Tag Archives: Did You know?


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Hi Everyone,

It’s getting closer!!! Those concert dates are coming up pretty quick. Let me guess, you’re counting the days, right?

Piero, Ignazio and Gianluca are still home in Italy, they seem to be eating, dancing and hitting the beach. More on that later.


I’ve done a lot of posts featuring Italian and Italian American singers. There are still some I haven’t done yet. Italy seems to spawn some great singers (as if we didn’t know that) They have reached perfection when they sent us Il Volo!! ūüôā


James William Ercolani (born June 8, 1936), known by his stage name James Darren, is an Italian-American television and film actor, television director, and singer.

Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on June 8, 1936, Darren began his career as a teen idol, having been discovered by talent agent and casting director Joyce Selznick. This encompassed roles in films, most notably his role as Moondoggie in Gidget in 1959, as well as a string of pop hits for Colpix Records, the biggest of which was “Goodbye Cruel World” (#3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1961). It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc. Another sizeable hit was “Her Royal Majesty” (#6 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1962). He is also featured in one of the Scopitone series of pop music video jukebox films (“Because You’re Mine”).

James Darren is not related to Bobby Darin. This confusion sometimes arises because: their names are pronounced similarly, they are the same age, they both started their careers as teen idols with similarly styled songs, both later sang some of the same standard pop/jazz ballads, and they are both associated with Gidget. James starred in “Gidget” films as Gidget’s (Sandra Dee) love interest. In real life, Bobby was the love interest: he married Sandra Dee. During this time, he also appeared as a guest star on the popular ABC-TV sitcom The Donna Reed Show.

Darren’s role in the 1961 World War II film The Guns of Navarone was an attempt to break out of his teen image. He was the singing voice of Yogi Bear in the 1964 animated film, Hey There, It’s Yogi Bear!, on the song “Ven-e, Ven-o, Ven-a”. Prior to that, he was the singing and speaking voice of “Jimmy Darrock” on an episode of The Flintstones. He then achieved success co-starring as impulsive scientist and adventurer Tony Newman in the science fiction television series, The Time Tunnel (1966‚Äď1967).james d1

In the 1970s, Darren appeared as a celebrity panelist on Match Game.

Later Darren had a regular role as Officer James Corrigan on the television police drama T. J. Hooker from 1983‚Äď1986. Subsequently he worked as a director on many action-based television series, including Hunter, The A-Team, and Nowhere Man, as well as dramas such as Beverly Hills, 90210 and Melrose Place.¬†¬†¬† james d2

In 1998, he achieved renewed popularity as a singer through his appearances on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine in the role of holographic crooner and advice-giver Vic Fontaine; many of his performances on the show were re-recorded for the album This One’s from the Heart (1999). The album showed Darren, a close friend of Frank Sinatra, comfortably singing in the Sinatra style; the 2001 follow-up Because of You showed similar inspiration from Tony Bennett.



Gianluca is spending time at the beach and just relaxing?


Ignazio is spending time with Piero in a recording studio?


Piero and Ignazio are taking dancing lessons?


Monday¬†May 12th was their manager’s, Michele Torpedine’s birthday?


Piero still loving his food?

piero food

Ignazio got another tattoo?

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Gianluca sends a sweet message to his fans everyday?


Love “You Guys” can’t wait for next month!!!

*******UPDATE: Today Gianluca tweeted from Bologna that Il Volo was recording and rehearsing!!!

*****Check the post below,”Who’s¬†Going Where” if you want to add your name to the concert list*****






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Hi Everyone.

It seems as the concert in Russia was a great success. Il Volo loved being there and expressed they would like to return soon.

On¬†their return, they had a brief rest, ¬†we see Piero enjoying a soccer match on TV. Ignazio tweeted about going to Venice, “The City of Love”. Gianluca sent out an adorable picture of him and Ernesto at a young age ,so cute!! You can view the pictures on Mundial and All Things Il Volo.

Now Il Volo is in Venice!! We don’t know why yet, they’re moving around so much this year it’s hard to keep track!!

