courtesy of kramden at SFRP-CJW
This album is great fun. I mean…just look at this guy, for starters – and he can write, play, sing and arrange with amazing beauty and intensity. The introduction on Mimmo’s website says it best :
Mimmo Epifani is considered by critics to be internationally one of the best musicians and authorities on ethnic music due to his technical innovations in improvisation with his instrument, the mandolin, as well as his “barber” technique for the mandola.
It’s called the “barber” technique because it was taught in a barber shop in San Vito dei Normanni near Brindisi by the Maestro Costantino Vita, a barber and musician, and by the Maestro Peppu D’Augusta, a sort of director of small orchestras which played “pizzica-pizzica”, a therapeutic dance from the Salento area, also called the "Dance of San Vito".
The formation of the “pizzica-pizzica” orchestras was made up of four or five musicians playing instruments such as the violin, the 'battente' guitar, the mandola or the mandolin, the French guitar and the 'a cornice' drums.
Right in Maestro Costantino’s barber shop is where a very young Mimmo Epifani began learning to play and soon discovered a passion for the oral folk tradition. After graduating with top grades in the mandolin from the Padua Conservatory, he started working with the great masters of Italian folk music: Antonio Infantino and Caterina Bueno. At Prato he met Maestro De Simone and his Media Etas company and came to know him well; he was invited to go to Naples to participate as a concert musician in some of the company’s theatrical works. Eugenio Bennato discovered him as a rap singer and barber mandola soloist, and with his help he began working with the Musicanova group, where he reached his maximum artistic potential and was able to participate in concerts worldwide.
As the founder of “The Epifani Barbers”, he continues to give numerous concerts in hopes of making his instruments known in a modern context, presenting, besides his own pieces, the traditional music learned in the barbers shops of his hometown.
The Epifani Barbers’ concerts are centered on Mediterranean music, from its origins to the present day, presented by both instrumental and vocalist vituosos. The rhythms of the folk music favour direct involvement and the “participation of listening” in a sort of happening in which the music and the poetic lyrics are the starting point for an apparently free improvisation which in reality is based on precise stylistic and aesthetic rules.
The characteristic instruments of folk culture such as the mandola, the 'battente' guitar and the 'tammorra' contribute to the creation of a sound which is both modern and syncopated, nearer to certain points of rock music than to worn stereotypes of an affected folk revival.
Mimmo Epifani – mandola, mandoloncello, mandoline, voce
Geppino Laudanna – fisarmonica e tastiere
Joe de Marco – basso
Massimo Cusato – percussioni
Manuele Loffredo – voce e cori
Franco Castiglia – voce e cori
Marian Serban – cymbalon
Angelo Gaccione – cori
03. Ci criti on non ci criti
06. Suspiri tua
07. Lu re
11. Mirannui – radio edit
Mediterraneo / Forrest Hill, 2004
320 kbps CBR