The deep voice of Mario Biondi

Mario Biondi at Live Vision Studios

A couple of weeks ago I was looking at my work calendar and I read on the 14th of May these words: “Mario Biondi interview”. I immediately asked my boss if he was the famous Italian (I am also Italian) soul-jazz singer and, when my boss answered “Yes” , I was really surprised and excited!

Maybe a lot of people still don’t know him and I didn’t know a lot about him too. So, I have started searching more information about him and I have realized that he is a great singer who is becoming very famous all over the world because of his amazing voice.

Mario Biondi was born in Catania, Sicily, and his original name is Mario Ranno. He took his stage name from his father, the singer Stefano Biondi. Since he was a teenager, he loved soul-jazz music and he studied English language in order to get closer to the international soul-jazz stage.

After he sang in several small choirs, at the end of 80’s he started performing at the concerts of international artists, like Ray Charles. However, the turning point was with the song “This is what you are”, his most famous song, which was released even in Japan. From this moment his career started growing very quickly and in 2006 Schema Records published Mario’s first album: “Handful of Soul”, which won four platinum records just in a few months.

In 2009 he released the second album “If” and for this album he collaborated with the strings of the London Telefilmonic Orchestra and other affirmed international musicians.

After several tours and important collaborations, this year the new album “Sun” (produced by Biondi and Bluey, leader of the British jazz band Incognito, and distributed by Sony Music) was released and on the 10th of May, Biondi gave a concert at the Royal Albert Hall for the world premiere of it.

Mario Biondi’s main quality, that makes him a natural talent, is his voice. When you hear his voice, you can recognise it. It is warm, deep and strong. Through his voice you can feel the warmth of his country, Italy, mixed with the traditional and international soul-jazz sound.

During the interview I have also realized that he is also a humble and easy going person. He told us a funny anecdote about him. When he was younger, he wanted to be a dentist. During his traineeship he used to sing all the time and at the end, tired of his constant singing, his colleagues suggested, or maybe pushed him, to start his career as a singer. And from that moment he has dedicated his life to music.

Moreover, even if Biondi sings in English and he is always around the world, he has never forgotten his country of origin, that he loves. He declared that his main aim is to bring the soul-jazz music into the Italian people’s soul, but also bring the Italian culture into the world.

It was a pleasure to meet an artist like Mario Biondi, who wants to spread not only his amazing voice, but also his culture and his strong passion for the soul-jazz music.

He is developing a lot of new projects and collaborations with international and Italian artists and I can’t wait to listen appreciate to his next works. I wish him good luck for his career and I hope people from all over the world will his great talent.

Music Video: Once In A Lifetime

Music Videos: One on my favourites..

Once a music video was a promotional tool, it began as a popular promotion of music. During the ‘80s and especially by the upswing of MTV it became a television phenomenon. The music video mixed with fine arts and new technologies, so new trends ascended.

One of my favourite music videos is Once In A Lifetime from the Talking Heads from 1980. In this music video singer David Burne is dancing like a marionette by flinging his arms, tapping his head and patting the floor, as we all know from the Puppet Theatre. Talking Heads have never been commercially successful until the music video of Once In A Lifetime came out. It has become one of the most popular clips in MTV history and according to Time. Entertainment it is the ‘All Time Best Music Video’.

This music video is a good example of how the combination of music promotion and the fine arts can increase the success of a band. The popularity of this song is owing to David Burne’s creative and innovative mind and the music video production. By the emergence of MTV the experience of music changed. The music video became an essential element of the appreciation of music. Therefore the clip is an elementary medium for experiencing music. The video of Once In A Lifetime challenged the distinction between commercial goals and video art and helped the band to gain popularity and prevalence.

Frueher dienten Musikvideos hauptsaechlich der Vermarktung von Musik. Durch die Entstehung von Musiksendern wie unter anderem MTV wurde das Musikvideo zu einem beliebten Fernseh-Phenomen. Die Videoclips entwickelten sich weiter, sie kombinierten die bildende Kunst mit neuen Technologien und neue Trends entstanden.

Eines meiner Lieblingsvideo’s ist der Clip Once In A Lifetime von den Talking Heads aus 1980. In dem Musikclip tanzt Saenger David Burne wie eine Marionette. Er schleudert seine Arme in die Luft, klopft auf seinen Kopf und taetschelt mit den Haenden den Boden, wie man es unter anderem vom Kasperletheater kennt. Die Band Talking Heads war bis zur Entstehung des Musikvideo’s Once in a Lifetime nicht sehr erfolgreich, heutzutage wird der Clip jedoch gesehen als eines der beliebtesten Musikvideos der MTV Geschichte. Die Time. Entertainment ernannte es sogar zum ‘All Time Best Music Video’.

Der Videoclip der Talking Heads ist ein gutes Beispiel dafuer wie die Kombination aus bildender Kunst und Vermarktung zum Erfolg einer Band beitragen kann. Durch die Kreativitaet und die Innovatitaet des Saengers und durch die Musikproduktion gewann der Song an enormer Beliebtheit. Durch der Erfindung von MTV veraenderte der Musikgeschmack und das Musikvideo wurde zu einem wichtigen Element der Musikbewertung. Das Musikvideo ‘Once In A Lifetime’ von den Talking Heads kombiniert Videokunst und mit kommerziellen Zielen und verhilft der Band zu Popularitaet und Praevalenz.

Dubstep Deptford

Dubstep sensation James Blake shoots “The Wilhelm Scream” at Live Vision

James Blake in the Studio - Wilhelm Scream
James singin his track on the green screen stage

We had a musical treat yesterday as hot dubstep talent, James Blake filmed his latest music video for the track “The Wilhelm Scream” here at  Live Vision. Directed by Alexander Brown for Davey Inc and released by Polydor Records.

The entire this was shot on RED ONE, on green screen. It was an unusually calm shoot day, mostly because it was such a minimalistic video. The atmosphere of the final product was evident in the studio, even whilst filming.





james blake behind the scenes - music video shoot
"Tubby" pulls focus on a key shot for the music video

Unfortunately, apart from working with the crew on the lighting set-up in the morning, I was stuck in the office most of the time. It was a pleasure, though to hear the music coming from the studio – I think I’ll be humming that tune for a while to come! …buh ba duh ba da duh dreams…








Dubstep sensation James Blake filme “The Wilhelm Scream” à Live Vision

James Blake in the Studio - Wilhelm Scream
James singin his track on the green screen stage

Nous avons eu un plaisir musical hier quand nouveau talent de dubstep, James Blake, a filmé le dernier clip pour sa chanson “The Wilhelm Scream” ici à Live Vision. Réalisé par Alexander Brown pour Davey Inc et publié par Polydor Records.

L’ensemble a été filmé avec RED ONE sur écran vert. C’était une journée de tournage exceptionnellement calme, surtout parce que c’était une vidéo minimaliste. L’atmosphère du produit final était évidente dans le studio avant même d’avoir fini le tournage.





james blake behind the scenes - music video shoot
"Tubby" pulls focus on a key shot for the music video

Malheureusement, en dehors d’avoir travaillé avec l’équipage du système d’éclairage le matin, je suis resté coincé dans le bureau la plupart du temps. Malgré cela, ce fut un plaisir écouter la musique provenant du studio –je pense que je vais fredonner cette chanson pendant un certain temps à venir!