2021 – Lost Tapes Vol. 6 - Luciano Zotti (Angapp Music – It)

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General Details

Title: Lost Tapes Vol. 6 Luciano Zotti
Groups: various
Years: 1957/2021 © 2021
Graphic: Giulio Lekklub
Discover, digitalization, sound track selection, editing: Livio Minafra
Mastering and restoration sound engineer: Fonorama, Angelo Pantaleo, Massimo Stano, Gianluca Caterina
Label: Angapp Music – It
Produced by: Livio Minafra
Financed by: Pino Minafra


The war had just ended and Luciano, with his sister Lucia, barely teenagers, cheered the upper class of Bari with sketches and songs. Luciano used to play accordion and piano and Lucia used to sing. The quite known musician of Bari, Dino Blasi, at that time very young, often joined them playing the guitar. Luciano was born in Bari on 7 January 1934 and he had an eclectic personality: Jazz player, arranger, composer, bandleader, poet, and painter. He graduated in piano with Nino Rota on 12 September 1953 at the Bari Conservatory and he studied composition as well. His first composition dates back to 1957. Soon later, many other works followed. The Carlo Salvati Company recorded them and made them come to us. In 1960 he put on his first band “I 5 del Sud”. These two events made him known in the national musical environment, and after a while, his life changed radically moving to Milan. At the beginning, he started to collaborate with “Le Edizioni Musicali Club”, where he played permanently with the main representatives of the jazz scene in Milan: from Oscar Valdambrini to Glauco Masetti, from Eraldo Volontè to Gianni Basso and Gianni Bedori “Johnny Sax”. In 1964 he met Carlo Alberto Rossi, the man who “put the tuxedo on the Italian song”, the composer of “E se domani”, “Amore baciami”, “Mille bolle  blu”, “‘Na voce ‘na chitarra”… For about ten years, Maestro Zotti was the Artistic Director of Fonorama Rossi’s record label, as arranger, conductor, soloist and composer. He participated at several Sanremo Festivals as arranger and conductor. He collaborated with big names including, among them, Mina, Mia Martini and Sara Vaughan. At the Fonorama we find him in hundreds of recording sessions with prestigious friends such as the composer and arranger Enzo Ceragioli the “Italian Duke Ellington”, as well as Valdambrini, Basso… and of course several famous singers of the time. Luciano’s life was an incredible rise followed by a slow, inexorable descent. His sensitivity and shyness, combined with his talent, gave way to alcohol as a refuge in dealing with important bands and responsibilities. In 1974, he moved to Australia with his family. Bad choice. Music and composition would never leave him, but nothing was the same as before. Luciano said: “A sound, although abstract, is an element that is more prominent than ever concerning humanity, so much so that it touches the concrete. It manifests itself through the bodies vibration stimulated to movement, by human beings or by natural elements: the wind, for example. Human beings have learned to control this phenomenon since the earliest times of prehistory: from this control, stimulated by the human being’s need to express their emotions, music was born”. In 1990, Carlo Alberto Rossi and Luciano Zotti had the opportunity to collaborate once again, although briefly: «Dear Luciano, you do not imagine how happy I am to have, Destiny, made our professional paths intertwined again. When you left the Fonorama you left a big hole that was never filled… Your musical preparation and innate talent are qualities that I have rarely found in other collaborators” Luciano Zotti died in Sydney on January 5, 1998 at the age of 64.


A selection of his compositions, for the first time together. Indeed, this CD mostly collects the treasures recorded at the Fonorama with Carlo Alberto Rossi. We would like to thank his son Giorgio for the kind concession. It is a journey in the best quality pop music of the time, with elements of fine and wise jazz, a never obvious, deep, symphonic music. We find Luciano on the piano and melodica and appreciate him as a fine rhythm-symphonic orchestra arranger, as well as a composer of songs, and then we appreciate him for his love for children, as demonstrated by “Il Semaforo” at the 1968 Zecchino d’Oro / Rai. Finally, two goodies: his voice “caught” from a selection of some radio broadcasts he held in Australia in the 1980s and a nice theme song from La Caravella / Rai in 1972, recovered by Riccardo Tritto.


