Lots of gigs and fun being touristas!

Toscolarno Moderno at the Soltto Le Piante restaurant with special guest Titi Venturelli on sax. Very fun!

Bob and I stopped into Radio Vera for a live performance of the Boomba Boomba song and to promote our gig that evening. Lisa Simmons did a fantastic job of translating during the interview.

Next up was a fantastic gig at the Cafe Grande Italia in Sirmione, owned by the amazing the fantastic and oh so generous Mario Pagiaro. It was a very fun night at this restaurant on the lake in the histroric Sirmione with an appreciative crowd.

Then it was off to Florence for a very fun gig outside in a community park. Check out a live performance there of our co-written song “The Best of Me.” which is all about manifesting your dreams. It’s never too late, as witnessed by this amazing tour in Italy I’m on right now!! Click on the song title above to see the live video!

This was Lisa & I looking “Funky Fresh” for the gig!

Bob, Kelly, Steve and I then took a few days to sight see around to Florence, Cinque Terre and Venice.

Steve in Florence

Taking a very needed wine break on the Cinque Terre trail

Steve & Bob in Pisa

Eating squid ink pasta on the Grande Canal in Venice!

A quick detour for my marketing client Natural Merchants to shoot a promotional video at the winery La Cantina Pizzolato in Treviso.

A beautiful party given by Cesare Valbusa and Daria Toffali.

And back for a gig at the Plaza in Castiglione.

More things I’ve learned:

1) Italy is much more laid back than the U.S.
-We have been going at a much more relaxed and slower pace, enjoying each other and the music along the way!
-Food, especially pranzo (lunch) is very important. A two-hour lunch is the usual, and all businesses close to go home and enjoy family and community from 1-3 in the afternoon.

2) The tourist cities are super busy and hot in peak summer season. I would skip Venice in July. Some people from other countries (which will go unnamed, but are not Italy or US, and rhyme with Terminy and pants) have still not discovered the wonders of deodorant, yet insist on riding the Vaporetti (water taxis) while holding on the to rail above their heads. Other than the masses, Venice is beautiful.

3) Espresso serves several purposes and is drunk pretty much all day long:
-It’s necessary to get going in the morning after being up until 3 a.m. at the gig
-It counteracts the effect of the three bottles of wine at lunch and dinner, so that we can get back to work and gigging in the late afternoon
-It keeps the body plumbing flowing after eating mostly fromage and pasta for the past  2 1/2 weeks!

5) My favorite “Italish” phrase: “Awesomemo!”

6) The beauty of Italy flows through food, landscape, buildings, art, friendship and music. It’s all about amore here!

Last night was the final gig with the entire Hippie Tendencies crew, for now. Next up is a CD project that I am going to put together with Bob, that will incorporate all of the tunes we have written with Lisa Simmons, and will include all of the Hippie Tendencies musicians. We’ll record parts in the US and parts in Italy, then have it mixed and mastered in Italy. More to come on this exciting project!!

I have had a wonderful time here and have a few more precious days to share with my beautiful friends, who are more like family. I’ll write one more blog post on the way hojme to recap the last experiences and send links to some more live videos. Check out more pictures, including the boys driving Ferraris on my Facebook page. Ciao for now!