I found kelly’s post about a Novella based on Il Volo and their lives VERY interesting, think of the fun that will be!


I thought some of you, like me, were “bobby soxers” back in the day, you might want to remember Bobby Darin.


Bobby Darin (born Walden Robert Cassotto; May 14, 1936 ‚Äď December 20, 1973) was an American singer, songwriter, and actor of film and television. He performed in a range of music genres, including pop, rock’n’roll, jazz, folk, and country. bob2

He started as a songwriter for Connie Francis, and recorded his own first million-seller Splish Splash in 1958. This was followed by Dream Lover, Mack the Knife, and Beyond the Sea, which brought him world fame. In 1962, he won a Golden Globe for his first film Come September, co-starring his first wife, Sandra Dee.

Throughout the 1960s, he became more politically active and worked on Robert Kennedy’s Democratic presidential campaign. He was present on the night of June 4/5, 1968, at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles at the time of Kennedy’s assassination. The same year, he discovered that he had been brought up by his grandparents, not his parents, and that the girl he thought was his sister was actually his mother. These events deeply affected Darin and sent him into a long period of seclusion.

Although he made a successful television comeback, his health was beginning to fail, as he had always expected, following bouts of rheumatic fever in childhood. This knowledge of his vulnerability had always spurred him on to exploit his musical talent while still young. He died at age 37, following a heart operation in Los Angeles.

Darin was born in the Bronx borough of New York City. He was reared by his grandparents, whom he thought were his parents. Darin’s mother became pregnant at age 16 and, presumably because of the scandalous nature of such in that era, the family hatched a plan to pass the baby off as his maternal grandparents’ child. Darin’s mother never revealed who the father of her child was, not even to Darin, who was reportedly devastated at learning the true circumstances of his birth. His maternal grandfather, Saverio Antonio Cassotto, was of Italian descent. His maternal grandmother, Vivian Fern (Walden), was of Colonial English and Danish ancestry  and a vaudeville singer. His mother, Vanina Cassotto, was presented as his elder sister. He only learned of their actual relationship in 1968, when he was 32.bob3

In 1959, Darin recorded the self-penned, “Dream Lover”, a ballad that became a multi-million seller. With it came financial success and the ability to demand more creative control of his career. So he meant for his That’s All album to show that he could sing more than rock and roll. His next single, “Mack the Knife”, the standard from Kurt Weill’s Threepenny Opera ¬†was given a vamping jazz-pop interpretation. Although Darin initially was opposed to releasing it as a single, the song went to No. 1 on the charts for nine weeks, sold two million copies, and won the Grammy Award for Record of the Year in 1960. Darin was also voted the Grammy Award for Best New Artist that year, and “Mack The Knife” has since been honored with a Grammy Hall of Fame Award.

Darin followed “Mack” with “Beyond the Sea,” a jazzy English-language version of Charles Trenet’s French hit song “La Mer”.

His first major film, Come September (1960), was a teenager-oriented romantic comedy with 18-year old actress Sandra Dee. They first met during the production of the film, fell in love, and got married soon afterwards. Dee gave birth to a son Dodd Mitchell Darin (also known as Morgan Mitchell) the following year, 1961, but the couple divorced in 1967. Dee and Darin made a few films together with moderate success.bobsan

In 1962, Darin won the Golden Globe Award for “New Star Of The Year – Actor” for his role in Come September. ¬†The following year he was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for “Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama” (Best actor) in Pressure Point.

In 1963, he was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his role as a shell-shocked soldier in Captain Newman, M.D.. At the Cannes Film Festival he won the French Film Critics Award for best actor.

In October 1964, he appeared as a wounded ex-convict who is befriended by an orphan girl in “The John Gillman Story” episode of NBC’s Wagon Train western television series.

