded the album in Italy with Italian musicians seeking to span the ocean between her Canadian and Italian roots. She describes Espresso as being the "ultimate symbol of all things Italian - dark, rich earthy, complex, yet effortless. elegan yet primal. Hot. I would add to that a marvelous jolt and a good way to get your heart racing....check out the CD if you're not in New York on December 8th - you can check her out at DROM on the Lower East Side...

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