When the great Barry White came to Washington D.C. in 1999, he stood on stage and said: “This is my last show in the D.C..” He was right. Three and a half years later, he died at age 59. He probably never thought he would have an heir, and that this heir was going to be an Italian. And he was right not to think so, since nobody can replace Barry White. But the Italian singer this is about does have a unique, extremely deep voice, similar to Barry’s.
Mario Biondi is a miracle. Counting the octaves he covers would probably take a long time. Also, he manages to sound extremely smooth while his timbre will stun all Soul or voice lovers on the planet. The fact of the matter is: There is only one Mario Biondi. And he is exceptional.
Earth, Wind & Fire was very impressed, when he joined them on stage for “After the Love has Gone”. The British Jazz-Funk group Incognito brought together Mario Biondi and Chaka Khan for an interesting interpretation of Boz Scaggs’ Funk classic “Lowdown”. With the late Al Jarreau, Biondi sang a duet entitled “Light to the World”. With Leon Ware, who recently died as well, he sang “Catch the Sunshine”.
The Italian voice was born in Catania in 1971. His father was a singer, who convinced the little one to join a church choir. At the same time Mario developed his love for Soul. More and more, he would listen to the great male Soul singers who would influence him a lot, including the same Al Jarreau he sang with, decades later, but also Lou Rawls, Isaac Hayes and Bobby Womack.
As a session singer, he became the support act for Ray Charles in 1988 and got a lot of attention. But it would take him until 2006 to release his debut album “Handful of Soul”. Five more studio albums followed, one live album and one sampler entitled “Best of Soul”. On the latter, he interprets Soul classics, including “Rio de Janeiro Blue”, which Randy Crawford sang in the 1980s, and which is mistakenly being called “Rio de Janeiro Blues”, with an “s”, in many cases.
Time for the main aspect here, since this is a Bulgarian publication: Mario Biondi, the Italian Soul star with the deep timbre, will come to Sofia. He will hit the stage at the Sofia Live Club, the entrance to which is located one floor down from the NDK’s main entrance. The concert date is May 25th, 2017. This gig is highly recommended. See you there.