Fiorella Mannoia, essentiality and sobriety at the time of lockdown

Fiorella Mannoia, essentiality and sobriety at the time of lockdown

Hurray Fiorella Mannoia who turns 70 today. The Roman singer is one of the greatest interpreters of our songwriting. To celebrate her birthday we resumed our review of her latest album, “Masters of Nothing”, published in November 2020, in the middle of the pandemic. A record made up of just eight songs which he justified with these words: “This choice was also the result of the spirit of the lockdown: I was looking for essentiality and sobriety. There is no longer time to insert useless fillers into albums and to fill albums with nice songs but they don't convince anyone.”

It all began during the lockdown last spring, the first of the pandemic emergency, when Fiorella Mannoia, closed in her home in Rome, began to put together some reflections and audition the songs that in the meantime had arrived from various authors. You have created a more thoughtful and calm album, less “combative” than the one you have always accustomed us to. “Padroni di niente” is composed of eight tracks in which the artist's style remains intact and does not differ from what has been produced to date. It arrives just a year after “Personale” and is the direct result of a suspended historical period, which is why, with a few exceptions, it is a project that she does not scratch, she prefers to observe and talk about. The cover is also explanatory of the spirit of the album, inspired by the painting “Wanderer on the Sea of ​​Fog” by Caspar David Friedrich, which portrays a “Wanderer”, in this case Mannoia, while observing his own civilization, looking at himself in it and reflecting on all the good and bad that man has built, as in the case of the song “Si èròrouto”.

It is the distinctive feature of all the songs: they are reflections, sometimes personal, others with a higher gaze, on the surrounding reality. The album makes use of the collaboration of many different authors: “Padroni di niente” (Amara, already author, again for Mannoia, of “Che sia benedetta” and “Il peso del courage”), “Who knows where a song comes from” (Last), “It broke down” (Enrico Lotterini, Fabio Capezzone, Fiorella Mannoia), “La gente parla” (Amara, Simone Cristicchi), “Sogna” (Edoardo Galletti, Fiorella Mannoia), “Olà” (Bungaro, Cesare Chiodo, Fiorella Mannoia), “Here I am” (Bungaro, Cesare Chiodo, Carlo Di Francesco) and “Only a daughter (with Olivia XX, i.e. Arianna Silvestri)”.

As in the previous album, “Personale”, released last year, the formula of the “suspended song” returns here too, which takes inspiration from the Neapolitan tradition of “suspended coffee”. A coffee left for someone you don't know: hence the idea of ​​sharing a space in your album with an emerging artist, the singer-songwriter Olivia XX, with whom you duet on the notes of “Solo una forza”, the last song, which tells the difficult, tragic stories of two young girls. It is one of the most emotional and poignant pieces of “Masters of Nothing”.

The awareness that no one is the master of anything, “because a tiny biological entity was enough to bring an entire humanity to its knees, including that world, ours, which we believed to be invincible”, explained Mannoia. “What if we're really making a mistake and having the worst dream ever?”, she sings. The piece is an invitation to focus more on the true value of life. It is a piece in full Mannoia style, less combative, but which starts almost with a spoken word and a light melody, and then reinvigorates itself in the singing and in the sound. On a thematic level, the meaning around which the whole album revolves is also contained.