Italian Guitars

Time Records Series 2000 (S2023) features Al Caiola & His Orchestra hammering through 12 Italian-based, Space Age Pop, guitar-focused tracks. Torna A Surriento, Nights of Splendor, and Arrivedirci Roma are a few of the key standouts, but overall, Italian Guitars is a perfect, half-thought, lazy day groove record. It’s a Series 2000 record, so you’re know you’re getting quality sound. Pour yourself a hefty glass of Montepulciano and enjoy!

The One and Only Nicola Paone

Paone CoverProduced by Creed Taylor for ABC-Paramount Records, Down at Paone’s Place features the restaurateur and entertaining crooner, Nicola Paone playfully performing Italian-inspired, upbeat folk tunes for a vivacious atmosphere of classic, early 60s music in the vein of the popular, Volare. Paone’s voice is slick, smooth, and at times laugh-out-loud silly. His execution is considerably impressive knowing he turned down several singing gigs in order to maintain his restaurant at 207 East 34th St. in New York City, which was in full operation until its inevitable closing in 2008.

Paone BackIf you’re craving a little spice with your Tortellini Al Bosco, look no further than Down at Paone’s Place. I’ve personally never had the pleasure of a Nicola Paone specialty dish, but enjoying this prized album with homemade Lemon Butter Linguini is the next best thing. Mangia bene, vivi felice!

The World’s First Stereo Scored Orchestra

Hits Cover101 Strings, not unlike Dalmatians, is a wondrous sight to behold. Apart from being a monumental mass of “the finest musicians in Europe today” (circa: 1961), the wistful beauty discharged from these prominent performers is seductively pleasing to both the visual, as well as the hearing senses. Coupled with (The Wondrous World of) Stereo Fidelity, a US based subsidiary of Somerset Records, these 10 Italian hits that make up, well, Italian Hits, emerge from the stereo with a protuberant level of piercing and erotic joy, that is seemingly unheard of today, let alone in 1961.

Hits BackTouching upon such Italian classics as Volare, Cha-Cha Italiano, La Dolce Vita, and Ciao Ciao Bambino (which translates into “Hello Hello Baby”), Italian Hits, as far as I can tell, does a satisfactory job of representing exactly what the back cover boasts: The Biggest Popular Hit Songs from Italy in the Past Ten Years. A “Pop” Program in the Sound of Magnificence.

I’ve never been to Italy, but thanks to 101 Strings and the four, straw-sucking minxes on the cover, I feel as though Italy is as close as a car jam on the 405.Stereo Fidelity_smaller