Good is the greatest enemy of great (story of a tribute to a pianist, without a piano)

Paying a tribute to Renato Carosone is a lost challenge from the start, because his recordings are unparalleled. Only musicians of the caliber of Stefano Bollani or Renzo Arbore have managed to do justice to the original recordings. For us at Los Carosones, who are an independent project, one of the biggest challenges in paying homage to the music of an artist of a certain caliber is choosing the instruments. In our case, for example, we bring on stage a tribute to a great Italian pianist, without using the piano. What is the reason for this decision?

On the one hand, the difficulty of playing in venues equipped with a piano – and the refusal to use an electronic keyboard as a substitute. On the other hand, the curiosity to see in what direction Carosone’s original band would have gone if, after his farewell to the scenes in 1959, it had continued without him in the revolutionary 1960’s.
Last, but not least, a reflection of the Master who accompanies us and pushes us to move forward.

Not everyone knows that Carosone, as well as a musician, was also a painter. A few years ago, on the occasion of his last exhibition of paintings, the back cover of the catalog reported one of his thoughts which is also the key to the interpretation of all his artistic production:

«For me, side B of things is the most interesting, the side of the face we don’t want to show; in other words the “defect”.
Whether I do music or painting, the defect is the thing to be valued or highlighted, so cloying and boring is that perfection that confirms the rule according to which “good is the greatest enemy of great”.
Ever since I discovered in music how much the negative side of the subject attracted the attention or interest of the listener, I said to myself: here is the key! And a few steps away was the irony that I did not take long to make an integral part of my work.
For some time now brushes and colors have been the right alternative to my music, and today I live a little on the black and white of the piano, and a little on the color of the colors.»

In a world that often takes itself too seriously, Renato Carosone’s music imposes the lightness of self-irony through the stories of the characters who animate the songs.
And it transports you to the border between theater and reality where, thanks to a laugh, you can forget for a while the troubles and difficulties of everyday life.
In the Los Carosones concerts we learned to accept many things: the unrequited loves of “Guaglione” and “Pigliate ‘na pastiglia“, the surreal disguises of “Caravan Petrol” and “Pasqualino Marajà“, the ephemeral illusions of “Tu vuo’ fa’ l’americano”.
But above all, to know and accept our imperfections and our limitations, until they become the excuse for a big, sonorous laugh.