We ended our tour with a couple of gigs without the entire HT crew. Bob and I did a duo at the Can e Gatto (dog and cat) bar in Garde. It was a fun night playing in a very small but packed bar to an international audience.
We then were joined by Cesare and Massimo again for a gig outside a bar in the beautiful town of Peschiera. We have never seen so many beautiful cars and beautiful people! There was lots of dancing in the streets by the young and old, and it was a great final gig in Italy.
We also had a great deal of fun our last few days there. We were given a private boat tour and tour of the archeological dig of Sirmione by the amazing Mario Pagiaro (owner of Caffe Grande Italia where we also played) who’s family has lived in Sirmione for centuries. It was amazing to hear his stories of growing up in such a historical place.
We had an amazing 24 mile bike trek to the midevil town of Borghetto, followed by a fantastic lunch at a restuarnt by the river. To my surprise, no one gave me the evil eye in this 4 star white table cloth establishment when I came in wearing stinky bike clothes!
We ended our trip with a fantastic day at a huge Terma in the country, then a final dinner at QB-Quanto Basta in Colombare, Sirmione with Sylvia and Mateo who outdid themselves again!! I have never had such amazing, diverse food than at their restaurant.
Now back at home, here is my reflection on the trip (wrtten in the airport back home):
What an adventure it has been! 3 weeks with 8 gigs in 8 different Italian cities, from large to small venues, all to appreciative crowds who appreciated all of our music, from originals to funky cover tunes. The area in which we mostly played, Lago de Garda, is an international tourist destination, we often played to an audience made up of people primarily from Italy, Germany and the UK. It was a thrill for me to watch people of all ages and ethnicities dancing and grooving to our original music. While they may not have understood every word, they got the general feeling for the music and appreciated our musicianship and enthusiasm.
One song that was especially popular with every crowd was the Boomba Boomba Song or Set It Free. It’s all about our love for our dear Italian friends and the joy we felt both when they were here and when we were there. As Cesare likes to say when he loves something so much “It’s very boomba boomba!” thus the title of the song! Check out a live performance of Boomba Boomba here.
Our hosts, Lisa Simmons and Marco Cremaschini of Hippie Tendencies, along with their dear friend and super fan Laura Giardina, bent over backwards to book us (grazie mille Lisa!) house us, feed us, show us their country and share their love. We will be forever grateful for their generosity and support, as without it we could not have made the tour possible.
Our musical partnership that began last September has been incredible. Lisa, Bob and I have written 7 songs together and we worked them up with the entire band and performed the majority of them during our Grande Tour d’Italia. All of the new songs I am using in my show have a common theme: Passione. I am living proof that it’s possible to live a passionate, full life and to manifest your wildest dreams. I started my professional musical journey ten years ago, and knew then that touring Europe would someday be an important milestone. The universe let me take the time to grow and become the musician I am today in order to be ready for this big step. I know that this is only the beginning of a long-term amazing musical partnership.
Next up for me: writing a few more new songs together with Lisa and Bob, then recording them with the Hippie Tendencies band. It will be an international, virtual CD project, recorded in Italy and the US and mixed and mastered in Italy. Stay tuned for more on this exciting project and how you can be involved!
Future manifestation plans include touring different parts of Europe and the US with the new CDs (Hippie Tendencies is also working on a new CD project and both should be done around the same time). And, of course, spending more time together with our dear Italian friends. Thanks to everyone for their generosity and support during our three-week visit and for helping me to make my dreams a reality. Addio per ora alla mia amata Italia e gli amici (goodbye for now my beloved Italy and friends!).