Ciao from Italy! There is so much history (physically and theoretically) built into this city, it is a huge transition for a girl from Chicago, which now seems like an extremely modern city.
I am not sure about every European country, but Italian MTV is almost polar opposite from American MTV in the sense that the Italian one actually plays music (no offense to the homeland). It seems almost every restaurant and café shows MTV nearly 24/7, including a café on my campus. Music videos are played constantly, some very familiar, some very Italian. But overall very enjoyable tunes. This is actually the primary way I learn the popular music here in Italy. That and taking taxis.
My favorite one so far is called “Sabato” by Jovanotti. It always makes its way onto the radio while in a taxi, automatically starting a party. Wanting to find out more about his music, I learned that his lyrics address political, philosophical and religious ideas. I would have no clue since I speak minimal Italian, but all the while his sound is still very appealing. After learning this, I have a totally different outlook on his music video, which sometimes was pretty awkward to watch in public.
Jovanotti is the stage name of Italian singer-songwriter (or Cantautori, in Italian) Lorenzo Cherubini, also known as “Jova” by his fans. He has taken on genres galore by changing from hip hop to rap to disco to funk to classical to world, all the while changing the topics of his songs. Even though his breakthrough in 1988 with the album “Jovanotti for President” was a commercial success with the youth, he revamped his style to his current niche. For any Sopranos fans, his song “Piove” was used for a second season ending credits tune. In the UK, he was known as the presenter of the DEF II program called “Gimme 5.”
This guy is really involved with philanthropy and I can tell he wants to change the world. He has previously worked with organizations like Amnesty International, Make Poverty History and dedicated time to events like Global Call to Action Against Poverty. He even befriended U2 lead singer Bono in a mutual interest of helping African foreign debt.