Rare HD-Vinyls 96/24 (Fidelio) Carlo Bergonzi – Neapolitan Songs

Just yesterday a user pointed my attention on a “Youtube” clip, the song “Dicitenciello vuje” sung by the fantastic Tito Gobbi. A great performance indeed…and I thought, I have this on vinyl, sung by Bergonzi…have I it or had I? OK, here is it. On searching for infos for this post I just discovered, Carlo died some weeks ago, aged 90 and my heart jumped into sadness. What a great tenor he was, surely among the greatest ever in “Belcanto”. Trained as a baritone but in 1950 came to the realisation that he may be a tenor and retrained. Although he performed and recorded some belcanto and verismo roles, he is above all associated with the operas of Giuseppe Verdi, including a large number of the composer’s lesser-known works that he helped revive.  R.I.P. Maestro!

# Composer: Many Different
# Performer:
Carlo Bergonzi
# Orchestra: Chamber Orchestra Madrid
# Conductor: Enrico Pessina
# Vinyl (1970???)
# Number of discs: 1
# Format: Flac
# Label: Fidelio
# DR-Analysis: DR 11
# Size: 877 MB
# Scan: yes
# Server: FileFactory

Every Italian tenor worth his salt has given a whirl to these popular pieces — Pavarotti and Di Stefano in more than one album — and back in the day, Gigli and Schipa and Caruso had at them too. This is, as far as I know, Bergonzi’s only recording of this kind of material. It dates from around 1970 (the time of Bergonzi’s fine recordings of “Forza del Destino” and the “Lucia di Lammermoor” with Sills). It sounds wonderful. The voice is a bit forwardly recorded (a feature of “pop” recordings typically) — but what a voice! It has been said that Bergonzi lacked the charisma of Corelli and the vividness of Di Stefano, but he has a good-sized warm and distinctive voice and he is a better musician than either of these near-contemporaries. There isn’t a better rendering of “Torna a Surriento” anywhere (and Domingo’s and Pavarotti’s are fine), and “Core ‘Ngrato” (only one verse, unfortunately) is eloquent, but my favorite might be the chilling “Chiove.” But there isn’t a bad track on the disc. The disc seems to be hard to find nowadays. Carlo Bergonzi was the great successor to Bjoerling in the Italian operatic repertory generally (and Domingo was HIS successor in turn). If you find this one in a remainder bin, grab it.



Canzone napoletana, sometimes referred to as Neapolitan song, is a generic term for a traditional form of music sung in the Neapolitan language, ordinarily for the male voice singing solo, although well represented by female soloists as well, and expressed in familiar genres such as the lover’s complaint or the serenade. It consists of a large body of composed popular music—such songs as ‘O Sole mio; Torna a Surriento; Funiculì, Funiculà; Santa Lucia and others.

The Neapolitan song became a formal institution in the 1830s due to an annual song-writing competition for the Festival of Piedigrotta, dedicated to the Madonna of Piedigrotta, a well-known church in the Mergellina area of Naples. The winner of the first festival was a song entitled Te voglio bene assaie; it is traditionally attributed to the prominent opera composer Gaetano Donizetti, although an article published in 1984 by Marcello Sorce Keller shows there is no historical evidence in support of the attribution. The festival ran regularly until 1950, when it was abandoned. A subsequent Festival of Neapolitan Song on Italian state radio enjoyed some success in the 1950s but was eventually abandoned as well.

The period since 1950 has produced such songs as Malafemmena by Totò, Maruzzella by Renato Carosone, Indifferentemente by Mario Trevi and Carmela by Sergio Bruni. Although separated by some decades from the earlier classics of this genre, they have now become Neapolitan “classics” in their own right.

Many of the Neapolitan songs are world-famous because they were taken abroad by emigrants from Naples and southern Italy roughly between 1880 and 1920. The music was also popularized abroad by performers such as Enrico Caruso, who took to singing the popular music of his native city as encores at the Metropolitan Opera in New York in the early 1900s. Caruso is therefore responsible for the fact that operatic tenors since then have been required to know these songs. This has led to such recent phenomena as The Three Tenors – three opera singers performing, at least in part, popular songs from Naples. Plácido Domingo, has recorded a full CD Italia ti amo of traditional and some more modern Neapolitan and Italian songs. Luciano Pavarotti recorded three albums of Neapolitan and Italian songs: The Best: Disc 2, (2005), Pavarotti Songbook, (1991), and Romantica, (2002). Mario Lanza recorded an acclaimed selection of 12 Neapolitan songs on his 1959 album, Mario! Lanza At His Best. Opera/Pop crossover tenor, Sergio Franchi recorded his very popular Billboard Top 25 RCA debut album, Romantic Italian Songs in 1962, and continued to record Neapolitan songs on most of his albums throughout his career. Andrea Bocelli recorded an album in 2009 dedicated to the style, entitled Incanto.

