the beginning of Arbore's love for Jazz in general, and for
the clarinet in particular, we need to go back to the time
when he moved from Foggia, his birth city, to Naples, where
he spent much time in the American district. The USO (United
States Organization) club in Calata San Marco recognized his
enthusiasm and talent and allowed him to perform for the NATO
soldiers. His great passion is music and, despite many other
interests and a long, varied, and prolific career, Renzo Arbore
still defines himself as simply a jazz clarinet player.
debut as singer and clarinet player came with the theme song
for the television program "Telepatria International"
(see TV page), the sarcastic "Smorza 'e lights"
(Dim the Lights), which became a constant in his ensuing live
performances. After selling more than 800,000 copies of "Ma
la notte" ("But the Night", famous theme song
for the TV program of the same name) and 500,000 of the "Meglio
dal vivo che dal morto" album ("Better Live than
from the Dead"), Arbore published "Il Clarinetto"
("The Clarinet") in 1986 as part of his second record
as singer and songwriter, "Prima che sia troppo tardi"
("Before It's Too Late"), the first record was "Ora
o mai piú, ovvero cantautore da grande," ("Now
or Never, That Is Outstanding Singer/Songwriter") his
debut album in 1981. "Il Clarinetto" is a goliardic
song with many witty puns and layers of meaning, and it climaxes
with two clarinet solos by Renzo himself. He performed this
song at the Sanremo Festival, lightening the mood of that
singing competition. He was rewarded with a second place,
behind Eros Ramazotti, the phenomenon of that year. This was
the beginning of a long tour of concerts and performances,
accompanied by the "Barilla Boogie Band", with whom
he records the album "Viaggiare, oh, oh" ("To
Travel, Oh, Oh").
began the challenge of bringing quality music to television
and "D.O.C." was born. This was a daily, live show
with Gegé Telesfore, Monica Nannini, and guests, which
evolved into a prime time show emulating a nightclub, with
jazz, soul, and other quality music.
all the television successes, the international musical career
took off as well. In 1991 Arbore founds The ORCHESTRA
ITALIANA, composed of fifteen famous musicians, intended
to popularize Neapolitan traditional songs, bringing back
into the spotlight the forgotten mandolin.
Arbore is also the president of Umbria Jazz.
In 2002 Arbore starts another band, "Renzo Arbore and
the Swing Maniacs." The first record produced, "Tonite!
Renzo Swing" goes platinum. At the same time he continues
to perform with The Italian Orchestra as well, alternating
between the two bands.