The first of hopefully many series of songs and skits relating to our time growing up in Papineau – minority 1st Generation anglophone youths born to working-class Italian parents growing up in a Montréal after 1980 Referendum and during the 1995 Referendum. This is one of The Guys’ recounting of his experience.
The Fantastic Culture Clash between Nonna Pippina & her Grandson
4 years after my grandfather passed away, my grandmother, La Nonna Pippina, the benchmark for all things sarcasm, came to live at my house. My grandmother lived through hard times. Namely, during the allied raids for the liberation of Sicily, she ran to the mountains with her 3 & 2 year old son to seek shelter from the bombings. She was a hard woman, and would show you love through sarcasm and constructive?!-criticism. She was the ultimate mother hen. I loved her, like every grandson loves their grandmother, but sometimes she would make my round ones square. Sometimes, is an understatement. My cousins and I have spent countless hours recounting our own personal experiences with La Nonna Pippina, and I am sure you all have those special stories with your respective Nonna Pippinas. I guess this is my personal tribute to those momments when your round ones become so sqaure that they rip a hole through your favorite pants, that La Nonna Pippina va rippizari with a non-matching piece of cloth (blue polka dot dress) she found in her cloth bag.
Ada Piciò (A Siciian tribute to Ed Lover’s C’mon Son)
C’mon Son is a phenomenon that took th internet by storm in 2009. Ed Lover speaks his mind about current events with his own very unique twist. Ada Piciò a Sicilian tribute Ed Lover’s online social commentary. Instead I took it from Hollywood to Cattolica, Eraclea, QC ie. Montreal. We all have the old uncle, aunt, dad, mom, Nonna that likes to talk about current affairs in their own community, family etc etc. Ada Piciò is a rendition of all those people who you know in your life that always have an opinion, no matter how outdated, and contrary to your beliefs. But as you know they are always right: ada piciò, la vo finiri cu sta minghiata, comu ti presenti. Tu pensi cha si chiu spertu di mia. SIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII, a hahahahahahaah. C’iau 30 anni supecchiu di tia, e vidica beddru me ti posso imparari comu marcianu li cosi. I by no means condone what my alter ego says, but you have to understand that someone who came off the boat, uneducated, and started working the minute they hit land, thats all they know. You try to make them understand, but its never going to happen. I guess you just laugh at it.
A song about that special person whose light guides you when its too dark to see. That beacon that shows the way home.
Tengu nu Sciccareddru (The Lamenting Song)
How many times while growing up did my grandmother slap on old Sicilian records about u terrimoto du quarantasetti (the earthquake of ’51), the story of Salvatore Giuliano (Sicily’s Prince of Theives), the tale of the missing Donkey etc. The songs always had the same 3/4 waltzy beat, the singers always the same cadence, and the spoken word intro before ther singers kick in with their lament. I think the lament was the precursor to ’90’s Eurodance music when the white german guy posing as a black guy would rap before the girl with the airy voice would sing, all this back up by the one finger piano melody. I actually like both genres. One was instrinsic to my childhood as 1st generation italo-canadese boy in the Villeray Papineau area, the other the soundtrack to debauchery. Anyway, back in the 50’s, the car was taking over as the main means of transportation, but we couldn’t afford a car, nor a horse, so we had a donkey; this donkey was the ultimate companion, so obviously when your donkey would pass away or be rustled away by another sheep-herder, it sucked. This is the story of a man and his donkey.