Luciano Zotti is one of the fathers of jazz in Bari beside Bruno Giannini, Dino Blasi’s music arrangement teacher. I therefore asked the best interpreters of jazz in Bari to “adopt one of his songs”, to get to know and play Luciano Zotti. Few of them had in fact just heard of him, except after having interpreted his music, to feel him as a father. Enchantment. Timelessness. Roots. Past and present coming together. Memory. Musical compositions from 1957 to 1998. A dense writing, from the stride organ of “Freddo” interpreted by Carlo Maria Barile to the cool of most of the songs such as “Ice Ball” chosen by the Vito Di Modugno Ensemble (with, among them, the great Pino Di Modugno, born in 1934). Then, “Bizzarre” performed by Bruno Montrone 4tet; “Teorema” entrusted to the Nico Marziliano trio. From the “Guiros” mambo faced by accordionist Vince Abbracciante, to the impressionist “Marimba” mambo reinvented by myself. From the Morriconian echoes of “Saratoga” interpreted by Guido Di Leone Trio to the Mingusian “Fire” led by Gino Palmisano and strengthened by Maurizio Quintavalle on double bass. From the Gaslinian “Divagazioni” identified by the Vito Liturri trio to the sinuous “The world goes around” sung by Gianna Montecalvo, to finish with the “Cha cha cha Sentimentale” revisited by the pianist Mirko Signorile. Not to mention the very intense “Jazbo”, which could mean, boh, where is jazz? Written as soon as he emigrated to Australia in ’74, and the touching “Samba’s Gold”, written when about to die in ’98, a musical testament of the Zotti’s poetics. Each artist invited to play Zotti’s artistic works, interpreted them with their own touch and sensitivity. Luciano Zotti today. A caress for an artist, no longer forgotten, from now on. It is also nice to consider Zotti’s frequentations. Just think of Mike Rubini’s first Solo, written by Glauco Masetti, as well as the special in “Stile”, interpreted by Di Leone and Rubini, originally written by Eraldo Volonté as a solo for tenor sax. It is also nice to find together in a definitive embrace, his son Alfredo Zotti, now 64, with his band from Australia playing “Logaritmo”; his aunt Lucia, Luciano’s sister, who sings with her splendid age of 84 “Se tu vuoi così ”, accompanied by the guitar of her son-in-law Michele Biancofiore. Also nice to hear Luciano’s voice as a speaker. It is nice to listen to one of his poems, “Momenti”, together with the heavenly strings of “Jazbo” played by Leo Gadaleta. Nice to see one of his paintings, Il Velo. Yes, because Luciano also used to paint! Finally, it moves me to imagine, ideally, another big artist from the Bari jazz scene, Davide Santorsola, who is part of this cd indirectly, through one of his closest students, Bruno Montrone.

Thanks friends. Thanks Alfredo and Lucia. Thanks Luciano.

Livio Minafra, January 15, 2021

Listen Luciano Zotti

  1. Lucia Zotti voice & Leo Gadaleta strings

Momenti, a poem by Luciano Zotti, 1982 + Samba’s Gold (Luciano Zotti) 1998

  1. Carlo Maria Barile

Freddo (L. Zotti) 1957 – Guido Nenninger Organ, Heiliger Geist Kirche, Regensburg (Germany)

  1. Mike Rubini Quartet

Stile (L. Zotti) 1958

with Mike Rubini alto and tenor sax, Guido Di Leone electric guitar, Giampaolo Laurentaci double bass, Fabio Delle Foglie drums

  1. Livio Minafra piano and whistle

Marimba (L. Zotti) 1959

  1. Vince Abbracciante accordion and hammond organ

Guiros (L. Zotti) 1959

  1. Mirko Signorile piano

Cha cha cha sentimentale (Luciano Zotti and Nico Leone) 1960

  1. Vito Liturri Trio

Divagazioni (L. Zotti) 1960

with Vito Liturri piano, Marco Boccia double bass, Lello Patruno drums

  1. Vito Di Modugno Ensemble

Ice Ball (L. Zotti) 1960

with Vito Di Modugno hammond, Michele Carrabba tenor sax, Pino Di Modugno accordion, Nando Di Modugno guitar, Nunzio Laviero double bass, Mimmo Campanale drums

  1. Bruno Montrone Quartet

Bizzarre (L. Zotti) 1960

with Bruno Montrone piano, Alessandro Bianchi tenor sax, Giampaolo Laurentaci double bass, Dario Riccardo drums

  1. Alfredo Zotti Quintet

Logaritmo (L. Zotti) 1961

with Alfredo Zotti rhodes, Lawrie Pardy trombone, Andrew Webster electric guitar, Frank Holdforth electric bass, Allan Nash drums

  1. Gino Palmisano Quartet guest Maurizio Quintavalle

Fire (L. Zotti) 1963

with Gino Palmisano piano, Gianni Binetti baritone sax, Antonio Fallacara trombone, Maurizio Quintavalle double bass, Nico Colonna drums

  1. Nico Marziliano Trio

Teorema (L. Zotti) 1963

with Nico Marziliano piano, Roberto Inciardi double bass, Franco Guarnieri drums

  1. Gianna Montecalvo Duo

The world goes around (Luciano and Paola Zotti) 1965

with Gianna Montecalvo voice, Nico Marziliano piano

  1. Guido Di Leone Trio guest Livio Minafra

Saratoga (L. Zotti) 1967

with Guido Di Leone electric guitar, Giampaolo Laurentaci double bass, Fabio Delle Foglie drums, Livio Minafra hohner melodica

  1. Gianni Binetti Ensemble guest Aldo Di Caterino

Jazbo (L. Zotti) 1974/1984

with Gianni Binetti alto, tenor and baritone sax, Antonio Fallacara trumpets and trombone, Aldo Di Caterino flute, Leo Gadaleta strings, Nico Triggiani electric guitar, Luigi Catella double bass, Antonio Ninni drums

  1. Lucia Zotti

Se tu vuoi così (Luciano and Paola Zotti) 1992

with Lucia Zotti voice, Michele Biancofiore guitar

  1. Gino Palmisano Sextet guest Livio Minafra

Samba’s Gold (L. Zotti) 1998

with Gino Palmisano piano, Livio Minafra hohner melodica, Leo Gadaleta strings, Gianni Binetti tenor and baritone sax, Antonio Fallacara trumpets and trombone, Luigi Catella double bass, Nico Colonna drums

and more……….


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