With Paolo Conte Umbria Jazz hosts the Italian canzone d’autore of which the lawyer from Asti has been one of the most beloved and influential interpreters for more than fifty years.
Over the years, the festival has dedicated great attention to song and to its artists but has reserved a special space for Conte. Because jazz, for Paolo Conte, is an essential part of his musical story that began as a jazz pianist and vibraphonist. Because in many of his songs a culture, a mood (and a form) of jazz can be clearly heard. Because, above all, there is that unmistakable existential scent of jazz, that aftertaste of melancholy evocation that represents its most authentic and profound soul. And shall we also add that Paolo Conte wrote the sort of identity poster that recounts the variegated microcosm that stirs under the stars of jazz? What is certain is that Paolo Conte’s concerts have never betrayed the expectations of those who know that, with him, songs can become poetic sketches enclosed in a refined musical shell.
It is therefore no coincidence that the author of Azzurro is a fairly regular – and much loved – frequenter of the stages of Umbria Jazz. The last time was in 2015 with a concert dedicated to the Perugia promoter, Sergio Piazzoli, his personal friend and friend of all those who love good music.
Earlier still, in 2009, again at the Arena Santa Giuliana, a splendid evening took place thanks to a new interpretation with new orchestrations, of his most famous and most performed songs. In 2001, another concert, but this time with the main location of the festival at the Frontone Gardens and the times those of Razmataz, with the complex project in which the album was the soundtrack of a multimedia work that also included a series of drawings and sketches by Conte himself (which, for the occasion, were displayed in an exhibition inside the Rocca Paolina).
For his debut, however, we need to go back in time, to 1984, to a very particular situation, when Conte went onto the stage of Piazza IV Novembre with the Doctor Dixie Jazz Band and some very special soloists: Renzo Arbore, Pupi Avati and Henghel Gualdi (there should also have been Lucio Dalla, who withdrew at the last moment). Jazz performed by talented amateurs, in the sign of tradition.
On June 14 and 15, 2018 Conte celebrated with a great event the fifty years of Azzurro, his first song, which was then interpreted by Adriano Celentano who made it known in Italy and abroad.
The tours of Paolo Conte usually consist of just a few dates, but among these, in the 2019 tour, Perugia could not be left out. Naturally, together with him will be the trusted Orchestra which provides the best sound