In 1973, after failing to take antibiotics to protect his heart before a dental visit, Darin developed an overwhelming systemic infection (sepsis). This further weakened his body and affected one of his heart valves. On December 11, he checked himself into Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles for another round of open-heart surgery to repair the two artificial heart valves he had received in January 1971. On the evening of December 19, a five-man surgical team worked for over six hours to repair his damaged heart. Shortly after the surgery ended in the early morning hours of December 20, 1973, Darin died in the recovery room without regaining consciousness. He was 37 years old.bob4

There were no funeral arrangements; Darin’s last wish in his will was that his body be donated to science for medical research. His remains were transferred to UCLA Medical Center shortly after his death.

Let’s have some of your thoughts on Bobby. It’s sad that his life was cut so short.


Waiting for more news from Il Volo on their next tour, trip, appearance, anything. We’re anxious for more news.¬† In the meantime,Guys, enjoy your time off!!

venicePicture sent by Il Volo from Venice.





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Hi Everyone,

Well here we are, already in February. What happened to January, do you know?

It’s the day after Super Bowl Sunday!!¬†I hope those of you that like football and went to¬†Super Bowl parties had a terrific time.¬† Hope you didn’t eat too much or over do the beer!! ¬†I also hope your team won!! ¬†For the rest that¬† had a¬†quiet Sunday and enjoyed Il Volo videos and Il Volo CD’s, you had a great Sunday too!

It seems Ignazio’s appearance at his friend’s concert has gone well, hope they had a terrific turnout. Check out our video!

Ignazio has tweeted a picture of himself with his new dog, Buddy. Check Mundial or All Things Il Volo for the really cute photo.

Gianluca has tweeted that he is taking driving lessons!

Piero tweeted a good morning kiss, while sitting at his piano!

Today’s “Did You Know” looks into the career of Frankie Laine. I know you remember him, he had a 75 year career as a singer, did you know that? He was another of the great singers of Italian descent that has entertained us over the years.


Frankie Laine was born Francesco Paolo LoVecchio in Chicago, Il in 1923. His parents had emigrated from Monreale, Sicily. His father worked at one time as the personal barber of Al Capone. A young Francisco was with his grandfather when he was gunned down by rival gangsters.  Francesco changed his name professionally to Frankie Laine in 1938.

It is not possible to cover his long career here. His emotionally charged style after WW 2 was considered the harbinger of Rock and Roll music to come. It was said “Laine cannot be categorized” , he’s one of those singers not on one track.

His famous songs include “That’s My Desire“, “That Lucky Old Sun“, “Mule Train“,”High Noon”¬† and “Rawhide“. He is well known for singing the theme songs on many westerns.


His last public appearance was on “My Music” on PBS in 2005. He died in 2007 at the age of 93.

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Keeping with the theme of entertainers of Italian descent, do you remember Pat Cooper, the comedian? No, he was not a singer, but he used his Italian backround in his comedy all the time!

Pat Cooper was born Pasquale Caputo in Brooklyn, NY on 7/31/29. His Mom emigrated from Naples Compania and Foher. His dad, from Mola di Bari, Foggia. Pat Cooper often appeared as second billing with Sinara, Martin, Martin and Lewis, Bennett, Connie Frances and Tony Martin. He was a TV fixture for years on Perry Como, Ed Sullivan and Mike Douglas, to name a few. Today he is age 85 and still considers taking some TV rolls!

Did you know this about the beautiful city of Naples in Italy?


Naples is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. Bronze Age Greek settlements were established in the Naples area in the second millennium BC A larger colony ‚Äď initially known as Parthenope ‚Äď developed on the Island of Megaride around the ninth century BC, at the end of the Greek Dark Ages. The city was refounded as Ne√°polis in the sixth century BC and became a lynchpin of Magna Graecia playing a key role in the merging of Greek culture into Roman society and eventually becoming a cultural centre of the Roman Republic¬†Naples remained influential after the fall of the Western RomanEmpire, serving as the capital city of the Kingdom of Naples between 1282 and 1816. Thereafter, in union with Sicily, it became the capital of the Two Sicilies until the unification of Italy in 1861. During the Neapolitan War of 1815, Naples strongly promoted Italian unification.

Remember February 11th is Gianluca’s 19th birthday, hope you all sent your greetings in for the video.

