Before moving to Italy my experience of Italian popular music extended no further than once having inadvertently heard an Eros Ramazzotti song on MTV Europe. But you can’t spend any time in my wife’s hometown of Genoa without getting to know the work of Fabrizio De André. He dominates the city, and his varied repertoire describes it in all its ugliness and beauty, often in Genoese dialect. But he’s not just a local hero – he’s recognised nationwide (and beyond) as one of the all-time great Italian singer songwriters.
I’ll always associate certain songs of his with the year I spent living in Italy, driving along the Ligurian coast or wandering the alleyways of Genoa.