The most important native Neapolitan performers of Neapolitan songs in the last few decades include Roberto Murolo, Mario Trevi, Mario Abbate, Mario Merola, Giulietta Sacco, Franco Ricci Sergio Bruni, who to Neapolitans is considered the greatest contemporary Neapolitan singer, and was also an outstanding guitarist and composer, Renato Carosone, and Mario Maglione. Murolo is known not only as a singer, but as a composer, scholar and collector of the music; his collection of twelve LPs, released in the 1960s, is an annotated compendium of Neapolitan song dating back to the twelfth century and is the “Bible” for those interested in performing or simply learning more about the music. Representatives of different veins, but nevertheless leading the continuing tradition of song in Neapolitan are the jazz-rock singer-songwriter Pino Daniele and the folkloric group Nuova Compagnia di Canto Popolare.[3]

An important factor in defining what makes a Neapolitan song is the matter of language. All these songs are written and performed in the Neapolitan language (Napulitano). The matter of dialect has not prevented a few non-Neapolitans from writing dialect versions of Neapolitan songs. The most famous example of this is “‘A Vucchella” by Gabriele D’Annunzio.



A1 Cordiferro-Cardillo Core ‘ngrato    
A2 Russo-Di Capua I’ te vurria vasa’    
A3 Fusco-Falvo Dicitenciello vuje    
A4 Nicolardi-De Curtis Voce e notte    
A5 Bovio-Nicola-Tagliaferri Passione    
B1 De Flavis-Pennino Pecche’    
B2 Pisano-Cioffi ‘Na sera ‘e Maggio    
B3 Bovio-Nardella Chiove    
B4 Murolo-Tagliaferri Piscatore e pusilleco    
B5 De Curtis Torna a Surriento

 Analyzed folder: /96kCaBe_CanNap/96k Carlo Bergonzi – Canzoni Napoletane
 DR        Peak        RMS        Filename
 DR11        -0.43 dB     -15.91 dB     A1 Cordiferro-Cardillo – Core ‘ngrato.wav
 DR12        -2.13 dB     -16.03 dB     A2 Russo-Di Capua – I’ te vurria vasa’.wav
 DR11        -1.37 dB     -15.76 dB     A3 Fusco-Falvo – Dicitenciello vuje.wav
 DR12        -1.63 dB     -17.14 dB     A4 Nicolardi-De Curtis – Voce e notte.wav
 DR13        -0.87 dB     -17.81 dB     A5 Bovio-Nicola-Tagliaferri – Passione.wav
 DR11        -0.41 dB     -17.36 dB     B1 De Flavis-Pennino – Pecche’.wav
 DR11        -2.29 dB     -17.93 dB     B2 Pisano-Cioffi – ‘Na sera ‘e Maggio.wav
 DR12        -3.27 dB     -19.76 dB     B3 Bovio-Nardella – Chiove.wav
 DR11        -1.70 dB     -17.20 dB     B4 Murolo-Tagliaferri – Piscatore e pusilleco.wav
 DR11        -0.34 dB     -14.70 dB     B5 De Curtis – Torna a Surriento.wav
 Number of files:    10
 Official DR value:    DR11



  • Tenor – Carlo Bergonzi
  • Orchestra – Madrid Chamber Orchestra
  • Conductor – Enrico Pessina


Ripping Infos


If You hear some clicks and pops here and there, Who cares?
Id rather have a few light anomalies instead of destroying the music.
Enjoy the music, not the ticks & pops.
I tend more and more, in the last time, to de-click with an automatic setting between 0.7 and 1.2 so you can say, my rips are like half rough rips.

  • Software: iZotope RX 4 Advanced, Adobe Audition CS 5.5, Twisted Wave 1.9
  • Very light de-clicking with iZotope, significant clicks manually removing, no de-noising
  • DR-Analisys before converting to Flac
  • Converting Wave -> Flac: Twisted Wave 1.9
  • Artwork: Sony Alpha 350, Epson Perfection V750 Pro, Photoshop CS 5.5

If you like what i do, please consider that a little donation would be very appreciate.
I reinvest all donations in maintenance of my rig, for purchasing cleaning solutions and, most important of all, purchasing of new vinyls.
Click on the “Donate”-button.

Thank you very much !

Download from FileFactory
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PW: LaWally

15 thoughts on “Rare HD-Vinyls 96/24 (Fidelio) Carlo Bergonzi – Neapolitan Songs

  1. Not only as good as you say but better and very pleasurable. Now I think I have everything Bergonzi recorded, at least of what I am aware.
    Grazie, Alfredo el magicione (don’t know the word for magician), but that’s you.

    • the magician = il mago 😉
      it was for me anyway a little exciting, years ago, to be in the place where Giuseppe Verdi was born and knowing I could have met one of the greatest tenors of the last 60 years…of course, I knew at the time Bergonzi was 83-84 years old and maybe I wouldn’t see him in his restaurant.

  2. Thank you Mr. Rach for such a great gift! All Songs are just perfectlt performed! Waht a voice! Honestly have no words to express how grateful I am! Best of all!

    • Grazie, fratello.
      Any Italian I know I got from the operas, not a text book.
      Lots of fascinating tenors world wide. You even displayed that Chinese guy who was unbelievable. But other than Bjoerling, Italian tenors hold the greatest respect. Even one like Mario Filippeschi whose high notes in the old Cetra Wm. Tell were unbelievable. Not a very “pretty” voice, but what a top.

  3. Rachmaninov, thanks for all the effort and joy you bring to peoples homes. You rule, nuff said.

    However… I’m really frustrated about the fact I can’t get my hands on the sweet stuff in the Rock and Jazz departement. Isn’t this supposed to be a single sign-on? Where do I register to get access to this mother-load of fine art? I’m clueless, please help me. Please!

    • Hi boy, sorry, but the mentioned sections are whatever’s world, so please write to Whatever, he’s the owner of this blog. Or wait until he answers to you…he reads all messages.

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