As we know on March 6th, Il Volo will appear at “The Theatre” at Madison Square Garden as the guests of Italian singer, Laura Pausini. I don’t know about you, but I’m excited that they will be back here in The States again. When we have information on any further activity, we’ll let you know.

Gianlucca tweeted today, “Going back to Ny and LA in a month” Could LA mean recording??¬† Just askin’them


DID YOU KNOW????????

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Hi Everyone,

I hope everyone up in the frozen Tundra is staying warm!! I hope talking about Il Volo and seeing their pictures and videos¬†are keeping you¬†cozy on these cold winter nights. Here in Florida it will be 81 today. I’m not boasting too much, when summer comes and the weather here is like being blasted by a furnace and staying in air conditioning is all you can do, you can¬† brag about your balmy summer breezes and I’m sure, usually cooler nights!

No real news about “The Boys” Gianluca is tweeting up a storm and Piero says he studying the “Ave Maria” Ignazio is not tweeting lately, maybe soon hopefully!

So we will do another round of Did you Know???

From The NY Times
From The NY Times

Did you know when Il Volo was just starting the “Boys” and their families were very nervous about touring? It was a great sacrifice for the families, none of them are wealthy and except for Ignazio, had younger siblings. Ignazio’s mother owned a pizza restaurant and left Ignazio’s older sister to run it. Because all of “The Boys” were underage at the time they each had to have at least one parent accompany them.¬† It’s nice to see that even including their last tour, they still had a parent accompany them, though they are now old enough to be on their own!

This time I thought we’d look back on one of America’s all time favorite singers, Perry Como. All of us of a certain age remember those days of TV when all the entertainment was family oriented. I remember our whole family watched The Perry Como Show every week! His Christmas specials were much anticipated every holiday season.

Pierino Ronald Como was born in Cannonsburg, PA in 1912, the seventh of 13 children, and the first one born in the United States.  Although he could barely afford it,  his father insisted all his children have music lessons. Perry played instruments, but did not sing until he was older.       A young Perry Como

When Perry was 14 years old he had his own barber shop which later became a venue of sorts for weddings and other functions, with Perry singing of course.

Perry Como met his wife Roselle when she was 17. They married in 1933 and had  3 children. They were married 65 years at the time of her death.

Perry Como’s weekly TV show was on from 1949-1963.¬†His Kraft Music Theater monthly show was on¬†until 1967. His Christmas Specials were on until 1994, the last one from Ireland.

Some of Perry’s best known songs were “Papa Loves Mambo”, “Hot Diggity dog”, “And I love You So”, “Catch A Falling Star” and “It’s Impossible”. His rendition of “Ave Maria” was always sung on his Christmas Special. He, by the way, did not perform this song in front of a live¬†audience, he thought it not appropriate. It was his most requested song, he taped it without an audience to be shown on his special

He was affectionately known as “Mr C”. Bing Crosby said of him “He re-invented casual” Perry loved playing golf.¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† mr c

Perry Como died in 2001 at the age of 88 in Jupiter Inlet Colony, Florida. he was much loved and I’ll always remember him as a part of my life as I grew up.

Did you Know, that IL Volo’s management team headed by Michele Torpedine is based in Bologna, Italy? Here is a small history of this historical city.

Bologna (Italian pronunciation: [boňąlo…≤…≤a] ( Emilian: Bul√•ggna pronounced [buňąl…ô…≤…≤a]; Latin: Bononia) is the largest city (and the capital) of Emilia-Romagna Region in Italy. It is the seventh most populous city in Italy, located in the heart of a metropolitan area (officially recognized by the Italian government as a citt√† metropolitana) of about one million.

Kelly asked that I remind you that the deadline for the Gianluca birthday post is this coming Friday 1/31. Please, if you can, send something for the video presentation.

On a personal note, this past Saturday I had the pleasure of having dinner with LeeLee and Joan from “The Crew” I had met LeeLee before, but this was the first time the 3 of us had a chance to meet. What did we talk about? What do YOU think?

Until the next time, Linda