11-02-2021 by Freddie del Curatolo
This pandemic year has not only infected people and seriously or fatally attacked the weakest and most vulnerable, but has also dealt knockout blows to aspects of social life and the awareness of being men and women, and not robotic animals.
Among these aspects are those closest to me and Sbringo: music, culture, shows, events, relations with the public. Aspects that, first and foremost, feed our passion, keep us alive and have kept alive the world we have always enjoyed being part of and for which we have lived.
We can still get back on our feet, but we need optimism, energy and the desire to rediscover ourselves as curious, interested, playful and to still believe in human relationships.
The Brazilian poet Vinicius De Moraes used to say: "Life is the art of meeting".
Now, in addition to the difficulty of meeting each other, there is a risk that the preconditions for creating that harmony between those who produce art and entertainment and those who receive it will fall away. All in the same social centrifuge, all with the same format and distribution channels, whether it is a video inviting people to boycott vaccines or a politician's joke, a comedian's sketch or the memory of a dead footballer.
At a time when theatres in Italy are not reopening, musicians are sad to record acoustic sessions on the sofa and young people have fewer and fewer points of reference, Freddie and Sbringo are convinced that they are in the best of all possible worlds, Kenya.
With all its problems, paradoxes, social inequalities and all the grotesque aspects of the former "Italian colony" Malindi in which we live and of which, until last March, we sang and talked about in our shows.
Even here, however, now no shows, no live music and no stories.
But the desire to get together, write, create and give melodies and arrangements to ironic, poetic, surreal and semi-serious verses has never abandoned us.
So we set about choosing the most representative songs of recent years, retouching and updating them and remembering when "Once upon a time there were Italians in Kenya".
So this could only be the title of the album we are preparing.
An album? In 2021? With the irreversible coma of discography?
Without being able to perform it live?
Eh, it seems that being in Malindi, the love for paradoxes has infected us like a gypsy variant.
Anyway, here we are, with the great Sbringo spurting notes, reviving instruments that are still alive and inventing virtual ones, and me trying to sing the best I can and tell the unique and unforgettable tale of our compatriots on the Kenyan coast.
Some titles? "International Airport", "There's always someone in Kenya", "Because of a Masai", as well as the title track of the album and many others and "Tourists, where have you gone?", the song we chose to launch our initiative, with a video shot entirely between Malindi and Mayungu, thanks to the availability of our sponsor Malaika Beach.
Oh yes, because here comes the worst part: without gigs, without initiatives and events, without cachet our finances have been irremediably reduced... to finish the album, which will then be sold in digital format and, we hope, also produced in a limited edition for those nostalgic like us of records (or at least of CDs, which can also be played in DVD players), we need a hand.
Just as we need help to produce more videos like the one you can now see running here and on Youtube. To contribute to the production of the album you can send a dedicated contribution on Mpesa (from Kenya) or via Paypal, to +254720178982 specifying that it's for Freddie and Sbringo.
If you wish, your name will be among the associate producers of "Once Upon a Time There Were Italians in Kenya"!
I know that some of you have already given concrete help to Malindikenya.net to continue to offer its important daily service, but here we are talking about other types of survival, those of the spirit, creativity, the pleasure of smiling at life and its strangeness ... and to be able to still feel emotions.
We still believe in it!
Enjoy watching and... tourists, we want you here!!!
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