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A natural communicator and a controversial, passionate artist, Antonello Venditti (born in Rome on 8 March 1949) has succeeded in gaining popularity that goes far beyond the world of the popular song. His artistic development began at secondary school, where he studied piano and wrote his first songs. During university he performed at the Folkstudio, the legendary music workshop in Rome, and took part in the first concerts dedicated to politically engaged songs. In 1972 he made his recording debut (at Vincenzo Micocci's It) with the album "Theorius Campus", recorded together with Francesco De Gregori. Like many of his fellow singer-songwriters, Venditti expressed the highly-charged political atmosphere of those years in his songs. Over the following years, a successful combination of sentiment and political tension inspired songs that rapidly became classics (including "Roma Capoccia", "Le cose della vita", "Sora Rosa", "Lilly", "Campo de' fiori" and "Marta"). He took part in the large student gatherings of the period, electrified concerts with his legendary piano playing, and in 1975 rose to the top of the charts with Lilly, the tragic story of a drug addict friend. Paradoxically, it was this splendid song of love and death that marked his coming of age as a pop star and enjoyed sales of a million copies. Shortly afterwards he switched record company (from RCA to Philips), wrote a film soundtrack together with Lucio Dalla ("Signore e signori, buonanotte"), and released two enormously popular albums: "Sotto il segno dei pesci" (which together with the title song also contains "Sara", "Giulia" and "Bomba non bomba") in 1978 and "Buona Domenica" in 1979. He now began a splendid series of concerts that placed him among the big names in the Italian song genre. Two years later, in 1983, he released the LP "Sotto la pioggia". This was immediately followed by the song "Grazie Roma" dedicated to his home city, followed by the historic concert in the Circo Massimo. 1984 was the year of the album "Cuore" (containing hits such as "Ci vorrebbe un amico" and "Notte prima degli esami"). In 1986 Venditti wrote the soundtrack for the film "Troppo forte" for his friend Carlo Verdone and recorded the album "Venditti e segreti", which further boosted his now enormous popularity. Then came "In questo mondo di ladri" (1988) and "Benvenuti in Paradiso" (1991), both of which secured sales of more than a million copies, followed by "Prendilo tu questo frutto amaro" (1995). These CDs were promoted through massive concerts with football-stadium size audiences. In 1997 he released "Antonello nel paese delle meraviglie". Yet another commercially successful album, it featured eleven of Venditti's finest songs reinterpreted in an orchestral style (with the 97 instrumentalists and 40 choral singers of the Bulgarian Symphony Orchestra of Sophia, conducted by Renato Serio), together with a new track entitled "Ho fatto un sogno" composed together with Ennio Morricone. It was two years before the next album came out in September 1999. This was entitled "Goodbye N9vecento" and was dedicated to the passing of the millennium. In November 2000 a collection of Antonello Venditti's finest love songs was released, entitled "Se l'amore Ŕ amore".
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Antonello Venditti 
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08 March, 1949 
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