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New Philly Italian Internet
Radio Program Honors Mario

Radio Voice Italia First Broadcast

By Sam Samuelian


Anna and I attended the very first live show of Radio Voice Italia last night (you will be able to hear it on in the future when the producer gets to archiving it and shows that will follow). This Internet show will take place every Wednesday evening from 7 to 10 PM eastern standard time and will feature Italians and their accomplishments. Mario Lanza will be featured singing every week! You can hear it live on the aforementioned site.

 The restaurant has great food and we took advantage of that--my pasta bolognese with veal, pork, and beef was top notch and plentiful! It also is a beautiful place and the broadcast comes from a smallish but very private room that once was a porch on the building. Joe is the producer and creator and Dee is the girl who did much of the announcing. We told him that we are big Lanza fans before the show and I gave him the excellent Rense CD "I'll See You In My Dreams". That pleased him and ultimately helped his show because he used great cuts from it. He also used at least SIX cuts (only excerpts thankfully) from "Lanza On Broadway" and that had the two of us wincing. This was a lapse in taste but he is not alone among those who like these recordings. So, I'm thankful he used what I gave him instead of more from LOB!

 The show started with information about their goals and later they listed who would be future guests. Their first Italian guest was comedian Gus Greco (who used to be half of a duo) and he was funny. He also did a nice segment analyzing derivative Italian names. For example, Verdi means green--so Giuseppe Verdi can be called Joe Green! I spoke up and offered Mario's real name of Cocozza. He knew it means squash!

 Mario was featured in a medley of well known songs and he sounded great coming from the high quality speakers we sat directly in front of. In the second hour complete songs were played and the guest was Charlie Gracie, an Italian well known for his big 1957 hit record "Butterfly" and his guitar skills. He looks great and still performs all the time. He and his wife are touring Europe soon. He expressed how he came from South Philly roots (along with others like Frankie Avalon and Bobby Rydell) and feels blessed to have been able to make a living from something he loves so much. Apparently, he has another hit record out fifty years later. I must go to Amazon to hear it!

 A nice feature around 9:00 was "Buzz from Italy" which brings interesting current news from the country. The last hour is devoted to modern Italian music which to our ears sounded reminiscent of disco. We left by 9:15 since this music is not our cup of tea and we wanted the evening to end on a high note. During the dance music (it might be an idea for them to have dance space since that could attract young people) we had a nice time discussing the show and making suggestions. We plan to return as much as possible. One future musician we will enjoy seeing is Mike Pedicin Jr. and his father since we know them but haven't seen them for many years. I also gave him some "leads" for potential future guest which included Gracie contemporary Nicky DeMatteo and none other than our Frank Tenaglia! Bill Ronayne is going to be a guest on January 23rd and will certainly be a valuable guest with his great knowledge of Mario. Producer Joe plans to feature more about Mario in addition to his music in future shows and Bill will be a good step in that direction. Tune in next week on your computer and enjoy. It's not often anymore that we see such tributes to Mario and this is not a one time thing!





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